Windows Vista USB ReadyBoost Flash Drive

USB ready boost flash driveUSB ReadyBoost drive from Super Talent is the first official USB drive that is specifically targeted at the Windows Vista ReadyBoost technology. By using either the Super Talent 1GB or 2GB flash drive you can instantly boost PC performance via increased RAM by inserting the flash drive into your PC. This is a nice technology Microsoft developed which greatly aids in the ability Continue Reading

So what is SLC flash memory anyway?

What is SLC flash memory?

SLC stands for Single Layer Cell and is flash memory with a single “story” of memory and each cell has two possible states (state = a voltage level) with each state representing either a one or a zero. SLC memory has the advantage of higher write speeds because there is less time for a computer system ro access the cell for a read or write function. There is also less power consumption because the amount of power to change the state is also reduced because of only one “story” required to access or change the cell. SLC memory is the most expensive type of flash memory and harder to source.

A single-level cell (SLC) flash memory may have a lifetime of about 50,000 to 100,000 program/erase cycles.

Today, most consumer products are MLC flash memory or Multi Level Cell flash memory. In February 2016, a study was published that showed little difference in practice between the reliability of SLC and MLC flash memory. Because SLC memory stores less data per cell than MLC memory, it costs more per megabyte of storage to manufacture, this report and the real-world experince with longevity is one reason MLC is more prevelant than SLC flash memory.

To boil it down into simple terms, picture the size of a stamp…now, that size can be used as memory and a Single Layer Cell flash memory will hold what can be stuffed into that sized stamp, but Multi Layer Cell flash memory can double that capacity yet stay at the same physical size. Or x2. The advantage to using MLC is reducing the cost of memory production, suddenly you have twice the capacity at the same price, which is a big advantage for flash drive manufacturers. It allows the company to offer larger memory storage products at cheaper prices. Of course there is a hook.

what is SLC flash memory

A significant portion of the flash-based memory devices on the market today are made from MLC flash and the continuing growth of flash drive products can be considered an indication that the performance is meeting consumers’ needs. However, since the use of MLC technology offers the highest density there is a tradeoff, and you guessed it, a tradeoff of lower performance. Lower performance in the form of slower write (and potentially erase) speeds, as well as reduced write/erase cycling endurance. In addition, life expectancy of SLC flash is rated at approximately 100,000 cycles and MLC flash is rated to have approximately 10,000 cycles. That’s 10 times longer with SLC based products. However, in many cases, 10,000 erase cycles is more than sufficient for the life cycle of the product.

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Jack PC – A computer inside a wall outlet

The Jack PC is a revolutionary new ‘thin client’ computer small enough to fit in a wall outlet. Thin clients are effectively desktop computers designed to connect to a ‘terminal server’ or Citrix based environment where processing is handled by servers instead of PCs. Thin clients have been getting smaller and smaller over the years however this is the world’s first Windows-based thin client small enough to fit in a network wall port. Continue Reading

Intel Xscale getting the axe

Xscale is getting the axe including other divisions such as its network processors business IXP. Intel spent more than $10 billion to enter the communications business over the years, but the microprocessor giant lost its shirt — if not millions of dollars in the arena. The reported communications-chip sale is said to be part of Intel’s plan to overhaul the company. Intel is also set to include the layoff or redeployment of 16,000 employees. Continue Reading

Wirless connection from DVD player to HD-TV (UWB)

OMRON Corporation announced that it will launch a new SMD Polymeric Antenna for short-range, wireless Ultra-Wideband (UWB) applications. Driven by consumer demand for simple wireless functionality, “point-and-shoot” usability and increasingly mobile lifestyles, the wireless communications market, led by Bluetooth and wireless LAN, has shown phenomenal growth over the past few years. UWBi is now attracting particular attention as a solution for high-speed, high-volume reliable data transmission over short distances. Product launch is scheduled for 1 June, 2006. Continue Reading

Cypress USB controllers stretch from NY to LA and back again

How far would half a billion USB controllers stretch if laid end-to-end? Try from NY City to Los Angeles and back again. That is how many USB controllers Cypress has shipped since their inception of the USB controller product line in 1997. Fueled by growing consumer demand in USB-enabled applications such as mice, keyboards, hubs, media and video players, mobile phones, mass storage (external hard disk drives & enclosures), set top boxes, photo printers and video capture peripherals, Cypress shipped over 130 million USB controllers in 2005, the most in its history, and is already approaching 600 million units shipped from inception to date. This press release in conjunction with our recent article about USB devices reaching 2.8 billion units by 2010 means we’ll be busy for a while… Continue Reading

Cypress releases first “Infotainment” USB host controller

Cypress Semiconductor introduces the world’s first Infotainment USB Host/Peripheral controller. The EZ-Host is targeted to the automotive industry to make communication between car and GPS, MP3 players, mobile handsets and in-vehicle radios as easy as a USB port. The EZ-Host is a 16-bit RISC microcontroller with 2 configurable SIEs and one configurable I/O block. Continue Reading

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