Technicalities

BOOKMARK BENCHMARK. The Library of Congress' Web site (www.loc.gov) has reached a milestone: It now gets about 2 million hits a day, matching the number of people who physically visit the library each year. Staff members have been working for more than a decade digitizing books, maps, manuscripts, recordings and other materials for display and download via the Web ' and their success can be seen in those millions of hits. But with roughly 22 million items available, they still have a ways to go. The library, the world's largest, has more than 130 million items: more than 29 million books and other print materials, 2.7 million recordings, 12 million photographs, 4.8 million maps and 58 million manuscripts. And it collects more each day. So although you can get a lot from the Web site, you can still get a lot more in person ' and we're not just talking about the materials themselves. Here and there on the Web site, you can see pictures of the library's impressive interior, which is one more reason to physically get up and go. No matter how beautiful your browser, it's just not the same.

DIGGING THE CHIPS. The early word from Intel on its line of Penryn processors, due later this year, is that they'll add speed for heavy-bandwidth applications, 3-D rendering and imaging apps, among other things. That's all well and good ' ever-faster chips to support ever-more-bloated apps ' but we were curious about the name for the processors. Alas, it does not honor any legend, myth or forgotten member of the Round Table but, apparently, a town in California named after a Welsh seaport quarry town, Penrhyn. According to Wikipedia, the California town was founded by a Welshman who had worked at the quarry. Perhaps not a thrilling tale, but better than just giving the chip a number.

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