Nov 22nd 2016 by RyanForLeader • 45 Questions • 243 Points
Hello again! We’re the team behind Intel’s Compute Stick, the tiny computer the size of a pack of gum you connect directly to an HDMI TV or display. You may remember us from our last AMA about our Skull Canyon NUC, another small form factor computer.
They may not look it, but Compute Sticks are full-fledged PCs capable of running Windows 10 and Linux. That means you have the flexibility to do whatever you want — play games, stream video, get work done, run a server — and you aren’t limited to a walled garden of apps, as is the case with other entertainment devices with this form factor. So we’d love to answer your questions relating to Compute Sticks, from their development to technical details to how to use them. We’ll also answer questions about breakfast, horse-sized ducks, and whatever you’ve got. Bruce Patterson (/u/BrucePatterson-Intel), marketing manager, will be answering your questions today. And here’s proof.
Ask us anything.
ps. If you’d like to pick up a Compute Stick, keep an eye out for Black Friday deals from online retailers such as NewEgg and Amazon.
pps. We’re giving away 3 Compute Sticks at random, to random questioners!
Thanks all for a great AMA! Appreciate all the great questions and comments. I will do another check on this AMA later today and see if there are a few things that need to be answered. And the three lucky winners of Intel Compute Sticks are being communicated with right now. Thanks and happy computing!
My boyfriend used to work in the ER as a scribe before he started medical school. He swore that on nights there was a full moon, weird things would happen. People would, for some reason, be more aggressive/emotional than usual, leading to strange or violent injuries. There was such a correlation, people (doctors, nurses, staff alike) would mark the date of the full moon on the calendar just so they weren't blindsided by an especially busy night. He always tried to get that day off, but of course, it wasn't always up to him.
My aunt, who's also an ER nurse in a different city, apparently swears the same thing. My mom's best friend, another ER nurse in another city, has also been remembered to say the same thing.
Have you noticed any correlation?
Is there a NUC that supports Linux hibernate yet? Or does that still brick the device?
Question 1: Natural gas combustion releases half the CO2 compared to oil, reduces our dependency on foreign oil, and--because it’s “homegrown”--provides good jobs for a lot of people. If we could rely solely on renewables today, I would do everything in my power to make it happen. However, the technology and efficiency is simply not there. I see natural gas as a bridge to those renewables, which also can wean down our dependence on oil and coal, which are much dirtier fossil fuels. I have a record of supporting the Clean Power Plan, and strong oversight and regulations on hydraulic fracturing. Question 2. 2015 is when I wrote the oped, but I’ve had a perfect voting record with NARAL for the last 6+ years.
Yup! It's actually a really common superstition. I think it's probably all in our heads, but I swear we have the craziest patients, especially psych patients on full moons!
Socks. You can get ones with funny prints which may seem ridiculous, but will come in handy when you keep putting laundry day off.
I'm looking into getting an answer for you. Hold on.
An important role for the party leader is to raise money. Nancy Pelosi is an unparalleled fundraiser for Democrats. How would you plan to match or exceed her fundraising success?
Oh man, I'm an ED nurse and I would never go back to the floor. On the floor, if you get a fucking asshole patient, they are yours for 12 hours, and they will probably be there when you come back tomorrow too. Multiple doctors round and put in new orders all day, multiple meals, accuchecks, bed changes, baths, med pass for all of your patients scheduled at the same time and they all have 15 meds each. Oh, and did you need something? Have fun paging the doctor 20 times while your patient yells at you for not having the order yet. In the ED, you have that patient for maybe 4 hours. They can't eat or drink until testing is done and then you can throw them the one sandwich you have in stock if they want it. Don't like it, they can order once they get upstairs or get their own food when they leave. No bathing, limited toileting. You get your patient, you assess, draw blood, monitor, and provide meds as needed, then send them on their way. It's great.
Solid question. No one can deny that Nancy is a phenomenal fundraiser, but if money was the only problem, Hillary Clinton would be the President and Democrats would be in the majority. It's our message, not our fundraising, that's hurting us in these elections. We need someone who can walk into both a Union Hall, a church, and a fundraiser in Napa Valley, and I can do that. I will use all my energy to travel this country to help raise money for Democrats.
100% agree. I don't think I could EVER go back to the floor. The only other area I could see myself in would be trauma ICU, but even that I'm not sure if I'd really enjoy as much as ED.
Four things: 1. Thank you for your reliable reviews. 2. Any rec'd laptop bags (not backpacks) less expensive than your briefcase recs? 3. Bluetooth headset rec for dictation s/w (spec, Dragon for Mac)? I didn't see it mentioned in recent reviews.. 4. Sugg: How about a new section just for baby-related stuff (we're expecting our first..). Thank you!
I've been dealing with this for a year or so, a bit more time isn't going to hurt me ;)
Answer to 4: Baby-related gear is something we're definitely considering expanding our coverage on and we make sure to log all these requests and suggestions from readers, so I'll make sure to make a note. Also, congratulations!
Did some research and talked with a couple of guys in the lab who remember this issue from when it first came up. They believe that the issue has been addressed with the BIOS update V.358 which came out on November 5 (there is now a 360 available as of yesterday). Here's the link to the release notes for this 360 release and you can see the relevant fix under teh 358 section. If you get updated to this BIOS and are still seeing the problem please respond back so I can inform the team. And of course you can always reach out to Intel Customer Support or the Intel Community if you desire (I'm guessing you are already well versed with both of these!)
are you willing to admit that bernie was forced out by severe internal corruption in the party and that Hillary had no buisiness being the nominee ever or for that matter being anywhere near any position of power or top secret material?
How difficult is it to get a job in nursing?
You can check out the oped I wrote a couple years ago on my stance on abortion here: http://www.ohio.com/editorial/tim-ryan-why-i-changed-my-thinking-on-abortion-1.561970
As you probably know, there's a significant nursing shortage which is only projected to worsen in the near future. It's quite easy to find a job if you have nursing experience already. It's tough for newly graduated RNs out of school to find a job because it's REALLY expensive for hospitals to train brand new nurses and they pose a liability risk to the hospital since they are so inexperienced. Most hospitals have new graduate RN programs with several months of extensive orientation. It makes it even more difficult if you have an associate's degree rather than a bachelor's because there is a huge push for bachelor's to be the entry level degree for RNs even though RNs with associate's and bachelor's practice under the exact same scope of care and can do the exact same job.
Good question. As I’ve said many times, this is a lot like the family conversations we all have to have from time to time. It is tough, it probably should have been had sooner, but here we are. I have nothing but admiration for Nancy Pelosi, but the question boils down to are we winning...and we’re not. That is what I’m telling my colleagues. I think there’s a real appetite for change in the Democratic Caucus and all I can do is plead my case and hope they agree.
For all of us medical students going through our ED rotation, what should we take away from the rotation and what things can we do to make your job easier?
Has the team ever considered making an Ethernet model with POE?
Many displays lack powered HDMI or USB outputs to power the stick making for more power bricks to collect. I think a compute stick on the end of a POE cable would be great for a number of applications.
Ask the docs as many questions as you can. Try to be proactive and connect the dots. One of my favorite things about working in the ER is when you have a patient and don't know what's going on so you have to investigate. It's almost like solving a puzzle and the more information you get, the closer you get to a diagnosis.
Probably the best thing you can do to make our lives easier is to just be nice and courteous, not just to the nurses, but all the staff. It really goes a long way when MDs, med students, PAs, NPs, etc don't give off an egotistical "I'm better than you" vibe. I think respect goes a long way. Good luck and I hope you enjoy your rotation!
We have looked into this! With the Compute Stick our primary objective was to make the device as small as possible so we decided to leave Ethernet off initially. However, we do see the desire for it in exactly this situation that you raise. As for POE, that gets quite a bit harder in part due to the size that POE adds, but even more challenging for the extra heat that is generated by providing power to the run a screen. Right now it is not realistic to do that in a device as small as a compute stick. There are some mini PCs in the market that have this capability, but nothing this small.
Love the idea though - any other great ideas for compute stick usages?
Hello!. Thank you for all your efforts guys!.
Now, my question is, is there any limit of how small a NUC or a Stick can be?. Do you plan to make them any smaller in the future?.
We are always looking to push the boundaries of what's possible and what seems impossible one day, becomes reality the next. So while we do not currently have plans to develop a product smaller than a compute stick, I certainly would expect that there will be products sometime that are, and probably not too far into the future.
I'm looking forward to the world we're entering regarding external GPUs. With TB3 allowing for 40 gigabit throughput, you can actually run an external GPU on a NUC or laptop with little-to-no bottleneck.
With that being said, the few external GPU enclosures using TB3 that have been announced so far are extremely expensive. Is it possible we might see Intel produce their own?
External GPUs do create some exciting opportunities. And i agree that today they are quite expensive. I don't expect that you will see Intel do their own, but we are working with the industry to encourage more companies to look at doing them which we think will help create some that are more entry level.
BTW - ever see the external GPU that someone created themselves? Pretty cool!
How small realistically do you think mini-PC's and/or "stick" PC's can get?
We are always looking opportunities to make things smaller, faster, cheaper, etc. If you are looking for a traditional PC (ie. use Windows) devices like the stick are generally as small as they can be today. I expect that we will continue to see this size shrink, but it is not clear how much benefit there is to keeping going much smaller. However, there are already tons of computers that are much smaller - smart watches and the like are all computers, but they don't have the full PC experience that I think you are referring to.
I am very pleased with my NUCi3RYH - it has served me well for the unexpected - from setting up virtual networks with GNS3, to using Handbrake to encode multiple 720p videos at the same time, so thank you! I've traveled with the machine home and back again, and all in such a small form factor! Unbelievable. I picked up the N3700 variant as a Kodi/bedside TV box.
I'm hoping to get a Compute Stick in the near future, but did you anticipate how popular the form factor would be? It's pretty unconventional, and unexpected throughout most of computer design.
So glad to you hear that you have been pleased with your Rock Canyon NUC! Sounds like you are getting great use out of it.
As for the popularity of the compute stick form factor moving forward, that is a great question. It is very hard to predict that although we do have quite a few customers that are very taken with the form factor and hope that it will become a mainstay in the industry. Only time will tell.
This question is more about how a cool project comes to be from a giant company like intel.
This is a pretty niche project, obviously not something just anyone wants to buy. I know some companies allow team to pitch a product and if they like the idea they will take a chance on it. Is that how something like this becomes possible?
Also, I'm extremely glad when I see support for Linux.
Great question. At Intel a lot of our company's focus is on the main things that we do - produce the best processors in the world. But we have technology labs that spend all their time working on creating new possibilities (the idea that led to the compute stick came from one of these labs) as well as small product development teams (where I work) that take the best of these ideas and figure out how to make real products out them. And we are simply measured on if we can do our job profitably - if we can we get to keep doing it!
Hi thanks for the ama. What are the major drawbacks your see compared to desktops? I'm looking to replace my desktop, do you think this would be viable?
Do you think there could eventually be gaming pc sticks?
Would you consider launching pc sticks in 'tiers' a la iPhone S, SE, C?
Thanks for joining the AMA! The major drawbacks compared to a tradition desktop - in general there are two: less performance and no upgrade path since you can't open up a compute stick. So if you don't need to upgrade your device (without upgrading the whole stick) and if you only need a basic computer, the compute stick could be a good option for you.
For gaming, you can do light 2D gaming (think Minecraft or Steam console) today on the entry level stick and some slightly more robust games on our high end sticks. But it is not a replacement for a gaming rig!
The sticks do actually have different tiers - we sell versions based on Atom, Core m3 and Core m5 processors. Check our website for details on all the different versions.
They are manufactured by one of our partners in China.
Amazing tech you have here! Can these handle 4k Youtube video streaming?
Yes! All of our current compute sticks can support 4k video (our first generation product did not)
Do you have any plans to release other devices similar to these? Such as a raspberry pi type device for those who need a bit more horsepower?
The Compute Stick is currently planned to remain as a finished computer device, not really targeted for developers and makers. Intel does offer the Galileo board which is more along the lines of a higher performing Raspberry Pi.
Have you considered building sort of a "docking station" where thermals wouldn't be a problem, more ports would be available and the CPU could run as fast as it gets (as they probably can, but passive cooling makes it no bueno)?
So a place to dock the compute stick that would provide more outputs and perhaps some additional cooling for the stick? Interesting idea, although once it gets much bigger than a stick, I would think that people might just prefer to purchase a mini PC (like the Intel NUC) which would provide great performance than could be achieved with an external dock (the internal cooling will always be more successful that the cooling from the dock).
Just to clarify, the Intel compute stick is not passive cooling. It does have a very small fan inside that is used to maintain temperatures and allow for greater performance than passive cooling would.