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Hidden Impacts of Ferocious Volcanic Eruption Finally Revealed

Long-time Slashdot reader schwit1 shared an interesting article from ScienceAlert:

Undersea volcanic eruptions account for more than three-quarters of all volcanism on Earth, but rarely do we see the impacts. The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai eruption of 2022 was a dramatic exception. Its furious explosion from shallow waters broke the ocean surface and punched through the stratosphere, generating supercharged lighting and an atmospheric shock wave that circled the globe several times.

But there was far more to the fallout than satellite images could possibly capture or observers could report. We know the human toll this explosion took, but now a new study investigating the underwater impacts of the Hunga-Tonga eruption has detailed just how ferociously the explosion tore open the seafloor, ripped up undersea cables, and smothered marine life... The team also compiled a trove of data from ship-based sonar, sediment cores, geochemical analyses, water column samples, and video footage to chart the devastatingly powerful upheaval...

Their analyses show at least 6 cubic kilometers (km3) of seafloor was lost from within the caldera — 20 times the eruptive volume of the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption — and an additional 3.5 km3 of material was blasted out of the Hunga volcano's submerged flanks... That leaves roughly four-fifths of the ejected material in the ocean; material that was funneled into fast-moving density flows that scoured out tracks 30 meters deep in the seafloor and accumulated 22 meters (72 feet) thick in some places.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

New Internet Standard L4S: the Quiet Plan to Make the Internet Feel Faster

Slow load times? Choppy videos? The real problem is latency, writes the Verge — but the good news is "there's a plan to almost eliminate latency, and big companies like Apple, Google, Comcast, Charter, Nvidia, Valve, Nokia, Ericsson, T-Mobile parent company Deutsche Telekom, and more have shown an interest."

It's a new internet standard called L4S that was finalized and published in January, and it could put a serious dent in the amount of time we spend waiting around for webpages or streams to load and cut down on glitches in video calls. It could also help change the way we think about internet speed and help developers create applications that just aren't possible with the current realities of the internet... L4S stands for Low Latency, Low Loss, Scalable Throughput, and its goal is to make sure your packets spend as little time needlessly waiting in line as possible by reducing the need for queuing. To do this, it works on making the latency feedback loop shorter; when congestion starts happening, L4S means your devices find out about it almost immediately and can start doing something to fix the problem. Usually, that means backing off slightly on how much data they're sending... [L4S] makes it easier to maintain a good amount of data throughput without adding latency that increases the amount of time it takes for data to be transferred...

If you really want to get into it (and you know a lot about networking), you can read the specification paper on the Internet Engineering Task Force's website... The L4S standard adds an indicator to packets, which says whether they experienced congestion on their journey from one device to another. If they sail right on through, there's no problem, and nothing happens. But if they have to wait in a queue for more than a specified amount of time, they get marked as having experienced congestion. That way, the devices can start making adjustments immediately to keep the congestion from getting worse and to potentially eliminate it altogether... In terms of reducing latency on the internet, L4S or something like it is "a pretty necessary thing," according to Greg White, a technologist at research and development firm CableLabs who helped work on the standard. "This buffering delay typically has been hundreds of milliseconds to even thousands of milliseconds in some cases. Some of the earlier fixes to buffer bloat brought that down into the tens of milliseconds, but L4S brings that down to single-digit milliseconds...."

Here's the bad news: for the most part, L4S isn't in use in the wild yet. However, there are some big names involved with developing it... When we spoke to Greg White from CableLabs, he said there were already around 20 cable modems that support it today and that several ISPs like Comcast, Charter, and Virgin Media have participated in events meant to test how prerelease hardware and software work with L4S. Companies like Nokia, Vodafone, and Google have also attended, so there definitely seems to be some interest. Apple put an even bigger spotlight on L4S at WWDC 2023 after including beta support for it in iOS 16 and macOS Ventura... At around the same time as WWDC, Comcast announced the industry's first L4S field trials in collaboration with Apple, Nvidia, and Valve. That way, content providers can mark their traffic (like Nvidia's GeForce Now game streaming), and customers in the trial markets with compatible hardware like the Xfinity 10G Gateway XB7 / XB8, Arris S33, or Netgear CM1000v2 gateway can experience it right now...
The other factor helping L4S is that it's broadly compatible with the congestion control systems in use today...

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Is There a Mass Exodus of Former Silicon Valley Tech Companies From Austin, Texas?

"Over the years, Austin has seen a huge migration of tech companies moving to the city, from billionaire owners of Twitter (X) to the largest search engine in the world," according to a local news site in Texas.

"But many startups are now choosing to leave the capital city they once flocked to because of the rising cost of living, low funding, and lack of diversity, according to TechCrunch. "
On Thursday, December 7, the cloud computing company VMWare announced it was laying off 577 employees in Austin as part of a nationwide job reduction to cut costs, according to the Austin American-Statesman. TechCrunch is reporting that startup founders, like Techstars Managing Director Amos Schwartzfarb, are announcing their decisions to leave Austin's "lackluster" startup scene... In 2022, Meta abandoned plans to move into the biggest skyscraper in Austin, and Google froze plans to move into 35 floors of a different downtown building, despite paying rent to the developer, according to the Washington Post...

In January, CEO Don Ward of Laundris, a B2B enterprise industrial software platform, announced he would be relocating his company to Tulsa because it reminded him "of where Austin was 10 years ago in terms of the tech ecosystem being built," according to Tulsa World. Last month, startup unicorn Cart, an e-commerce business, announced it was moving its headquarters back to Houston after relocating to Austin in late 2021, according to TechCrunch.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

The Register

Biting the hand that feeds IT — Enterprise Technology News and Analysis

Raspberry Pi sizes up HAT+ spec for future hardware add-ons

First to wear it will be an M.2 connector that draws power from PCIe

The Raspberry Pi project has released the first revision to its Hardware Attached on Top (HAT) spec, along with an update to the RPi 5's PCIE handling tools.…

Hoe Rotterdam wegkeek bij waarschuwingen over corruptie

Rotterdamse ambtenaren sloegen vanaf eind 2020 alarm over mogelijke fraude en corruptie bij grote vastgoedprojecten in de stad.

Historisch lage opkomst in Hongkong bij verkiezingen

Slechts 27,5 procent van de stemgerechtigden bracht hun stem uit. De daling in opkomst volgt op de invoering van de veiligheidswet in 2020 door China.

Dan Taulapapa McMullin, Seiana

Thomas Hawk posted a photo:

Dan Taulapapa McMullin, Seiana

Just Dreaming of a Simple Life

Thomas Hawk posted a photo:

Just Dreaming of a Simple Life

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Wombat nicknamed Ian Thorpe after being rescued from Canberra lake

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