Ingres and VectorWise Claim Database Speedup

Firms rebuild database functions from scratch

2 min read

To hear those in the know tell it, database management systems leave a lot to be desired: They require too much hardware, and they make poor use of it. Some advocate a shift in the type of hardware used—away from the CPU toward graphics-processing units [see "Data Monster," September 2009]. But open-source database firm Ingres, of Redwood City, Calif., and start-up VectorWise, of Amsterdam, see the answer in a better use of the CPU.

Their prototype software has shown more than a 10-fold improvement in performance and an 80-fold improvement in some tasks.

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Is Worldcoin a Crypto-currency for the Masses or Your Digital ID?

The project aims to scan all the world’s eyeballs

10 min read
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This photo shows a man holding a silver sphere that is about the size of a bowling ball. A seated women stares at the ball. Behind her, others wait their turns.

People queue up to have their irises scanned at an outdoor sign-up event for Worldcoin in Indonesia.

WorldCoin
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In a college classroom in the Indian city of Bangalore last August, Moiz Ahmed held up a volleyball-size chrome globe with a glass-covered opening at its center. Ahmed explained to the students that if they had their irises scanned with the device, known as the Orb, they would be rewarded with 25 Worldcoins, a soon-to-be released cryptocurrency. The scan, he said, was to make sure they hadn’t signed up before. That’s because Worldcoin, the company behind the project, wants to create the most widely and evenly distributed cryptocurrency ever by giving every person on the planet the same small allocation of coins.

Some listeners were enthusiastic, considering the meteoric rise in value that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin since they launched. “I found it to be a very unique opportunity,” said Diksha Rustagi. “You can probably earn a lot from Worldcoin in the future.” Others were more cautious, including a woman who goes by Chaitra R, who hung at the back of the classroom as her fellow students signed up. “I have a lot of doubts,” she said. “We would like to know how it’s going to help us.”

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