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Nvidia to Acquire Mellanox for $6.9B (nvidia.com)
400 points by vostok4 7 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 218 comments

This is interesting.

Mellanox has apparently been under activist investor pressure to reduce their R&D expenses and pay more dividends. And then there was the rumors that Intel were interested, but apparently Nvidia in the end offered more.

From a HPC perspective I think it's good Nvidia got the deal, Intel is already a quite dominating force in that market, and if they'd have gotten the deal it wouldn't have surprised me if they would just have sunsetted it in favor of their own Omni-Path (which they could then develop at a leisurely pace due to lack of competition).

Though as I have mentioned before, I do wonder about the long-term prospects for Infiniband as a technology. Modern high-end ethernet does many of the same things with RDMA (RoCE), though I believe IB still has a latency advantage. And multipathing with ethernet is weird, seems both Trill and SPB are kind of dead, and most players seem to do multipathing at the L3 level (which might not be good for latency?). And in contrast to ethernet, IB is pretty much a single-player technology nowadays, so is the market big enough to bear the R&D costs to keep developing it?

At least for a commodity chip like Broadcom Tomahawk (100G), the latency is 500ns with L3 enabled, and 300ns if only L2 is enabled. Compared to the Mellanox SB7700 at 90ns ethernet has some catching up to do if latency is the end goal.

Ethernet tooling for HPC has a ways to go, but I suspect in the future it will be more competitive. Especially if specialty fabric vendors cut down on R&D.

CLOS fabric designs seem to be winning the war these days which I think favors Ethernet in the long run. Better flow distribution on aggregate links and now widespread support for MC-LAG means you can build a really wide CLOS network with L2-only.

You're comparing apples and oranges. Mellanox has Ethernet switches with 300ns L3 latencies -- far lower than their broadcom counterparts. So it's not an Ethernet limitation, but a broadcom limitation.

Do keep in mind that having 300ns L3 latencies comes with it's own set of problems. Even at 10Gbit 300ns is not enough to get a packet through an electrical connection. Plus they also have some 90ns latency products.

That means that these switches, while fast, cannot check the packets for correctness (they don't have the full packet). That they will have "aborted" packets. That in some important ways these networks have the problems of the "half-duplex" networks of old.

Broadcom focuses on features for packet transmission. That means these Mellanox switches are pretty much restricted to situations where you want to have a set of servers on a single network segment and nothing else (not even an upstream connection). If that's exactly what you need, great. But mostly you're going to need more.

If you have so many CRC errors that cut-through bothers you, you might want to investigate why your cabling is so damaged.

Your information may be old; Mellanox has pretty much the same feature set as Broadcom now.

With Mellanox ethernet switches, you lose some other features in exchange for lower latency. i.e. you can only break out 16 ports to 4x25G on a 100G switch (64 25G ports).

And you also get some benefits: enough internal bandwidth to allow every input port to cut through at line rate, and a single buffer to prevent starvation (the tomahawk chip has 4 groups of ports, each with a separate buffer).

Also, you can run cumulus on the switch, which is pretty awesome.

CLOS fabric topology is the most common deployment with IB, so I'm not sure how that plays into the hands of ethernet?

But yes, seems EVPN + VXLAN is the way the industry is going nowadays to build eth CLOS fabrics, whereas Trill & SPB seem more or less dead, for some reason.

Everybody is saying ethernet is simpler to manage than IB, but IME at least for HPC the opposite is true. IB is more or less plug and play, you get RDMA, multipathing etc. all right out the box. Whereas if you'd set up an equivalent thing with ethernet, you'd have to set up DCB, RoCEv2, EVPN+VXLAN+BGP (or something equivalent).

While I agree about Intel's market force, they have a much better open source software story than nvidia. Nvidia is as closed as the other big player, Broadcom.

I had similar hopes when Intel acquired Altera, however think Intel managed to completely botch that acquisition. I now believe Intels going through a phase where they seem to be struggling to get things out of the door on time (like 10nm, Optane, Xeon Phis, Drones, Nervana, Edison...). At a time where AMD seems to be credibly challenging Intel for the first time in over a decade, any non x86 efforts will likely end up as a side hobby and not get the attention/investment from Intel management that it deserves. As a result I am glad Mellanox did not end up at Intel.

There is a lot of heavily patent/trade secret encumbered IP in both graphics and compute drivers, making open source extremely difficult. Above that layer I've found Nvidia extremely open.

Intel is far worse to deal with, and additionally engages in anti-competitive architectural wars, preventing other vendors from interfacing with the CPU bus.

As a result we have NVLink, and now we will soon have official IB cards with NVLink ports, and probably ARM cores too.

>There is a lot of heavily patent/trade secret encumbered IP in both graphics and compute drivers, making open source extremely difficult. Above that layer I've found Nvidia extremely open. >Intel is far worse to deal with

Huh? Nvidia is by far the worst option when it comes to GPUs if you want to run Linux. Both Intel and AMD manage to have excellent open source drivers, while Nvidia's is a proprietary mess that everyone complains about and doesn't work all that great with typical distro update mechanisms.

We have been moving away from IB for our platform (algorithmic trading) since Ethernet now has almost comparable latency and is a lot easier to understand and manage.

Latency really isn't comparable, but now probably isn't an issue for algorithmic trading. Still many other closely coupled codes for which it dominates cluster performance.

IB is actually easier to reason about and debug than DCE, but obviously a different community of practice.

Understand, manage, and buy networking equipment for. Infiniband is a thing of the past, especially with the Mellanox VPI adapters that support both Ethernet and Infiniband with a single bit flipped on the adapter.

IDK, IME IB is pretty much plug and play in an HPC setting. Plain ethernet is too, sure, but if you want to do HPC type workloads you'll have to do a lot of configuration and testing to setup DCB, RoCEv2, EVPN+VXLAN+BGP or such.

But I think this is the way the market is going in the longer term.

It is, but if you're a large enough company to be buying millions of dollars in adapters and switches, reading a guide from Mellanox to turn on DCB should be fairly seamless. RoCEv2 is API-compatible with IB for the most part, so there is really no configuration on that layer. The other pieces -- not really sure what you're getting at. Most of those are for going across data centers, which IB won't do anyways. At least Ethernet would give you the option to run RDMA from the east coast to the west coast.

> The other pieces -- not really sure what you're getting at.

What I'm getting at is setting up clusters larger than what you can fit behind a single switch. So you'll want e.g. a CLOS fabric with multipathing (the typical IB setup, FWIW). As Trill and SPB seem pretty dead, it seems the momentum is to do the multipathing at the L3 level, using the aforementioned EPVN+VXLAN+BGP, or something similar.

You really don't need EVPN+VXLAN though. (And if you do need it I recommend finding a way to not need it.)

You mean you have separate subnets for each leaf switch, and then BGP or such for multipath routing between the leaf and spines? Sure, but what about subnet-level services like DHCP & PXE? Sounds cumbersome if you have to replicate that across all your leaf switches?

Or maybe you could do one "provisioning and admin" VLAN that spans the entire cluster and which uses spanning tree, and then the high-performance RDMA stuff uses the per-leaf VLAN's and L3 multipath routing? Is that simpler and better performing that EVPN + VXLAN?

What is the routing latency on such BGP setups BTW? I find it hard to image you can get even close to eth (not to mention IB!) L2 latencies? Or can the fast paths be done in hw (or FPGA's)?

Yes, a subnet per rack is a best practice. Often people DHCP & PXE over the 1G out-of-band network which is dumb L2.

In most ASICs everything is the same latency since packets go through the whole pipeline whether they use all the functionality or not. Anyway, the latency of plain routing would have to be equal or faster than VXLAN encap + routing.

May I ask what’s IB?

infiniband - The high performance interconnect by Mellanox

Infiniband is actually a standard and Mellanox became the go to supplier. However in the early stages there were many more suppliers.

Intel bought one of the IB players and for all I know killed it.

Intel bought Qlogic, made some proprietary enhancements to their IB tech, which they now sell under the omni-path brand.

By Voltaire, the infiniband company acquired by mellanox :)

Their ethernet accelerator VMA stands for "Voltaire Messaging Accelerator".

IIRC Mellanox was always doing Infiniband; they made the hardware and Voltaire wrote the drivers (before people understood open source and created OFED).

Mellanox made the HCAs (aka network cards) and Voltaire made the switches. Mellanox had their own drivers and their own MOFED (their incompatible fork of openfabrics upstream OFED with Mellanox specific enhancements).

We just pulled a Voltaire switch from our data center. They definitely made hardware. Or at least put their name on it.

A similarly interesting fact is that Starboard Value, the activist fund had tried to get Mellanox join with Marvell another company in its portfolio. But Marvell was rebuffed.

Later Marvell went on to acquire Cavium for 6 billion dollars with aim to build an infrastructure company. Though from the company's latest earnings release it seems that the deal isn't really a good one.

Mellanox is big in high-end Ethernet equipment as well which is growing faster than the Infiniband business, obviously a key technology for cloud providers.

According to https://www.nextplatform.com/2018/11/02/datacenter-25g-ether... the ethernet part of the business is actually already much bigger than the IB business.

Intel already have the high-performance interconnect they acquired from Cray (Aries) and now sell as "OmniPath". Not sure how that sells head-to-head vs. InfiniBand though. IB obviously has a lot more legacy presence in HPC data centers.

Edit: sorry somehow glossed over your mention of OmniPath, didn't mean to restate what you already said.

I had great respect for Mellanox when I came to know that they invented InfiniBand.

Again, I am suprisied it’s valued at only $6.9Bn.

Pardon my ignorance, but how come mobile apps and websites get valued for 10+ or 20+ Bn dollars , while someone who creates real technology is valued at only $6.9Bn

> Pardon my ignorance, but how come mobile apps and websites get valued for 10+ or 20+ Bn dollars , while someone who creates real technology is valued at only $6.9Bn

Imagine a building, say a shopping center, airport, or a city main square, that gets the same amount of visitors per day as some of those apps, and it might start to make more sense. Take Clash of Clans for example, valued at $10 billion. It has around 100 million daily active players. One of the busiest airports, the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, has 104 million passengers annually. NY Times square receives about fifty million visitors per year.

If something, anything, gets 100 million visitors PER DAY, the value of such a real estate, even if digital, is immense.

It is worth adding that the margin out of an app tends to be A LOT higher than shopping centers, airport, etc while the initial capital tends to be a fraction of it.

There are also different ways in which you can use the data to help you create another app with high daily active players. An app can have the whole world as their oyster, unlike shopping centers, etc.

It's worth adding, too, that the airport and building take much larger capital expenditures to build and are far less reproducible as a result... and will probably have decades or centuries of future revenue. For a given game, that's probably a few years of peak popularity and comparatively easy to replicate by competitors.

To the point of this article, it's kind of surprising to me at least that licensing companies like ARM and Qualcomm have been so much more successful than Mellanox.

A facility like an airport has a monopoly position, geographically and due to regulation, and the capital cost of competition, and as you say will likely be earning for many decades. ARM also has a long term monopoly, think of the sheer weight of code for ARM devices. It takes huge capital to produce a new from scratch CPU arch, esp due to patent problems (which makes RISC V all the more amazing), and deep pockets to start producing chips at scale, build a developer ecosystem etc. Games titles can produce a lot of cash for low CAPEX, but I don't think we'll be hearing about Fortnite in 5 years, let alone 50.

In contrast, Mellanox produces a niche product. It is critical to HPC and some deep pocketed finance people, but it is never going to be at the volume of e.g. ethernet.

The long term aspect is that, as Moore's law scaling becomes harder and harder, distributed computation becomes more essential. Right now we are in a dip in peak compute rate requirements, because we have invented battery powered computers and 4G, and hence cloud. But the work done in the cloud isn't very taxing, mainly single threaded. But I'm confident we'll soon be seeing a lot heavier parallel computation in the cloud soon, and stuff that won't fit into one or four GPUs. The tradeoffs between PCIe and IB after 4*16x start to favour IB, especially if the IB silicon is on the NVLink switch complex. So from the perspective of integration bringing much greater IB volume, the acquisition multiples the worth of MLNX by an order of magnitude -- if nVidia can execute.

The digital airport comparison is such a great way of wrapping my mind around the concept of high valuations for digital commerce - it's business without the usual B&M overhead.

A lot of IB technology is based on precursors like Myrinet, Quadrics, etc. Those companies were driven from the HPC market and the top500 by Mellanox in the last 15 years. It is arguable that IB won simply because it had better marketing, and a lot more venture capitol behind it.

At one point, 6 of the top 10 supercomputers in the top 500 were interconnected with Quadrics, and over 1/3 with Myrinet. However, both Quadrics and Myricom are both long gone. And neither of them sold for anything close to $6.9B

IB has been doubling in bandwidth with every release, 10,20,50,100 and now 200G. Those other interconnect technologies did not do that.

Honestly, they competed on price & marketing at first. The handwriting was already on the wall for these companies long before IB had any real advantage on speed. We were all limited by PCIe bandwidth, after all. So no matter what the link speed is, you're not going to get more bandwidth than what PCIe can provide.

I worked for Myricom when Mellanox was starting out with IB. I recall stories from that time of customers that would try IB for something like 1/2 to 1/3 of what we charged. But they could never get it to work, and ripped it out and installed Myrinet. Sadly, this made our management smug. Mellanox eventually ate their lunch because we never responded to their marketing and pricing war.

At one point it seems Myrinet was as dominant as Mellanox is now. It was very exciting at the time to get something better than ethernet, and way cheaper than SGI. Huge resistance from the developers who were used to ethernet, which still hasn't gone away.

I don't think it was just the price or marketing (although Mellanox at least had sales people -- never heard from anyone at Myricom even after buying $$ of gear). Mellanox always seemed to be pushing the envelope, which might have been more R&D dollars. Never had problems with IB not working (CX-4 and up) but I guess the gremlins depend on scale.

Because the total addressable market for consumer mobile apps, and therefore potential dollars of revenue is much higher than for Mellanox with Infiniband - which by contrast is only the HPC market at this point.

> how come mobile apps and websites get valued

Can you name many apps and websites that closed (aka IPO or sold, not funding round) at 10+/20+ billion? Unless you're going to go for the stupid "uber is an android app my kid could could make for their senior project" shtick, I think most 10b+ apps are backed by _real_ technology

Snapchat? (IPO valuation of 33 B)

(Not interested in playing the no true technology game, just pointing out that snapchat is the highly valued mobile app that comes to my mind)

sorry, I should have moved the end of my comment ("are backed by _real_ technology") to the end of my first statement.

WhatsApp ~$22B acquisition by Facebook. LinkedIn ~$26B acquisition by Microsoft. Those are two that I can think of from memory.

Ah, I see. Not only do you have to have made solid technology, it should not be delivered through an app or website. I didn't realize those were the goalposts.

(https://engineering.linkedin.com/open-source as as starting point)

I'm not agreeing with OP's assumption that there isn't any tech in apps or websites. I'm just giving you examples so that you can stop wasting your time with the least charitable interpretation of OP's point and actually respond to what he might have meant.

LinkedIn - $23Bn.

What's always blown my mind is Apple's acquisition of PA-Semi for less than $300 million. Apple is so far ahead of other phone makers in CPU performance that I would struggle to name another instance where there was such a big performance gap between competitors in the same market. I'm sure that Apple invested a lot in its chip design team since then, but the initial acquisition cost was tiny compared to the result.

Their acquisition of Intrinsity (designers of the Apple A4 SoC) may have been even more of a steal, with estimates placing the price somewhere in the $50-150M range.

"real technology" is not an objective measurement of societal value.

Except yes it is, because all these software apps are built on prior “real technology” and would be impossible without it. The flow of capital just doesn’t reflect that (and it’s not clear it should).

But Mellanox is making niche equipment. You don't need an Infiniband interconnect if 10-Gig Ethernet will do the job. Only densely "coupled" problems, where the answer calculated on one core affects the answer calculated everywhere, need that kind of ultra-high-end interconnect. Your typical app scales very nicely across a bunch of servers connected with commodity networking.

This is more like a race car company not being as valuable as Toyota. Yes, the technology of the race car is unbelievable, but there are only a few thousand race cars in the whole world and there's a Toyota in every household.

Wait another thousand years, and tell us that again.

Market values profit, not produced value (i.e. revenue).

That's not true - see Amazon. Public markets value and price future potential profit.

Essentially it's true, the market values each companies stream of future earnings out to infinity, discounted back for time to present day value.

The market just has a big dissonance in how it estimates and discounts those future earnings. Amazon is seen as a future huge profit maker, while Apple is viewed as perpetually at risk of a large scale decline in it's recent profitability.

There were a lot of companies involved in Infiniband early on, not least of them Intel.

Where's the room for growth in Infiniband? Why wouldn't you just use Ethernet in future projects?

Interesting. Since Mellanox is a big player in the HPC world, this means Nvidia wants to get more serious there. Due to Nvidia's bad Linux support and pricing (compared to AMD), I know quite a number of academic computing centers which like Mellanox hardware but avoid Nvidia hardware like the plague.

Modern HPC is being done with the Nvidia toolkits.

Sure, the Nvidia driver is closed-source and a pain to work with for OS developers, but for the use-cases it's designed for (CUDA etc), it's far and away the best-in-class on Linux.

To my knowledge, there are no systems in the TOP500 running AMD chips or GPUs. Intel has some competition in the CPU space (POWER series, some ARM, etc) but if GPUs are in those systems, they're Nvidia.

> Sure, the Nvidia driver is closed-source and a pain to work with for OS developers, but for the use-cases it's designed for (CUDA etc), it's far and away the best-in-class on Linux.

It's unfortunately a sad truth.

CUDA won, And is now the de-factor standard for almost every application that run over GPU. Nvidia succeeded to jailed the entire HPC community to their bloated, badly maintained crappy software stack and this is very regrettable.

Any admin / integrator that had to deal with NVidia bloatwares under Linux hate it, and for very good reasons.

My GTX 1080 works flawlessly with Linux, as has any other NVIDIA graphics card I've ever owned (GTX 680, 480). The only time I tried an AMD card it was a complete dumpster fire, nothing worked (the open source driver at the time sucked and the proprietary driver wouldn't install properly). I bought the AMD card based on the myth that AMD has better linux support...

Ahh what are you talking about? That "myth" didn't exist until the open source drivers really started working.

Biggest issue with AMD on Linux right now is that they sometimes seem to forget to fully enable support in patches before release. Like the RX 590 had to have firmware updates post release because they forgot to do everything I guess.

nVidia GPUs were always recommended over AMD because their support was significantly better before the mainoine Radeon/Radeon si/amdgpu drivers really started being great. nVidia will still run better now, but the benefit of the open source driver ecosystem out weighs that for me.

I am still waiting that benefit to provide the missing OpenGL and hardware video acceleration features that were never ported from fxglr.

I think most user's complaint is that their drivers aren't open source and until recently were a pain to install. My 1050ti has also worked pretty much flawlessly, but I wish they would open source their drivers and make it easier on the linux developers.

Trying to get a 1070 set up w/ 2 monitors on a laptop with hybrid graphics is a nightmare. 1 display driven by intel, 1 by nvidia. Cannot get both screens working without 2 Xscreens. Xinerama wouldn't work w. proprietary drivers. Nouveau has like no support for like 1050 up.

Wanted to try out SwayWM, but they don't work around how nvidia handles things in comparison to what everyone else does.

Works in Ubuntu, but could not for the life of me get 2 monitors working in Arch.

Maybe just maybe this is not the fault of Nvidia but due to the fact that large parts of the Linux ecosystem are fragile, time consuming to configure and break if you look at them in the wrong way. Professional linux distributions like Ubuntu paper over a lot of that fragility, whereas in Arch Linux you can easily burn days getting basic functionality to work (multiple sound cards come to mind) only for it to break with the next update. And yes I speak from experience, I used Arch Linux ~5 years basically for the fun of doing everything by yourself, because Ubuntu felt too restrictive and opaque.

> Maybe just maybe this is not the fault of Nvidia but due to the fact that large parts of the Linux ecosystem are fragile, time consuming to configure and break if you look at them in the wrong way.

How it works with open source drivers is that you main-line your drivers so that the kernel maintainer maintain the drivers for you, for free. Choosing to keep your drivers closed source means committing to keeping your drivers up-to-date with changes in the kernel, or writing an open-source shim that does that. Which approach is more "fragile?"

I'm sorry but this is not how it works. No-one maintains your drivers for free. The contributors to drivers in the Linux kernel are usually employed by the companies that make the product. In addition they might have to deal with subsystem maintainers that treat their part of the code base as their personal fiefdom. Just follow the hoops that the AMD developers had to jump through so that their driver components got accepted into the kernel. Basically they were told they were doing it all wrong and should really be using abstractions already in place, which were probably developed by Intel in order to get their graphics stack to work (https://lists.freedesktop.org/archives/dri-devel/2016-Decemb...). Imagine being treated like that while you also need to support two much larger platforms (consoles, windows and ideally a simulation backend for hardware development). Nvidia wisely decided to develop one driver stack to cover all of these platforms, while as far as I know AMD split their effort for a long time. Nvidia also had by far the highest quality OpenGL implementation in place (not sure about Vulkan).

Graphics card drivers happen to be very complex beasts, somewhere along the stack they do need a compiler for multiple custom and often proprietary architectures, which most definitely no-one will maintain for free for you. There is a huge incentive to keep most of the code platform independent and only maintain a minimal kernel specific component. This part of the code base is a comparatively trivial part, essentially the kernel should get out of the way as much as possible. The kernel specific abstractions like KMS are examples of such comparatively trivial things.

"Maintain" was too broad for what I meant: I should have said they'll future-proof your driver. Any future changes to the kernel won't break your mainlined driver - this is what you get for free, not defect fixes or other types of refactors. What you get for free is your driver working with all future kernel releases at the time of release; unlike Nvidia's drivers which lag kernel releases.

> How it works with open source drivers is that you main-line your drivers so that the kernel maintainer maintain the drivers for you, for free.

Not sure what do you mean by "maintain for free". Full coverage testing is not free.

Try doing a PCI passthrough to virtualizes that 1080 onto a VM. Then try the same thing with AMD. Sure, the AMD drivers are relatively terrible, but at least they are open source and don't kick you in the knees when you are doing something you ought to be able to do.

Well this is not a supported feature even on Windows (AFAIK), so I'm not sure why this is an issue for you? See here for a list of supported graphics cards https://docs.nvidia.com/grid/latest/grid-vgpu-user-guide/ind.... Notice how there is no distinction between Windows and Linux. The 1080 is supported perfectly by nvidia-docker though.

There's no reason the hardware can't do it, the driver actively attempts to see if you're on a VM and refuses to talk to the hardware if so. Google "Nvidia error code 43" if you're curious, and some people like to virtualize a video game on their Linux dev PC.

This is not a purchase for gaming -- this is for the HPC market. Nvidia drivers on Linux for HPC work really well. Academia is a tiny, tiny fraction of the market.

nVidia's Tesla cards work relatively painless in HPC environments. When you install a supporting driver and set the cards' persistence mode to your needs, the rest is generally automagic.

However, they're hot and need serious juice to run, so you cannot just shove 36 of them to a rack and just power them on.

I had the opposite experience.

maybe they will finally opensource their gpu and cuda drivers and remove all the headaches from my life

I too wish dreams came true...

I did not see that coming.

At NetApp we were an early customer of Mellanox (I told the founder that their name sounded like a poison gas :-)) which Steve Kleiman claimed implemnted Infiniband in anger. It was a good technology for the clustering team. Later as they grew and diversified into ethernet switches we bought a couple of their big core switches at Blekko. And at the current company we use their 40g network adapters to connect to high speed SDR hardware.

So now they are going to be part of Nvidia.

I get that this helps Nvidia in being more data center centric, but does it help them build better machine learning architectures? It does seem to be the only system that benefits from custom hardware more than the cost of that hardware. It seems that loosely coupled shared nothing clusters are not good machine learning back ends.

State of the art deep learning models are becoming larger and larger and at some point it makes sense to distribute them over multiple GPUs because they would not fit into a single GPU's memory. At the same time training can be sped up dramatically by blowing up the mini batch size in a synchronized training regime, again requiring multiple GPUs. So the trend is towards "model parallelism" and "data parallelism" at the same time. Once you need more GPUs than you can put on a single PCI Express bus, you need a fast interconnect between servers. Infiniband seems to be the best solution at this time. Nvidia GPUs can already communicate ridiculously fast with remote GPUs via RDMA if there is an Infiniband connection. It makes a lot of sense for Nvidia to push into this direction to provide integrated solutions.

Nvidia GPUs already support RDMA directly from GPU to Infiniband NIC, bypassing the host completely. 100G is current, 200G is in the works. For lots of GPU workloads that don't rely on lots of little kernel launches, having a completely remote GPU is not out of the question.

If they want to continue building large GPU accelerated workloads, pairing more tightly with networking seems like an obvious move.

> .. NVIDIA’s invention of the GPU in 1999 ..

Well.. "almost every important company in the 3D area filed lawsuits against NVIDIA" :)


Thanks. Today I learned people could play 3D games (Quake2) at 25 fps at 1152x864 resolution (Nvidia TNT GPU, K6-2 300 Mhz CPU).

It would be interesting to know how other computing technologies looked like 20 years ago. Is there any good place to find that online?

Don't know the fps, but remember the graphics where awesome after getting a Voodoo2 card in '98 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3dfx_Interactive

SGI dominatinated the 3D graphics market until NVidia upended them. SGI sold whole integrated workstations while nVidia was an addon board coprocessor. A PC plus NVidia cost much less than a SGI workstation.

I would take a look at archive.org for gaming/hardware sites. Hardware sites used to be a huge thing back then, when every geek was drooling over the latest gear, whether it be CPUs, motherboards, network cards, sound cards (for real SB Live! Ftw!), gpus, etc.

Firingsquad was a big one- It was originally started by a guy who won John Carmack's ferrari in a quake tournament if I remember the story right: http://web.archive.org/web/19990101000000*/firingsquad.com

Others you may want to look at: AnandTech arstechnica tomshardware -really great coverage around intel's Rambus RDRAM debacle around 2000. sharkyextreme Aces Hardware- this site was really in depth for the time, but it updated infrequently before just stopping altogether around 2004. https://www.aceshardware.com/ Their stuff is still online.

Those were the main sites that I would check that I can remember...

I only know of Mellanox for their 10 gigabit ethernet cards. Does anybody know if this is a good or bad thing for Mellanox?

One out of only 2 vendors for InfiniBand which is quite important for HPC especially in the Top 500.

They also have some sort of a parallel VLIW CPU architecture that they've been trying to get off the ground for a while now called TILE/TILE64 so that might also play into things.

However since NVIDIA opened their offices in Israel a while ago they might simply be looking for an acquihire since Mellanox is a fabless semi chip maker it kinda fits that also.

I hope that it is more than an aqui-hire.

Mellanox has driven IB speeds for more than a decade, limited only by PCIe bandwidth. Since they've had NICs that do both IB and Ethernet, they've been driving the ethernet market as well. We've been using their 100G adapters since 2015 (when they were first to market by a big margin). Even today, there are only a handful of vendors that can deliver a 100g NIC. I worry that if Mellanox stops driving port speed, we'll see a slower increase in the speed of NICs due to the lack of competition (eg, 400g will take longer..).

Infiniband hasn't increased in speed in a while, while Ethernet has. IB is all but done since Ethernet 200 and 400Gbps will be out soon, and in fact, are already supported by Mellanox switches.

From what I understand the reason it hasn't increased is because primarily of PCIe, it is set to double in speed with PCIe 4.0 and again with 5.0 once those are made more available with maximum speeds of 1.6 and 4.0 TB for IB x16.

IB still has lower latency than Ethernet at least on paper especially when it comes to RDMA but I don't know how much of an issue that is for these applications.

But overall I'm not sure how much it matters to Mellanox since they are also the ones who are making the high speed Ethernet switches and host adapters.

Yup, but that's exactly why IB isn't too relevant anymore. Ethernet had plenty of time to catch up because of PCIe-SIG and Intel dragging their feet.

It doesn’t matter nearly all Mellanox ASICs support both IB and Ethernet they are the ones who are driving the speed of Ethernet to this level.

You also need to use their cables and transceivers (or a similar alternative) for these speeds doesn’t matter if you are using Ethernet or IB.

You can use non-mellanox cables for ethernet. IB there aren't really other options.

The last new TILE architecture chip shipped over 5 years ago and Linux dropped support for the architecture completely last year.

TILE64 got squeezed at both ends, with GPUs becoming more capable on one side and CPUs getting lots of cores (Threadripper) on the other. The niche just closed up on them.

Tilera was acquired by EZChip in 2014 and then in turn EZChip were acquired by Mellanox - the Tile arch kind of died from lack of attention during that process.

I had a TileGX dev board and ported our product at the time (nearly 10 years ago). It was an ok arch but that’s a tough niche to fight for.

That'd be a lot of money for an aquihire. Are you aware of any other aquihire's in the billion dollar range?

Don't think so, but they do have like 3000 employees mainly in Israel and design a wide range of ASICs I doubt that they got them for the InfiniBand and their interconnect business alone.

Oh. I've known about TILE64 back when Tilera created it (I spoke to their VP of something or other on the phone once, I worked in telecoms at the time and we were interested in seeing if their hardware would help accelerate something we worked on. We never went forward with it though), I hadn't realised Mellanox owned it now. Looking at wikipedia, Tilera was bought by EZChip, which was bought by Mellanox.

I think Mellanox is moving away from the Tilera architecture in favor of re-using the mesh interconnect with ARM cores, as in their BlueField chip.

Could be, but their mesh fabric might be useful for some multi-GPU configurations especially if NVIDIA goes into chiplets, I don't know if it's better than NVLINK or not but since NVLINK looks to be pretty much PCIe with a lot of the overhead stripped out of it it just might be.

The 10g NICs are toys. ;-) Mellanox provides high speed (40/56/100/200 gigabit) switches and adapters. If you think 10g fiber is big, just wait...

I’ve worked on several projects with them, and found they generally do a good job of feeding the beast when the OS and driver’s are properly tuned.

I’m not informed enough to call good or bad, but will instead say it’s interesting, especially in the HPC space (and the emerging AI space).

Can confirm, running 100g mellanox and getting ready to move to 200. They are the best game in town for the price point to performance/reliability/support ratio.

Last I was looking you could get a 40GB card for around $300. Very impressive price that kind of speed in a home office.

On Ebay you can grab these cards for just $30. 100G is available for less than $200

Or at least knockoffs with potential back doors.

I use Mellanox ConnectX-5 Dual QSFP+ 100Gbit Ethernet cards in my OpenStack private cloud at my business. Mellanox has been instrumental in running flash Ceph arrays by pushing the speed envelope beyond what the Intel/Cisco's of the world are doing.

Mellanox has also embraced bringing RDMA to things like Ceph and working with the broader vendor ecosystem like Red Hat for using this in production.

I hope Nvidia doesn't taint the good reputation of this company.

Plumpy "enterprise" customers.

They still are the company to go for infiniband, but infiniband it lost much of its appeal to non true supercomputing tasks.

Ethernet nowadays can do RDMA, soft guarantees on latency, in-order and reliable delivery at lower costs, and an option to reuse existing L2 networks. Mellanix has squeezed the infiniband cow dry.

> Ethernet nowadays can do RDMA, soft guarantees on latency, in-order and reliable delivery at lower costs, and an option to reuse existing L2 networks. Mellanix has squeezed the infiniband cow dry.

And who did the Ethernet RDMA protocol (RoCEv1/v2) and sell the RDMA compatible NIC that everyone use in the HPC world currently ?

Tip: It is starting by Mella too.

RDMA is an interesting point because QLogic was doing some stuff then Cavium bought them then Marvell bought them. And then there's the Emulex-Avago-Broadcom chain. The entire market is converging into a few major players.

And yet an ethernet frame, by design, is larger than an infiniband frame (think layer 2). When it comes down to node to node latency, given perfectly equal silicon, infiniband will still be faster.

I think the minimum size of an IB packet with no payload is 26 octets, vs. 64 octets for an eth packet. So sure, a difference of 38 octets, but at, say, 100 Gbit/s, that's less than a nanosecond difference, much much less than the IB vs. ethernet latency difference. So I think you'll have to look somewhere else for information.

I have no idea what it is, actually. Some ideas that may or may not matter (or might not even be correct):

- IB is a couple of decades younger, so could benefit from knowledge how to do fast protocols. (Not an explanation per se)

- Simpler forwarding. In IB the subnet manager gives out the LID's that are used for routing withing a subnet. They are shorter than an eth MAC (16 vs. 48 bits), so the lookups circuit in the switches can be smaller and faster(?), and also since the LID's are assigned by the subnet manager rather than being burned at the factory, they can be distributed taking into account the subnet topology, allowing switches to use LID Mask Count (LMC) filtering. Similarly, all routes within a subnet are calculated statically a priori by the subnet manager (load balancing among multiple paths is only static round robin, not dynamical load dependent), and don't have to be calculated on the fly by the switches.

- FEC rather than retransmission in case of corruption.

Sure, IB is simply is a superior fabric for its niche.

For everything else, RDMA on Ethernet buys you with ability to reuse your L2, and this matters way way more to people running DC businesses than anything else.

With nVidia's poor kernel record, I hope this does not adversely affect switchdev [1]. Hopefully one day we can run the same OS on servers and switches

[1] http://www.mellanox.com/page/products_dyn?product_family=262...

> Hopefully one day we can run the same OS on servers and switches.

You can do that today with Cumulus Linux, on Mellanox switches, no less. Switches from other manufacturers as well: https://cumulusnetworks.com/hcl

switchdev is currently dormant. None of the silicon vendors seem to be willing to put the work in, so there's no adoption from the SDN/NOS space. We are still stuck with HALs.

Also, there are multiple solutions to run Linux on switches, most notably Cumulus Linux and VyOS

switchdev doesn't look too dormant: https://github.com/mellanox/mlxsw/wiki

Mellanox are also known for their excellent support on FreeBSD. And Nvidia is not known for anything related to "Open" or "Free".

I just hope Nvidia would not change much to the company. For example Netflix's Open Appliance, if I remember correctly were running on FreeBSD + Mellanox 100Gb NIC. All because of their top notch FreeBSD Drivers.

As and outsider, can someone explain the "synergy" (god I hate that word) for the companies? It looks like Mellanox is primarily a network equipment company. What is the "fit" for that within a graphics/AI chip producer?

Communication is a key bottleneck. Modern supercomputers budget roughly half to interconnect. Nvidia invested heavily in developing NVLINK to be able to make GPUs communicate at the bandwidth necessary to make multi-GPU boxes more practical (e.g. DGX-1). To make it scale out across multiple boxes, you need a high bandwidth, low latency interconnect, which is where IB comes in.

If you want to run a computation on more than one of those AI (and scientific linear algebra) chips, you need some network to connect them. The higher the bandwidth and the lower the latency of that network, the less likely the network performance limits total system performance. See NVLink as an example of Nvidia’s related work. (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/NVLink)

Been using second-hand, old-gen Infiniband (ransacked from eBay) for many years now, instead of the more expensive 10GigE products (both at home and client businesses). Absolutely love 'em. Their latency and simplicity rock.

Commentary on where this might be going: https://forums.servethehome.com/index.php?threads/nvidia-to-...

The answer: GPUoF like NVMeoF

This seems like way too much for Mellanox. I remember talking to the Nvidia guys at Supercomputing 2008 about Remote Direct Memory Acess on their cards. Huge to have their cards direct connected to the network.

So, intel took over qlogic, now fabless(!) nvidia takes over mellanox /o\. Is there some real "normal" manufacturer of fast cards like IB, 40+geth left? By normal I mean manufacturer without management doing stunt tricks and pissing off own customers (like intel and nvidia does). Please please, tell me this isn't HBA appocalypse :D (i do own 2 IB cards from "intel", guess what - it's almost completely unsupported so i just cant use them)

Broadcom? Chelsio? Marvell FastLinQ?

How bad is it that Intel didn't win?

If Intel had one, they would have further consolidated their hold on the HPC/Supercomputer market. Summit is an interesting supercomputer because it's NVidia/Mellanox/IBM instead of the Intel hegemony that Cori II was, iirc the interconnect for Cori was from Cray.

Now NVidia only needs to buy Xilinx...

No way. Xilinx is way too expensive already.

There were only ever two major Infiniband vendors: QLogic and Mellanox. Intel already bought QLogic back in 2012.

I'm not sure it would be in anyone's interest for both to be acquired by Intel, even if IB isn't very relevant anymore outside of supercomputing.

Intel bought QLogic's Infiniband assets in 2012, not everything.

> Intel already bought QLogic back in 2012.

Cavium bought QLogic in 2016, Marvell in turn bought Cavium in 2018.

It is remarkable they were outbid.

This acquisition has big implications for HPC in particular.

Yeah, Intel is just a bit over 2x the size of Nvidia, and yet they were outbid... to me this is like Apple not being willing to buy Waze and letting them go to Google. Think of what improvement it could have made on Apple maps.

Not that bad - intel already has an arguably strong networking department and recently purchased Altera for their FPGA tech. This is why above comments mention the benefits of nVidia purchasing Xilinx - one of the only other serious producers of cutting edge FPGA hardware - which happens to be what makes or breaks most high-throughput networking tech.

But now Nvidia is only a single HPC worthy Arm CPU away from owning all the juicy bits of a HPC: they have the GPUs, now the networking, all they need is the CPUs... vertical integration has its perks.

Yeah - I think this potential next step for nVidia has both good and bad intentions for the world of HPC. However, it'll be interesting to see how they compete with the existing "NetFPGA" open source project. They've essentially been building purpose-built offerings analogous to Intel's recently announced "Intel FPGA Programmable Acceleration Card N3000".

IMO, more of the issues with these advanced networking protocols is latency - something that is usually more addressable via protocol dev than just hardware. Would be very interesting to see nVidia try to acquire Xilinx and supercharge their "Aurora" low overhead transfer protocol...




Xilinx is badly overpriced, no matter how you look at it. You could compare its P/E to similar semiconductor companies, you could compare it to all US companies, you could even look at the predicted P/E growth and it's still overpriced. Every analyst I am aware of currently advises you stay away from XLNX.

> Xilinx is badly overpriced, no matter how you look at it.

Is it, really?

FPGA's are now all over HPC, the 5G rollout is going to put a LOT of really expensive FPGA's in new towers, and high-end networking gear is about to get a bump due to PCI going up.

I don't know how much damage the Intel acquisition did to Altera, but if Altera has been AWOL with big customers due to the Intel acquisition, Xilinx may have a massive amount of customer wins locked in for a very long time.

I wish Xilinx would die in a hot flaming pit of Hell for many and various reasons, but they are the 500lb gorilla of FPGAs.

Well, let's look at numbers, shall we? XLNX P/E is 37, INTC P/E is 12, MRVL P/E is 22.8, AVGO is 23.19, the current S&P 500 PE is 21.34. Of course P/E is just one number but it's certainly one important number. Do you have a better comparison that makes XLNX at this price an alluring stock?

My original comment reacted to nVidia acquiring Xilinx and I am trying to explain why that won't happen: it's too expensive.

As someone on the sidelines I can confirm that dev boards / most Xilinx products seem to have markedly hire price tags than comparable products from competitors...

The market for HPC is consolidating.

I can't wait for Mellanox RDMA to only work with Nvidia GPUs /s

Interesting fact, Mellanox is an employer of Palestinian programmers in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. Sort of a mixed blessing, cheap labor without other options because of the occupation, but real opportunities and a more educated and well off population will be more effective at advocating for its rights:


I love the spin you put on it. Palestinian programmers make no less than Israeli programmers in the Israeli high technology sector. In fact, that goes for all jobs in the Israeli high-tech sector, from PMs to HR, CTOs.

Furthermore, Palestinians in the West bank regularly talk to me about their situation, because I'm what you would call a "settler" and I buy in their towns, and I pick them up hitchhiking, and I talk to them with no borders. They all have family in Jordan and will happily tell you how much better their "occupied" life is than their Jordanian family. And yes, I've been to Jordan and I've been to Egypt and I've been to Lebanon (albeit in uniform on that one).

Dislike Israel's policies as much as you want, I'm unhappy with many of them as well. Hate our PM, you'll find good reason to. But there is no need to lie or put spin on the fact that 99% of Israelis have no qualm with Palestinians or pay them less for equal labour. Likewise, 99% of Palestinians have no qualm with Israel or Israelis, and want (like us) to work hard, come home and love our children, and live in peace with our neighbours.

I'm palestinian and have family in the West bank and Gaza. What you're saying isn't true at all.

Funnily enough, I also have family in Jordan. Let me tell you, their lives are much better than those under Israeli occupation.

I would appreciate your perspective. I'm sure that many posters here would as well.

Another poster here did mention that the fine article mentions that Mellanox can hire three Palestinians for the price of one Israeli. That is not typical of the Israeli high tech sector. It _is_ typical of some other labour markets, notably building and agriculture.

Note that I'm specifically referring to the West Bank. I'm sure that the situation in Gaza is so much worse that in my worst dreams I cannot imagine it. From where are your family? I'm in Eshkolot, in the south Hebron hills, right next to Al-Ramadin.

I'm in the same position. This person is off their rocker.

Please don't call names. That's a sure way to ignite a tinderbox, and a flamewar will do none of us any good. Scorched earth is all the same.

Even if completely wrong, the GP is pretty clearly posting in good faith (as you are too, I'm sure).

As an alternative, sharing some details of your position would be more interesting and helpful. Only if you want to, of course.

I mean that directly contradicts the subtitle of this article:

> "For the price of one Israeli engineer, an [Israeli] company can hire three Palestinians in the West Bank"

If you reflect a little, I'm sure that you can backtrack that claim that only 1% of Israelis and Palestinians have qualm with each others. Every country has more bigots than 1%.

If you look at Israeli public opinion polls from past ten years or so, you get very different view. 30% feel hatred when they hear Arab spoken in the street, 50% say they would refuse to work at a job where direct supervisor was an Arab.

I am an Israeli citizens and worked under an Arabic speaking supervisor as a programmer, didn't have any problems with that. Not sure if these numbers are correct - polls can be manipulated in many subtle ways, polls in Israel have a bad track records in terms of accuracy.

> I am an Israeli citizens and worked under an Arabic speaking supervisor as a programmer, didn't have any problems with that.

I'm sure your are aware that you didn't give a counterargument.

I questioned the validity of polls in Israel, if you noticed. Can expand on that: the population is very fragmented and you can manipulate the poll by the way that a question is framed for instance, by the selection of persons polled, lots if variables that also tend to be abused in one way or another. They can't even get the exit polls right, seriously!

How about the the elections, local and state, and how the politicians talk to get support. People are honest when they vote.

Maybe moderate people support bigoted politicians for some reason and politicians think that bigotry gets votes, I don't know. But it surely don't look good.

Moderate people did support extreme politicians. They accomplished the task by using good old fear tactics (which are especially effective, when actual rockets are flying at major cities and people get stabbed in the streets by people pronounching their will to destroy Israel) Now, we also have a very fragmented parlament which allowed some small parties (the ultra orthodocs) to be a linchpin for coalition building. They aligned themselves with the right, because they got the funds they wanted. (The last moderate leader with a chance of being PM, Tzipi Livni, refused paying them, while Netanyahu didn't. Since then, Netanyahu crippled the Free press with a multi thronged attack. Aided by astronomical sums of money from Sheldon Adleson, created a free daily paper, which he directly controls. He focused his efforts as the minister of communications (he is actually not only the PM but the minister in a few other offices) to destroy a TV channel that was home to some very critical journalists. He managed to fragment the media to a huge amount of small players, reliant on government advertising(all in the name of making the media more democratic and free). After a very successful reform in the public broadcasting channel, done by Gilad Arden, one of his deputees, he learned that the reform didn't give him editorial power, He lamented that the reform was a mistake and tried to shutdown the public broadcasting authority. He is still working on it, he pulled his weight so no extra budget will be given to host the Eurovision competition, which we won last year (yay!) So now the channel either exceeds it's fixed budget, and he can 'prove' that public broadcasting is inefficient. Or the channel won't host the competition, which will make all Israelis hate the public broadcasting authority.... WinWin. Oh another example of him corrupting the israeli media was shown in the recent criminal inditment he is facing. Aledgedly he gave very preferential treatment for a Telco company in exchange for editorial control in a news website owned by the same owner of that Telco...

Using all of these new media channels under his absolute or partial control he galvanised the populus against the treacherous left, and perpetuated a very strong siege mentality (which us Jews are, understandably, prone to) while positioning himself as the only viable leader capable of fending off all those who wish to destroy Israel (which is easy, because there are plenty of people actually seeking that end) The last few years he really upped his game by talking directly to the public through Facebook and WhatsApp, (because the media is apparently against him ️...) And using much more crude language, a la Trump. This new media operation is managed by his son. He and his far right allies also orchestrate a public campaign against the so called left junta in the high court. This is done via his affiliated media, and by bringing about blatantly populist non 'constitutional' laws that the court rejects, which he can use as proof for the 'leftist' court. (We don't have a formal constitution, but we have something similar)

Similarly He also promotes the idea that a leftist junta is controlling the media, the police (after his appointed chief of police didn't curtail investigations against him) and all public beaurocrats. Oh and his son is posting antisemitic memes depicting Soros copied from the American alt right. So yeah, the israeli PM is using classic antisemetic tactics against the israeli left. (We live in weird times... :( )

But, The employment rates are high, TV is entertaining and the economy is stable, so most people can easily buy in the only Netanyahu can lead us.

So if you'd ask me a few years ago, I'd say people of Israel are moderate, but fearful for the lives. Since then, the constant hammering of propoganda is corroding some basic democratic values. Younger people are less moderate, and paradoxaly are more prone to the siege mentality (although Israel is stronger than ever military wise) and nationalistic chauvinism. So I don't know if the future is bright. We still have a vocal oposition, and a moderate (albeit leaderless) majority, so I hope when he leaves the scene we'll manage to come back to some sane discourse, but I won't bet on it.

Netanyahu is an extreme politician? I don't buy that. Ok, channel one got renamed, what else changed throughout his last term?

Maybe not 1%, but it really is not a significant portion. At least not in the circles where I am found: 1. I'm "a settler" in the West Bank. 2. I work in Israeli high-tech. 3. I work with mostly religious Jews.

Note that the polls suffer from "survivor bias", the people answering the polls are those who feel that they need to should their opinion to the world. I don't answer polls, and with elections coming I get several SMS polls per day sent to my phone.

30% feel hatred when they hear Arabic? Who are they polling?!? There is absolutely no way that is true for the general population. You cannot go anywhere in Israel and not hear Arabic.

50% would refuse to work under Arab supervision? Again, this is ridiculous. I don't think money-sucking Jews would refuse to work under Hitler.

> 50% would refuse to work under Arab supervision? Again, this is ridiculous. I don't think money-sucking Jews would refuse to work under Hitler.

Got curious and googled. Couldn't find that last statistic, but it seems 58% (give or take) of residents in the city of Ashkelon were in favor of terminating public works projects (specifically construction of bomb shelters at kindergartens) where Arab workers were employed.

Whether this is an effective proxy for all of Israel or even for the question at hand is unknown to me, and it probably isn't the case considering Israeli AG Yehuda Weinstein warned the city's mayor not to execute the decree, but I'm not terribly focused on the decree itself as much as I'm focused on the population backing it. 58% of a city would appear to be fearful of an employed population because of their ethnic heritage... that's terrifying.


(p.s. it seems mayor Itamar Shimoni ultimately backed off the move, possibly one of the rare cases where an elected public official made a more well-informed decision than what was desired by the official's constituents. https://www.jta.org/2014/11/23/israel/ashkelon-mayor-decides... )


Disclosure: I'm an American-born person of Persian descent, though I'm likely unable (and certainly unwilling) to revisit Persia/Iran under the current regime.

I'm not sure which polls you are referring to, but I'l make you aware of a common tactic. You cannot believe polls in Israel, the questions and methods used are designed to return a specific conclusion.

Often polls will conflate the terms Arab, Muslim, Palestinian, Gazan, and a few other words. You will see that they will ask a question that is interpreted to the poll taker as "would you agree that Gazans who have bombed Ashkelon should be forbidden to work in Ashkelon" and then reported as "Ashkelon residents in favor of terminating construction of bomb shelters at kindergartens where Arab workers are employed".

The polls are _designed_ to present a specific picture, they are not designed to inform about the true nature of the situation. Just ask yourself, why are so many polls being taken, what is their purpose. You know as well as I do that there are no disinterested parties here, everybody has an agenda. At least I state my agenda and position clearly.

You'll also be surprised to know that I know not a single Israeli, not one, who has any qualm with the Iranian people. We're terrified of their nuclear program, but we remember the days of friendship between our countries and a significant portion of Israelis are of Iranian decent. Iran pretty much attacks us via proxy today (Hizboallah), but we see that as a manifest of their current religious regime and not as representative of the Persian people.

> Maybe not 1%, but it really is not a significant portion. At least not in the circles where I am found

Ah, the "No true Scotsman" defense.

> because I'm what you would call a "settler"

Not just "you"; everyone. It is illegal. Even the UN has called for an end to this practice. Most countries don't recognize Israel's occupation of the West Bank. The UNSC has condemned the practice. Israel routinely destroys Palestinian homes and villages for the benefit of you people (the "settlers").


Read more about "settlers": https://www.btselem.org/topic/settler_violence

I agree with your sentiment, but the number is way below 99%. You can't blissfully ignore that a substantial number of people on both sides really hate each other. You can't say your PM is a jerk, but not the people because the people voted for him (or at least his party).

Seriously? Would you say the American people are "jerks" because Trump was voted into power? That's not how any of this works.

That's a very obvious strawman. If you downsize it to the level that GP alluded to, asking if Trump's voters are jerks because they voted him into power, I guess a non-negligible amount of people would agree.

Have you read tootie's comment at-all?

> "You can't say your PM is a jerk, but not the people because the people voted for him (or at least his party)."

No, it's not the people. It's some people that voted Likud in. Much like some Americans voted Trump in. Where's the strawman?

Those "some people" must number more than 1%, right? It is almost impossible to win a non-trivial number of seats in the election if only 1% of the people support you.

30% of Americans even today support Trump. So one would be right to claim that 30% of Americans are jerks.

This may be off topic for HN but what do you think the rest of the world think of Americans?

Absolutely, yes. You can go visit the heartland or the rust belt or whatever and people are friendly and polite and welcoming in person, but they voted for Trump so they're jerks. They support xenophobia, homophobia, torture, corruption. There's a difference between being nice and being good.

What you’re saying already seems a bit suspect. Especially with you commenting on someone else putting spin on something you appear to be putting spin on. Then you start things off with going against what the OP’s article says in its subtitle without any backing:

“'For the price of one Israeli engineer, an [Israeli] company can hire three Palestinians in the West Bank, and they have very high motivation'”

Likewise, the 1% of Palestinians and Israelis have any qualms with one another also has no backing by any data or real life. Since it also isn’t true at all and there’s actually polls, maybe studies, to show that isn’t true. Too much spin.

Yeah, I’m sure Palestinians living in Jordan have to go through military checkpoints everywhere they go.

This is quite interesting. This is not at all how this is portrayed in the media.

Would be cool to hear from a palestinian living there as well

I am palestinian and have family in the West bank and Gaza. And what OPs saying isn't true at all. They are an occupied and oppressed people, treated like dirt and without representation.

Gaza is literally a concentration camp that is extremely hard to get out of. Moreover, the Israelis block imports of food and building supplies, essentially trying to starve the inhabitants to death.

What OP is saying is similar to saying that black people loved slavery and then segregation, because their masters were so fair and kind to them.

I'm the OP, and I agree that the situation in Gaza is beyond reprehensible. I see where Gaza is today, I see how it got there and the Israeli / Egyption hand in it, and I only wonder if it could have worked out differently.

I wonder if it can even ever be resolved.

Regarding Gaza, what’s truly sad is that Israel allows more aid through its border than Egypt does...

Can you please make sure to edit out swipes, especially when posting on divisive topics? Your comment would be fine without the first bit.

That and the fact that while Israel is blamed for everything, nobody ever mentions how Palestinian children are poisoned with anti-israel rhetoric.

Can you blame them? Israel has time and time again committed war crimes, hiding behind accusations of antisemitism whenever anyone calls them out, which cheapens the suffering of people who actually experience antisemitism in order to defend crimes against humanity.

From Human Rights Watch [0]: Israel maintains entrenched discriminatory systems that treat Palestinians unequally. Its over half-century-long occupation of the West Bank and Gaza involves systematic rights abuses, including collective punishment, routine use of excessive lethal force, and prolonged administrative detention without charge or trial for hundreds. It builds and supports illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank, expropriating Palestinian land and imposing burdens on Palestinians but not on settlers, restricting their access to basic services and making it nearly impossible for them to build in much of the West Bank without risking demolition. Israel’s decade-long closure of Gaza, supported by Egypt, severely restricts the movement of people and goods, with devastating humanitarian impact. The Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas in Gaza both sharply restrict dissent, arbitrarily arresting critics and torturing those in their custody.

For more details, see [1] and [2].

[0] https://www.hrw.org/middle-east/n-africa/israel/palestine

[1] https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/06/13/israel-apparent-war-crim...

[2] https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/01/28/submission-human-rights-...

And Israeli children aren’t? Both sides use outrageous claims to fuel the fire, so to speak.

My children aren't. My children play with Arab children, and share their snacks. I'm 100% certain that my children have influenced at least some Arab children to reject the hatred that they are taught.

Note that in the West Bank itself, there are not many opportunities for the children to play together if the parents do not already know each other, because each side is wary of the other. So much of that interaction happens on the other side of the Green Line, with Arab children that do not live in the West Bank.

how on earth can you compare children toting guns and shouting `death to israel` with whatever the israeli kids are taught? (I doubt they are even told about Palestinians, tbh)

Israeli children are in fact taught about the non-Jewish citizens. I would venture that the vast majority are taught that we're different, but neither of us are "better". We have different holidays, different language, and even measure the year differently, but we can play together and learn each other's language.

Not being told about the Palestinians at all would be pretty bad. Pretty sure any country with an extremely controversial history dealing with other people not telling children about those people at all is bad.

> I doubt they are even told about Palestinians, tbh

Assuming this were true, how exactly is it a good thing?

I don't think parent claimed it was a good thing, more like "yeah Israeli children are not taught to shout death chants at Palestinians, in fact I'd venture they are not even taught about Palestinians". Not better, not worse, just a different stroke of bad.

Occupy their land, then accuse them of hate.

This is true for so many conflicts around the world sadly. Hate is everywhere.

Updated(!) interesting fact, Nvidia is an employer of Isreali and Palestinian programmers that are getting paid much less than their American counterparts. Cheap labor without other options because of their less competitive job market, but real opportunities and a more educated and well off population will be more effective at advocating for its rights

ITT: A standard denial of service attack against discussion of any Israeli company.

Who currently occupies the West Bank and Gaza Strip?

But I think it's a good thing. People working together is one of the best ways to get a better understanding of people you would normally never meet. I've met a ton of different people through tech and it's one of the best parts about it. Meritocracy.


Israel doesn't occupy the Gaza Strip, and we could argue about the occupation of the West Bank.

> Israel doesn't occupy the Gaza Strip

Well, except for the airspace and territorial waters, and enforcing it's security zone on the Gaza side of the Oslo Accord demarcation line.

Yeah, they're only bombing the Gaza strip

Please stop!

Who ?

Not occupy but surely controls import/export into Gaza?

Yes thats what he meant occupy is like the bare minimum of what they are doing. They do so much more.

Gaza is held by a terrorist group, defined as such by US and other western countries. It also keeps attacking Israel with missiles. Nevertheless Israel exports medicine, food and concrete on a daily basis to help the civilians in Gaza. Do you think Israel should help them more in any way? What is a sufficient aid for an area which you're in war state with? In addition, for importing/exporting commodities, Gaza could use the their western border with Egypt, which in contrary to the Israeli border, the Egyptian is closed most of the time for the same reason - Egypt doesn't accept the terrorist regime in Gaza. Maybe you think Egypt occupies Gaza as well?

Why would a company that shells out ~7 billion dollars need advertising cookies on its website?

To give you something to bikeshed

I see Google Analytics, and https://assets.adobedtm.com/

From what I read* about adobedtm.com it's not necessarily advertising.


The answer probably lies with their analytics guy's last job and the toolset they used there.

Nvidia is in a pretty shitty situation at the moment. Stocks down almost 50% after the crypto-bubble popped (or deflated I guess is the better word).

That's a very short term perspective, considering they were $20 a share just a couple of years ago and are $150 a share now. Any shareholders other than people that bought in the last 18 months or so are going to be very happy with them.

NVDA is worth 10x what they were 5 years ago.

The usual: to increase their worth to Google Analytics and friends.

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