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What’s better to do at this time than to indulge in some predictions for 2023? This morning, I published a story in MIT Technology Review’s “What’s Next in Tech” series, looking at what will happen in the global semiconductor industry this year.

To give you a brief overview, I was told by many experts that the already-stressed global chips supply chain will be challenged even more by geopolitics in 2023.

Over much of 2022, the US started to take steps to freeze China out of the industry—even forming an alliance with the Netherlands and Japan to restrict chip exports to the country. The measures have pushed the once market-driven business to come up with contingency plans to survive the cold-war-like environment—like diversifying from the Chinese supply chain and building factories elsewhere. We may see more similar plans announced in the next year. And at the same time, the US government’s punitive restrictions will start to be enforced and industrial subsidies for domestic chip makers will start to be doled out, meaning new companies may end up on top while others may get penalized for still selling to China.

To learn more about how the US, China, Taiwan, and Europe may navigate the industry this year, read the full article here.

ButI also want to highlight something that didn’t make it into the story—a rather unintended outcome of the chip tech blockade. While the high-end sector of China’s chip industry suffers, the country may take a bigger role in manufacturing older-generation chips that are still widely used in everyday life.

That may sound counterintuitive. Weren’t the US restrictions last year meant to severely hurt China’s semiconductor industry?

Yes, but the US government has been intentional about limiting the impact to advanced chips. For example, in the realm of logic chips—those that perform tasks, as opposed to storing data—the US rules only limit China’s ability to produce chips with 14-nanometer nodes or better, which is basically the chip-making technology introduced in the last eight years. The restrictions don’t apply to producing chips with older technologies.

The consideration here is that older chips are widely used in electronics, cars, and other ordinary objects. If the US were to craft a restriction so wide that it destroyed China’s entire electronic manufacturing industry, it would surely agitate the Chinese government enough to retaliate in ways that would hurt the US. “If you want to piss somebody off, push them into a corner and give them no way out. Then they’ll come and punch you really hard,” says Woz Ahmed, a UK-based consultant and former chip industry executive.

Instead, the idea is to inflict pain only in selective areas, like the most advanced technologies that may power China’s supercomputers, artificial intelligence, and advanced weapons.

“[US] policies have a very limited immediate impact on the Chinese domestic chip industry because very few Chinese companies have achieved advanced processes, except HiSilicon,” says He Hui, a research director at consulting firm Omdia who focuses on China’s semiconductor market. “But HiSilicon was already [placed on the blacklist] three years ago.”

And lower-end, legacy chips are also the subsector where China already has a significant advantage. We are not talking about chips used in powering the artificial intelligence of a self-driving car, but the chips that control a specific part, like airbags. As the technology of the Internet of Things rapidly develops, it still requires many small chips that don’t need to be so advanced. 

“That stuff is still going to be made in China, at least based on the current settings that the Biden administration has conveyed. So that obviously leaves a big incentive and a big market for foreign companies—European, Japanese, and South Korean—to continue working with the Chinese,” says John Lee, the director of East West Futures Consulting who researches the global impacts of China’s tech industries.

Part of the reason China maintains an advantage here is that in a market of mature, lower-end technologies, price is the most important thing. And China has been historically great at low-cost mass production, thanks to low labor costs and generous industrial subsidies from the government.

A future where China fully dominates in low-end chips has already spooked some Western observers. A report published in Lawfare calls this possibility “a huge supply chain vulnerability.” “The Chinese could just flood the market with these technologies. Normal companies can’t compete, because they can’t make money at those levels,” Dan Hutcheson, an economist at research firm TechInsights, told Reuters.

Other

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By: Zeyi Yang
Title: Chinese chips will keep powering your everyday life
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2023/01/04/1066136/chinese-legacy-chips-advantage/
Published Date: Wed, 04 Jan 2023 11:00:00 +0000

Tech

Inside the hunt for new physics at the world’s largest particle collider

In 1977, Ray and Charles Eames released a remarkable film that, over the course of just nine minutes, spanned the limits of human knowledge. Powers of Ten begins with an overhead shot of a man on a picnic blanket inside a one-square-­meter frame. The camera pans out: 10, then 100 meters, then a kilometer, and eventually all the way to the then-known edges of the observable universe—1024 meters. There, at the farthest vantage, it reverses. The camera zooms back in, flying through galaxies to arrive at the picnic scene, where it plunges into the man’s skin, digging down through successively smaller scales: tissues, cells, DNA, molecules, atoms, and eventually atomic nuclei—10-14 meters. The narrator’s smooth voice-over ends the journey: “As a single proton fills our scene, we reach the edge of present understanding.”

During the intervening half-century, particle physicists have been exploring the subatomic landscape where Powers of Ten left off. Today, much of this global effort centers on CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC), an underground ring 17 miles (27 kilometers) around that straddles the border between Switzerland and France. There, powerful magnets guide hundreds of trillions of protons as they do laps at nearly the speed of light underneath the countryside. When a proton headed clockwise plows into a proton headed counterclockwise, the churn of matter into energy transmutes the protons into debris: electrons, photons, and more exotic subatomic bric-a-brac. The newly created particles explode radially outward, where they are picked up by detectors.

In 2012, using data from the LHC, researchers discovered a particle called the Higgs boson. In the process, they answered a nagging question: Where do fundamental particles, such as the ones that make up all the protons and neutrons in our bodies, get their mass? A half-­century earlier, theorists had cautiously dreamed the Higgs boson up, along with an accompanying field that would invisibly suffuse space and provide mass to particles that interact with it. When the particle was finally found, scientists celebrated with champagne. A Nobel for two of the physicists who predicted the Higgs boson soon followed.

But now, more than a decade after the excitement of finding the Higgs, there is a sense of unease, because there are still unanswered questions about the fundamental constituents of the universe.

Perhaps the most persistent of these questions is the identity of dark matter, a mysterious substance that binds galaxies together and makes up 27% of the cosmos’s mass. We know dark matter must exist because we have astronomical observations of its gravitational effects. But since the discovery of the Higgs, the LHC has seen no new particles—of dark matter or anything else—despite nearly doubling its collision energy and quintupling the amount of data it can collect. Some physicists have said that particle physics is in a “crisis,” but there is disagreement even on that characterization: another camp insists the field is fine and still others say that there is indeed a crisis, but that crisis is good. “I think the community of particle phenomenologists is in a deep crisis, and I think people are afraid to say those words,” says Yoni Kahn, a theorist at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

The anxieties of particle physicists may, at first blush, seem like inside baseball. In reality, they concern the universe, and how we can continue to study it—of interest if you care about that sort of thing. The past 50 years of research have given us a spectacularly granular view of nature’s laws, each successive particle discovery clarifying how things really work at the bottom. But now, in the post-Higgs era, particle physicists have reached an impasse in their quest to discover, produce, and study new particles at colliders. “We do not have a strong beacon telling us where to look for new physics,” Kahn says.

So, crisis or no crisis, researchers are trying something new. They are repurposing detectors to search for unusual-looking particles, squeezing what they can out of the data with machine learning, and planning for entirely new kinds of colliders. The hidden particles that physicists are looking for have proved more elusive than many expected, but the search is not over—nature has just forced them to get more creative.

n almost-complete theory

As the Eameses were finishing Powers of Ten in the late ’70s, particle physicists were bringing order to a “zoo” of particles that had been discovered in the preceding decades. Somewhat drily, they called this framework, which enumerated the kinds of particles and their dynamics, the Standard Model.

Roughly speaking, the Standard Model separates fundamental particles into two types: fermions and bosons. Fermions are the bricks of matter—two kinds of fermions called up and down quarks, for example, are bound

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By: Dan Garisto
Title: Inside the hunt for new physics at the world’s largest particle collider
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2024/02/20/1088002/higgs-boson-physics-particle-collider-large-hadron-collider/
Published Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2024 10:00:00 +0000

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Tech

Transforming document understanding and insights with generative AI

Adobe AI

At some point over the last two decades, productivity applications enabled humans (and machines!) to create information at the speed of digital—faster than any person could possibly consume or understand it. Modern inboxes and document folders are filled with information: digital haystacks with needles of insight that too often remain undiscovered.

Adobe AI Assistant 1000px 1

Generative AI is an incredibly exciting technology that’s already delivering tremendous value to our customers across creative and experience-building applications. Now Adobe is embarking on our next chapter of innovation by introducing our first generative AI capabilities for digital documents and bringing the new technology to the masses.

AI Assistant in Adobe Acrobat, now in beta, is a new generative AI–powered conversational engine deeply integrated into Acrobat workflows, empowering everyone with the information inside their most important documents.

ccelerating productivity across popular document formats

As the creator of PDF, the world’s most trusted digital document format, Adobe understands document challenges and opportunities well. Our continually evolving Acrobat PDF application, the gold standard for working with PDFs, is already used by more than half a billion customers to open around 400 billion documents each year. Starting immediately, customers will be able to use AI Assistant to work even more productively. All they need to do is open Acrobat on their desktop or the web and start working.

With AI Assistant in Acrobat, project managers can scan, summarize, and distribute meeting highlights in seconds, and sales teams can quickly personalize pitch decks and respond to client requests. Students can shorten the time they spend hunting through research and spend more time on analysis and understanding, while social media and marketing teams can quickly surface top trends and issues into daily updates for stakeholders. AI Assistant can also streamline the time it takes to compose an email or scan a contract of any kind, enhancing productivity for knowledge workers and consumers globally.

Innovating with AI—responsibly

Adobe has continued to evolve the digital document category for over 30 years. We invented the PDF format and open-sourced it to the world. And we brought Adobe’s decade-long legacy of AI innovation to digital documents, including the award-winning Liquid Mode, which allows Acrobat to dynamically reflow document content and make it readable on smaller screens. The experience we’ve gained by building Liquid Mode and then learning how customers get value from it is foundational to what we’ve delivered in AI Assistant.

Today, PDF is the number-one business file format stored in the cloud, and PDFs are where individuals and organizations keep, share, and collaborate on their most important information. Adobe remains committed to secure and responsible AI innovation for digital documents, and AI Assistant in Acrobat has guardrails in place so that all customers—from individuals to the largest enterprises—can use the new features with confidence.

Like other Adobe AI features, AI Assistant in Acrobat has been developed and deployed in alignment with Adobe’s AI principles and is governed by secure data protocols. Adobe has taken a model-agnostic approach to developing AI Assistant, curating best-in-class technologies to provide customers with the value they need. When working with third-party large language models (LLMs), Adobe contractually obligates them to employ confidentiality and security protocols that match our own high standards, and we specifically prohibit third-party LLMs from manually reviewing or training their models on Adobe customer data.

The future of intelligent document experiences

Today’s beta features are part of a larger Adobe vision to transform digital document experiences with generative AI. Our vision for what’s next includes the following:

Insights across multiple documents and document types: AI Assistant will work across multiple documents, document types, and sources, instantly surfacing the most important information from everywhere.AI-powered authoring, editing, and formatting: Last year, customers edited tens of billions of documents in Acrobat. AI Assistant will make it simple to quickly generate first drafts, as well as

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By: Deepak Bharadwaj
Title: Transforming document understanding and insights with generative AI
Sourced From: www.technologyreview.com/2024/02/20/1088584/transforming-document-understanding-and-insights-with-generative-ai/
Published Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2024 16:08:01 +0000

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Motor

REVIVING LEGENDS: The Timeless Transformation of a ’66 Corvette Resto-Mod

1966 Corvette Convertible 01 200x133 1 jpg

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REVIVING LEGENDS: The Timeless Transformation of a ’66 Corvette Resto-Mod

Written by Nicole Ellan James

2024 PALM BEACH AUCTION – 1966 CHEVROLET CORVETTE CUSTOM CONVERTIBLE – NO RESERVE

Resto-Mods have surged in popularity within the collector car community, and it’s easy to see why. These vehicles, characterized by their classic appearance combined with modern upgrades, encompass everything from sleek bodywork to advanced technology and powertrain enhancements. In recent years, the appeal of Resto-Mods has skyrocketed among buyers, with Corvettes standing out as constant favorites within this category.

The fusion of yesteryear’s charm with today’s innovation presents enthusiasts with an enticing combination of nostalgia and exhilaration. Resto-Mods embody this harmonious union, delivering the timeless allure of vintage aesthetics alongside the excitement of modern driving experiences. They serve as a compelling tribute to automotive history, capturing the essence of bygone eras while embracing the advancements of the present day.

Imagine a stunningly restored 1960s Corvette, now boasting a fuel-injected powerhouse, enhanced suspension and state-of-the-art infotainment system. This is precisely the transformation custom builder Jeff Hayes orchestrated with this 1966 Chevrolet Corvette convertible Resto-Mod, a project finished in October 2022.

Under the hood, an LS3 V8 engine rated with 540 horsepower is the starting point. The LS3 is known for its formidable power and relentless performance. Paired seamlessly with a 4L70E automatic transmission, this dynamic duo ensures smooth acceleration with precise shifts, for what’s sure to be an incredible driving experience.

Beneath its sleek exterior, this Corvette rests upon an Art Morrison sport chassis, renowned for its exceptional strength, agility and precision engineering. This high-performance foundation offers modern stability and handling, allowing the Corvette to carve through corners with confidence and command the road with authority. Bringing this Resto-Mod’s performance to a smooth halt are 4-wheel Wilwood disc brakes. Whether you’re pushing the limits on the open road or cruising through city streets, these brakes can deliver consistent and reliable braking performance, providing peace of mind and control in almost any driving scenario.

Finished in Bright Red paint, the exterior of this Corvette is complemented by a Saddle Brazilian leather interior.

Completing the look are striking Schott wheels, which accentuate the classic lines of the vehicle while adding a touch of contemporary flair. The wheels are wrapped in custom red line tires that not only enhance the aesthetic appeal but also ensure a smooth and responsive ride.

Step inside, and you’ll find a sanctuary of modern comfort and convenience seamlessly integrated into the classic design. The interior of this Resto-Mod features a Vintage Air system, ensuring the climate inside the cabin is comfortable regardless of the weather outside. A cutting-edge AM/FM Bluetooth stereo system delivers crystal-clear sound, allowing you to soundtrack your journey with your favorite tunes wirelessly. Other amenities include power steering and power windows for modern convivences.

This 1966 Chevrolet Corvette is selling with No Reserve at the 2024 Palm Beach Auction, April 18-20 at the South Florida Fairgrounds. Register to bid today to take this one-of-a-kind Resto-Mod Corvette home with you.

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By: Barrett-Jackson
Title: REVIVING LEGENDS: The Timeless Transformation of a ’66 Corvette Resto-Mod
Sourced From: www.barrett-jackson.com/Media/Home/Reader/reviving-legends-the-timeless-transformation-of-a-66-corvette-resto-mod/
Published Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2024 16:23:35 +0000

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