Acer Announces New Thin Client Product Line and Business Partnership
Acer announced today at VMWorld its entrance into the thin client market with its Acer Vertion N Series. With prices estimated to start at $239, the Acer Veriton N Series is available in three platforms, the N2010G, N2110G and the N2620G.
Fairly compact, measuring at 6.9 x 4.8 x 1.4 inches, the Acer Veriton N2010G Series offers power efficiency in a small form factor. Running on the DeTOS 7.1 operating system with an ARM-based DM8148 processor by TI, this platform features no moving parts increasing its reliability. Detailed specifications for the N2010G include four USB 2.0 ports, a PowerVR SGX350 graphics accelerator an HD Video accelerator, 1GB of RAM and an SSD.
“Because the N1010G is based on ARM, it’s very, very power efficient and provides excellent performance. One of the key features of being able to have that power efficiency is the optional power over Ethernet. That means for clients who have invested in POE, it could be quite popular—anywhere you might see Voice over IP or at call centers, this integrates very, very nicely. You don’t have to plug it into power, you just plug it into Ethernet and it boots up,” says Michael O'Beirne, Acer Senior Director, Commercial Product Marketing.
Saving up to 85 per cent in electricity costs in comparison to a regular desktop computer, the Acer Veriton N2110G provides high performance through its dual core AMD G-T56N processor, 2GB of RAM, AMD Radeon HD 6320 graphics, four USB 2.0, two USB 3.0 ports all encased in a form factor that is just 9.9 x 8.3 x 1.6 inches. This thin client product even features the ability to be placed flat or vertically as well as opportunities to attach to the back of a monitor to save desk space. Customers will be able to choose between the DeTOS 7.1 or Windows Embedded Standard 7 OS.
“For customers that are looking for the ultimate perforating thing client with tons of graphics performance for when you’re running dual concurrent screens and essentially running financial charting or diagrams or you just want to make sure you’re providing the best perception of performance then this is the right solution for those customers,” said O’Beirne.
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Designed like an update to the Veriton N282G, the Acer Veriton N2620G is easy to set up and compact for the office. Offering customers DVI-I plus HDMI Dual output, the system is run on up to a second generation Intel Celeron 887 processor, Intel HD Graphics, 4GB of DDR3 SDRAM, two mini PCI Express 2.0 slots, with the choice of a DeTOS 7.1, Windows Embedded Standard 7 or Windows 7/78 operating system.
Acer was able to make an entrance into the thin client market due directly to a business relationship it has built with Devon IT.
“With our entry into the thin client marketplace, we wanted to ensure our customers had a variety of solutions that fit the different needs. One of those was a purpose-built thin client operating system. We checked the market and we believed that Devon IT had the best solution in this space with their DeTOS operating system. DeTOS is Linux based and it is purpose built to be a thin client operating system, has extra performance and has a really small footprint. Customers that are looking for a high performing, small footprint thin client, DeTOS is a wonderful solution,” said O’Beirne.
The relationship has created this new line of products which Acer believes complements customers' requirements well.
“It’s been a great partnership. The Devon IT relationship is a key component to us being able to deliver certain solutions in the thin client space and we’re excited about launching our products,” said O’Beirne.
Acer is debuting these products and solutions at VMWorld this week. Be sure to check out their offerings at Booth 223.
Dr Peng Wei: Designing the Future of Autonomous Aircraft
Air traffic is expected to double by 2037. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the world will need 37,000+ new passenger and freight aircraft, and more than half a million new pilots—unless we come up with another solution. Right now, a George Washington University School of Engineering and Applied Science professor, Dr Peng Wei, is starting to research autonomous electric aircraft design.
NASA will fund the research, which will study how to minimise risks for electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL). As Airbus states: ‘Autonomous technologies also have the potential to improve air traffic management, enhance sustainability performance and further improve aircraft safety’.
Who is Dr Wei?
An assistant professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Dr Wei has researched aircraft control, optimisation, and AI and ML applications in aviation. Over the next three years, he’ll lead the US$2.5mn NASA grant project in collaboration with researchers from Vanderbilt, the University of Texas at Austin, and MIT’s Lincoln Lab.
Why is His Research Important?
Even though the wide adoption of self-piloting cars, much less aircraft, is still far down the road, technologies that Dr Wei and his colleagues are researching will form the commercial transport of the future. But aviation manufacturers, in order to produce autonomous aircraft, will have to meet extremely high safety standards.
‘The key challenge for self-piloting capabilities is how the system reacts to unforeseen events’, said Arne Stoschek, Wayfinder Project Executive at Acubed. ‘That’s the big jump from automated to autonomous’. In the air, AI-piloted aircraft will have to manoeuvre around adverse weather conditions, such as wind and storms, and other high-altitude risks, such as GPS hacking, cyberattacks, and aircraft degradation. And the stakes are high.
‘If a machine learning algorithm makes a mistake in Facebook, TikTok, Netflix —that doesn't matter too much because I was just recommended a video or movie I don't like’, Dr Wei said. ‘But if a machine learning algorithm mistake happens in a safety-critical application, such as aviation or in autonomous driving, people may have accidents. There may be fatal results’.
What Are His Other Projects?
In addition to the new NASA research, Dr Wei has been awarded three other grants to pursue AI-piloted aircraft:
- A 2-year grant from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in conjunction with West Virginia University and Honeywell Aerospace to investigate “learning-based” aviation systems
- A six-month SBIR Phase I NASA award with Intelligent Automation to mitigate airspace congestion at vertiports—the electric craft version of airports.
- A 1-year collaborative grant with the University of Virginia and George Mason University from the Virginia Commonwealth Cyber Initiative (CCI) to develop anti-cyber attack technologies and aviation video systems
Research like NASA and Dr Wei’s three-year programme will help improve how AI reacts and adapts to challenging air conditions. In coming years, autonomous aircraft will likely take off slowly, starting with small package delivery, then upgraded drones, and finally commercialised aircraft. But congestion issues will worsen until autonomous aircraft are the best alternative.
According to BBC Future, by 2030, commuters will spend nearly 100 hours a year in Los Angeles and Moscow traffic jams, and 43 cities will be home to more than 10 million people. The final verdict? Bring on the AI-operated transit.