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PoliticsI am Congressman Tim Ryan, Candidate for House Democratic Leader

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!

Q:

Sounds delightful.

A:

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?


Q:

What are some good white elephant gifts for $20 or less?

A:

Is there a NUC that supports Linux hibernate yet? Or does that still brick the device?


Q:

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.

A:

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!


Q:

Socks. You can get ones with funny prints which may seem ridiculous, but will come in handy when you keep putting laundry day off.

A:

I'm looking into getting an answer for you. Hold on.


Q:

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?

A:

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.


Q:

Question 2 : Notifications are great, and we also CamelX3 a lot as well. Camel misses certain things (other retailers, coupons, additional discounts taken at checkout, lightning deals) so if you want the absolute best price, it's best to get a little more coverage.

A:

Thanks, I'm on my 5th NUC, the other 4 have been RMA'd and a refund issued. I've talked to other Linux users of the NUC and they seem to agree they're a bit finicky.

I want to love them, the form factor is fantastic, as is the performance when all is going well.

Thanks for your time.


Q:

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.

A:

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.


Q:

Question 1: We recently wrote a piece about Amazon Basics which might interest you: http://thewirecutter.com/blog/should-you-consider-amazonbasics/

A:

Still working on an answer. This week is tough to find the right technical folks (everyone seems to be on vacation besides me - not bitter). I may not be able to respond right away, but I will get back to you. Thanks for your patience.


Q:

What specific policies do you propose to address the greivances of the working class? Do you support a $15 minimum wage? How would the Democratic Party support labor unions under your leadership? Provide specific policies please, with as much detail you can afford. If possible cite bills you support

A:

How was work this week?


Q:

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!

A:

I've been dealing with this for a year or so, a bit more time isn't going to hurt me ;)


Q:

I am from Northeast Ohio, which was built on the back of the hardworking men and women, many of whom are in labor unions. They are the backbone of our country -- our teachers, police officers, steelworkers, and autoworkers. I believe the Democratic party must do everything we can to keep our unions strong and secure - protecting their pensions, healthcare, and wages. That includes pushing for a $15 minimum wage.

A:

I worked an extra shift this week (I usually only work three 12 hour shifts a week) for overtime pay so I'm pretty exhausted. I work again tonight (I do night shift, 7pm-7am) and this will be my 5th night in a row. I try to do all my days in a row if I can get back on a normal sleep schedule during my days off.

It was pretty busy on and off the last couple of days. Saw a ton of sick kids and my first flu + patient of the season. We also had a lot of high acuity (sicker) patients.


Q:

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!

A:

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!)


Q:

There has been enormous focus on what the campaign did wrong, but what are a few things you think it did right and would like to see continued/improved moving forward?

A:

Are there any situations that you see on a regular basis that just make you want to say "oh no. Not another one"?


Q:

I could have sworn I saw a post from you folks that said you were looking at couches. I was pretty surprised, since there are so many different kinds, but I would certainly take your word/help on it. Are you going to be doing a review of couches anytime soon or is it up and I'm just not seeing it?

A:

Thanks for doing this AmA. I love the idea of the stick. I'm really turned off by the lack of openness.

It seems you've gone out of your way to make it extremely hard for people to install an open OS on the stick.

And then the version you do sell with Linux pre-installed you have crippled spec-wise compared to the windows version.

Why? And: why?

Thanks.


Q:

Great point. Something I am proud of in the campaign is that we brought a lot of new voters into the process who never participated in elections before. I am also proud of the positive, optimistic view of America that Secretary Clinton advocated for. Even in defeat, Hillary was (and is) an inspiration to millions of girls across this country and for that, especially as a father, I am grateful.

A:

Oh yeah, most definitely. One of the most annoying things I see is that soooo many patients treat the ED like a clinic, coming in for very minor issues that could easily be handled at an urgent care or could wait until a patient sees their primary care provider. It congests the whole department, drastically increases wait times, and makes it much harder for patients with true emergencies to be seen. What bothers me even more is when these patients fail to understand that they are NOT an emergency, and thus will have it WAIT. People refuse to understand when a sick patient is taken from the waiting room to a room before they are. I try to explain to these individuals that the ED does not work on a first-come-first-serve basis, and that the sickest patients are seen FIRST. I can't count the number of times people have yelled at me, cussed me out, or became aggressive due to the wait time - I work in a VERY busy ER. It's the most frustrating thing ever when people who aren't even that sick have such a sense of entitlement and don't give a fuck if someone else is dying and needs medical attention BEFORE them.


Q:

Our sofa guide is still in the works; hopefully will be up in early 2017. When we explore new categories, it can take us a bit longer to bring the guide to fruition since we want to make sure we're being as meticulous and thorough with our research and testing as we are with the other product categories we cover.

A:

Hi AlvinQ - while it may not seem this way, we are not trying to make it hard to install different OSes on to the stick. In our first generation, we did offer the version with Linux (Ubuntu specifically) that you refer to. Our thinking on the decreased specs was to hit the lowest possible price point. However, we got the very feedback that you are providing us and decided that in the future we wouldn't choose the OS for you but rather sell sticks either with Windows or simply with no OS installed at all. And we would keep specs of the no-OS sku that same as the Windows sku. Currently there are no-OS versions of the stick of Atom, Core m3 and Core m5 processors. Hopefully one of these will meet your needs.


Q:

Hi Tim Thanks for seizing the time and stepping up to help the party provide new leadership. Your ideas on America 2.0 and focusing on advanced manufacturing are right on to me. Can you also share your thoughts about how we can lead in job creation in fields like engineering, IT etc. where we have seen opportunities for college grads in those fields diminish due to the same offshoring that has impacted manufacturing?

A:

Have you ever seen anything which was too gross for you to handle?


Q:

Thanks for the work you guys do. I have a dozen of your recommendations and the dishwasher is getting installed on Friday. Any parenting stuff on the horizon? Holy hell the baby market is filled with overpriced garbage.

A:

You really botched linux support for a long time (while having a version that was pre-installed with ubuntu). Many people had to stay on 3.16 when 4.3 was a thing. Why did you not mainline proper audio, s3 (and lower) states and sdio?


Q:

To revive the economy and create jobs, we have to support investment in innovation and new technologies. In my district, Youngstown is home to America Makes, a public-private partnership that works to accelerate additive manufacturing and 3D printing technologies, a new frontier in American manufacturing. America Makes serves as the model for future innovation hubs that will help grow the number of good-paying, high-tech jobs available to American workers in our district and across the country. By advocating for additional federal support for the industry through the budget and appropriations process, I’ve championed the cause of protecting the manufacturing sector and investing in its future. That’s the kind of champion I’ll be as Minority Leader, always focused on leveling the playing field for American workers and manufacturers with their global competitors.

A:

I don't really have a choice to not do anything "gross". I really hate working with sputum and respiratory secretions but I have to suck it up and do it anyways. I usually just put on a mask/face shield if it really grosses me out. I once had to put a nasogastric tube (feeding tube that goes from the nose to the stomach) in a patient who had a small bowel obstruction. He had basically been puking up fecal matter and blood because of the blockage. The smell was probably the most disgusting thing I've ever smelled. He had also vomited all over himself and the ground. But I still had to do it anyways :(


Q:

We're definitely thinking about covering parenting stuff in the near future! Also, depending on what age range you're looking for, we just put together a pretty great guide to the best learning and STEM toys we love: http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/learning-toys-and-stem-toys-we-love/

A:

nicman24 - I understand your frustration as we do hear this from our Linux supporters on a somewhat regular basis. The simple (although I realize completely unsatisfactory answer to you) is that Intel has to make priority decisions on what OSes to support for each of our processors. And there are simply some combinations of processors, OS and features that do not end up getting supported at the end of that analysis. I am no expert on this but this is my understanding of why we are in this situation.


Q:

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?

A:

How difficult is it to get a job in nursing?


Q:

Do you guys have any recommendations for wireless sport/gym earbuds?

A:

I've played with the compute stick and I'm wondering about heat. How are you resolving the heat challenges while trying to improve performance on something this small?


Q:

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

A:

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.


Q:

We do! We have a guide dedicated specifically to wireless exercise headphones. You can check it out here: http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-wireless-exercise-headphones/

A:

That is the ultimate question. Obviously you can solve the heat problem by simply degrading performance of the processor, but that is a rather unsatisfactory approach. So the first step is to choose the right processor. We are utilizing ones that we specifically engineered for ultra thin laptops and tablets, so they are more efficient (performance per watt of power) than a typical processor. Then it comes down to system design. the placement of every component in the system matters to optimize where the heat is being generated and to maximize cooling opportunities. And finally we work with some of the best suppliers in the world for thermal cooling devices (fans, heat sinks, etc) to ensure that our devices are the best balance of size, performance and thermals.


Q:

Hi Tim, Thank you for all of your work here in Ohio. What can Ohio residents do to help?

A:

Would having personal experience help? I had a daughter who had a brain tumor that ended up making it necessary for her to have a trach, gtube, and ventilator. She had episodes of respiratory failure when she got upset and needed to be bagged by whoever was with her which was almost always me, on top of the regular trach care and tube feeding and whatnot. I was basically her nurse for 3 years without actually going to school. Now the next logical thing seems to be nursing school since I already have so much experience. I know that experience will help me in school because she was such a complex patient but I've wondered if it'll matter when I need to find a job once I'm done.


Q:

I bought the Skylake i5 NUC. It's lovely and snappy on Xubuntu 16.04. I can't say "well done" enough.

Do you have plans to support any of the BSD's? As far as I know True-OS and maybe DragonflyBSD are the only ones that support Skylake graphics.

And on that topic, do you have any NUCs planned for Coffee Lake and Cannon Lake?

I'm rather curious if and how you guys use Linux too.

A:

Thank you for your support. If you’d like, you can always call your Democratic Representative and let them know why you think a change in House Democratic Leadership would benefit the Party. Also use our hashtag #Dems4Change to let your friends know what you think!


Q:

I'm so sorry to hear about your daughter :( I don't think it would hurt to mention your experience with your daughter, especially once you get an interview. I wouldn't go so far as to put it on your resume, since it's personal experience, but definitely mentioning it during the interview - and giving it as a reason for wanting to get into nursing - would help give you a step up above other candidates with no experience. I would DEFINITELY recommend trying to get a job as a CNA (certified nursing assistant) while you're in school though because having direct patient contact in an acute care setting makes you look much better from the perspective of the hiring manager. In my state, after you finish your first semester of nursing school, you can apply for your CNA license. Good luck!

A:

Glad that you are liking your Skylake NUC! The graphics support decisions are made at the processor level and not within our organization. I believe that you are right today about the BSDs that are supporting Skylake graphics and I am not aware of any additional ones being worked on.

As for future NUCs, while I am not able to publicly talk about unannounced products, we have no intention to stop producing NUCs for future generations of processors, so stay tuned!


Q:

Hey Tim, Youngstown born and raised here, what is it you believe you can do better than Nancy Pelosi in what i think is the Dems biggest challenge, voter turnout?

PS - Great job at the Betras Roast

A:

If you know the show, how would you compare your view of doctors in the ER vs. the way things were portrayed on "Nurse Jackie"?


Q:

With newer technology like usb 3.0 do you think you could covert this pocket computer into a performance booster (by that I mean a a flash drive that could help processors compute data)?

A:

We need to get voters engaged again in the Democratic process. We need to let voters know that we understand their frustration and disillusionment by going to their communities and listening to what they have to say. We need to let voters know that we hear them and we need to speak to their anxieties regarding the economic and social adversity they are facing.


Q:

Out of all the "medical" shows I've seen, I think Nurse Jackie comes the closest to reality. I think that's due in part to the writers being nurses and actually working in the medical field. There are definitely still parts of the show that are unrealistic which is frustrating but it's far better than most other shows. I also have heard of some nurses who have gotten addicted to narcotics and fired after they were caught, but I heard it all second hand. It's a little bit difficult for me to compare the hospital Jackie works at to mine because All Saints is a trauma center, whereas the hospital I work for is not.

A:

This is a clever idea! We have actually looked at this in general and right now there doesn't seem to be a realistic path to make it work. The primary challenge comes down to getting two processors (the one in the compute stick and the one in the other computer) to find a way to split the workload efficiently. It shouldn't be impossible, but it would be very hard and not something that we are working on today.


Q:

I'm intrigued by the idea of new leadership for House Democrats after 14 years. However, it seems that many in the caucus are reluctant to vote for anyone other than Rep. Pelosi. With so little time to campaign, how do you envision garnering enough support to win?

A:

Most of the time you don't get closure. If there was no apparent cause for the death we don't find out.


Q:

Are you guys getting enough sleep?

A:

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.


Q:

Like the other person said, we often don't get to follow up on many of our patients because we really don't have them for more than 12 hours at the max before they're either discharged or transferred to the floor. This patient was a medical examiner case (autopsy) and there would be no way of me finding out at this point what they discovered was the cause of death. I really wish I could find out though.

A:

Always! The brain doesn't work well without the right amount of sleep!


Q:

Thanks for doing this AmA. How do you plan on convincing the state of Ohio that Democrats have a better path forward than Republicans? This goes nationally as well if you're made Minority Leader, how will you convince a group of people who voted for a sexist reality star that they can trust our party to represent their interests?

Again, thank you from an out-of-state Ohioan.

A:

when my husband was a resident he was doing an ED rotation. He saw someone for pain (idr the details.) Closed the curtain and stood there charting for a few minutes. He hears the guy immediately get on his phone "Hey man, I got 30 percocet! you wanna buy?" He just opened the curtain like...you know these aren't soundproof, right?


Q:

I feel like you missed a marketing opportunity here. "...but our Intel Compute sticks don't need sleep and can run 24/7!"

A:

Thanks for having me! Look, I think we need to resist the urge to paint all Trump voters with a broad stroke. Did some who voted that way do so because of some form of prejudice? You bet. And we need to do everything we can to banish those biased viewpoints. I choose to believe that the majority of Trump voters turned out because of economic factors. If Democrats can effectively reclaim the mantle of being the party of the working class, I think we’ll be successful. America is fundamentally good, and even though Mr. Trump represents a lot of our worst instincts, most Americans, not even most voters, endorsed his fear-mongering vision of the United States.


Q:

Wow, that sucks that you gave him the benefit of the doubt and he tried to play you like that :( It's patients like that who make us skeptical of everybody.

Or when I see that a pt is allergic to nsaids, tylenol, morphine, toradol, etc. I already know where we are headed.... Literally had a patient the other day ask for pain meds and rattle off the aforementioned allergy list and then you, the only medicine that works for me is IV dilaudid (claimed PO didn't work) and that he also needed IV benadryl and IV phenergan because it made him itchy and nauseous. Then tried to tell me I needed to push it straight into his port and then flush it with 10cc afterwards. Doc ordered it in a 50ml bag of NS and PO benadryl. Needless to say he was pissed, haha.

A:

That is a great point. Don't tell my boss, that I miss that opportunity!


Q:

Oesophagus is the British version of the esophagus if you were a confused 'Murican like myself.

A:

How do the specs of the 'Compute Stick' compare to modern day computers? How would the Compute Stick handle graphically intense games?


Q:

I don't work in the OR so I don't get to see any surgeries (except for minor bedside procedures). When I was in nursing school I saw one open heart surgery but they had already cracked the chest and the pt was on bypass so the heart wasn't beating and I left before they started it back up again.

A:

First off, the Compute Stick is a modern day computer! We offer a range of performance options starting with entry level compute sticks based on the Atom processor all the way up to one with a Core m5 processor in it - the same processor that is used in many ultra thin 2 in 1 in the market today. With that said, there are some limitations going so small. The amount of local storage is less than a typical desktop computer today and you don't have the ability to upgrade the device since it is not user accessible. And for graphically intensive games, the Compute Stick is not the right choice (if you want that in a small form factor, check out the Intel NUC line of mini PCs.


Q:

What's your opinion on people who come into the ER because they've had too much to drink? Do you feel they're wasting valuable resources?

A:

Ive had an Intel NUC since 2013. Its primarily used as a PLEX MEDIA SERVER to watch my movie collection around the house and remotely in different locations and as such its always on.

Do you have any tips or tricks that could make my NUC more power efficient as an ‘always-on’ machine?


Q:

Like other poster said, many people who come into the ED don't really even need to be there so I'm used to it. It can sometimes be difficult to determine if someone who's drunk is actually intoxicated or if there's something more serious going on. I had a patient once who was assumed to be drunk and triaged as such, but ended up having no alcohol in his system and his head CT showed a massive hemorrhagic stroke. He came in with garbled speech and confusion. EMS was called to the scene by bystanders who saw him wandering around outside. There are multiple similar instances when we assume that someone is either intoxicated or on drugs when their mental status is altered by something else so we can't just make that assumption and have to treat them accordingly. Even if they are just drunk, they can aspirate on their own vomit, fall and injure themselves, or end up intubated because of their excessive alcohol level.

A:

I'm assuming that you are already optimizing all of the standard windows power settings to get what you are looking for. Beyond that tale a look at Intel Ready Mode. This technology was developed with just this type of experience in mind.


Q:

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?

A:

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.


Q:

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!

A:

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?


Q:

Why is it that trips to the emergency room always end with me getting a fist full on OxyContin?

A:

Would you all ever plan on releasing a compute stick development kit for diy projects? The compute stick size-to-power ratio is much greater than some of the small single-boards out there


Q:

I dunno, are you asking for oxy?

A:

That is a very interesting idea! We have not thought about that for compute stick, but I think it could be a real option at some point.

Intel does offer the Galileo board which might provide some similar capabilities.


Q:

My mom's a nurse, do you know her?

A:

I compare all single-piece, low-powered computers like this to the Raspberry Pi, since the Pi defines that niche.

What about the Intel Compute Stick causes it to cost 3x what the Raspberry Pi 3 does?

Am I wrong in assuming that your latest Intel Atom processors are relatively comparable to a Pi's ARM processor?

I tried and failed to comfortably run a web browser on my Raspberry Pi 3. Can device handle Firefox?


Q:

Yes. I know all the nurses in the entire world.

A:

I can understand that comparison, many people view it that way. There are a few reasons why the Intel Compute Stick costs more than a Raspberry Pi does. The first and foremost is that Raspberry Pi is targeted at makers and others than want to develop on it. The Compute Stick is a full, ready to use computer that is targeted at mainstream consumers. And things like including Windows, a full enclosure, on board storage and the like add to the costs as well. As for running a web browser on the compute stick, that is no problem. The current Intel Compute Stick is also capable of 4k output for streaming video and the like to television sets (one of the main consumer usages)


Q:

How often do people come in with things stuck in their asses? What's the weirdest thing you've ever witnessed or heard of being pulled out of an ass?

A:

Do you get paid bonuses if the product you developed is successful? Does Intel plan to expand from chips to selling computers? What's the coolest thing you can tell us that isn't confidential?


Q:

I already answered this question above

A:

Good morning! Intel is generous in their support of their employees and that does include bonuses. However, the bonuses are mostly for the overall success of the company, not for any one individual program or product. We want to make sure that everyone at Intel is working towards the common good of the company and not just on their own products.

To your second question, Intel is always looking for opportunities to innovate and that can take many forms, including cool products like the Intel NUC and now the Intel Compute Stick.


Q:

Are there any future ideas to invest in more affordable compute units, be it stick or NUC?

A:

We are always looking for where the next opportunity should be for future investments. That can include looking for higher performing (and more expensive) NUCs and compute sticks as well as more entry level units. We are just about to launch our latest entry level NUCs (codenamed Arches Canyon) so keep an eye out for these starting in December.


Q:

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?.

Thanks!.

A:

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.


Q:

What has been the biggest challenge in creating this product?

A:

The primary challenge with developing a product this small is optimizing all of the tradeoffs that need to be made. Which features are absolutely required, which can you live without? How much performance is enough without increasing the amount of cooling that is needed (which would increase size, cost and/or noise)? All of these questions (and many, many more) were addressed in the initial development of the product.


Q:

has there been any trade offs yet that you're not 100% sure about?

A:

I know that we made some poor decisions on our first generation product, sacrificing WiFi performance for a simpler and smaller antenna design. We already changed that with our second gen device. The other 'mistake' on the first gen was only putting one USB on the device to save space. We have already addressed that as well after a flood of complaints from our customers. Right now, I feel pretty good about the tradeoffs in the 2nd gen of devices as the customer and industry feedback has been quite positive.


Q:

I remember reading an article about the then emerging technology called Bluetooth being a solution looking for a problem.

Which are the most common problems you see the stick being used to solve?

A:

Primarily compute stick is designed to bring an entry level PC into spaces where a standard PC is either too large, too much of an eye sore or consumes too much power. For commercial applications, there are lots of digital sign usages where the low power and tiny size is optimal for their application. For consumers, being able to bring basic compute to a TV without having a computer visible is often desirable.


Q:

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?

A:

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!


Q:

How small realistically do you think mini-PC's and/or "stick" PC's can get?

A:

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.


Q:

Thank you, yes I was referring to "full PC's" as it were. I personally think that once Stick PC's get powerful enough many people won't see a need for a traditional desktop, I guess it may just become a question (as always) of performance.

A:

Yes, that and if there is any additional cost that is needed to support such a small form factor. Today the components we have to choose are more expensive than standard parts. But if the industry as a whole moves towards these devices, that would of course drive down those costs to parity with the traditional parts today.


Q:

Thank you for your innovation to make usable, powerful, mobile computing a reality!

What's the one thing you wish would be technologically feasible to implement but as of yet isn't in the computer sticks or NUCs?

A:

For compute sticks, the number one thing that I would love to be able to do is power the device directly over the HDMI port, rather than needing an external power supply. We are getting closer to making this real (some HDMI ports now support superMHL which might make this possible in the future) and that would be huge benefit to the compute stick experience.


Q:

This is the first I've ever heard about this! I'll be checking it out after I read this AMA

My question:

Do you think this technology will be invested in by NASA to alleviate payload restrictions for satellites, exploration devices, etc in the near future?

Are these devices able to meet rigorous standards to provide long-term capabilities to the dedicated exploration of space through telescopes and/or spacecraft?

A:

The compute sticks that we are selling today are not designed to meet the requirements of space (they are not radiation hardened for instance), but the foundation of what we have developed could be utilized to develop such devices.


Q:

Do you guys think that in future everyone will only have a monitor on their desk, and a stick that plugs into that instead of modern rigs and consoles? Are you working towards that future, or are you more interested in desktop PC area? And the last question, how much do you guy get paid and what degrees and what languages you need to speak to get a job?

A:

That is an interesting idea! We are always looking for new ways to innovate in the compute space and that is an idea that we have talked about as a possible future state. Will be interesting to see if/when we get there.

As for jobs, Intel obviously has a very wide range of employees with vastly different skill sets and experiences, and the pay range is as diverse. Likewise, language requirements vary by the role and location of that job. If you are interested in working at Intel, please check out our Jobs at Intel site


Q:

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.

A:

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.


Q:

I was quite impressed with the iGPU performance on the Skull Cannon NUC, and after looking at indiegogo/Kickstarter projects like the Smach Z and the GPD WIN, it made me wonder: Is there a possibility of Intel joining the party of handheld computers?

A:

Interesting. Intel tends to try to develop new products in spaces where we feel that other companies are not currently servicing. In places where we see others engages, Intel typically tries to see how they can support those companies with the right technologies to make their devices optimal. So I wouldn't expect to see Intel develop a competitive product to these, but hopefully they will continue to be based on Intel.


Q:

Is your product purchasable on Latinoamerica? and if so, are you shipping a crippled or nerfed version?

A:

Yes, the standard version of the Intel compute stick is available in Latin America, although there are some countries where tariffs might make it hard for the product to be sold there.


Q:

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.

A:

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!


Q:

I like the concept of those compute sticks, but what's always preventing me from buying one is their tiny amount of RAM. Why aren't there versions with more RAM available?

A:

Today our Core based compute sticks have 4GB of RAM in them (earlier versions had less). The reason for the size of the ram is that most of our customers have told us that 4GB is enough for what they want to do and they aren't willing to pay for additional RAM. Obviously that is not true for everyone, such as yourself, but that is reasoning behind our decision.


Q:

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?

A:

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.


Q:

When can we expect a flux capacitor to come from Intel research?

I wanted to say that I've been using computers for 25 years and it's absolutely incredible the advances that Intel has made in technology and miniaturization. Kudos to your team and to Intel for always driving innovation.

A:

Thank you! There are days when I'm pretty amazed by what our engineers continue to do as well.


Q:

Hi, Intel team!

I don't own a compute stick but it is awesome! Here are my questions:

  1. Did you ever expect the Compute stick to get this much love?

  2. Have you tried installing an old operating system on it?

  3. What is your favorite old computer and operating system?

  4. Do you use any old computers today?

A:
  1. When we developed the concept, we of course were expecting success, but you never know with something new. It is great to see the excitement in the industry that this has created.
  2. I haven't personally, but our current compute sticks officially support Windows 10 and Windows 8.1. You can probably get Windows 7 to work, but older would definitely start having issues.
  3. I still remember fondly the first computer that was ever brought into our house, an Apple 2C+. My brother got it as a gift and he and I had a great time with it.
  4. No - now my idea of an old computer is anything that is more than about 18 months old!

Q:

Hey guys! A few questions.

  • First, are you thinking about selling any accessories with it? I think it'd be cool to wear one around my neck or attach it to my keychain.

  • Second, which model would you recommend for a CS student who wants to just practice codng on Linux?

Thanks for doing this AMA!

A:

Intel does not have any plans to sell accessories with the compute stick. But i will note that the compute stick has a small security notch in the back end that could work for a lanyard if you are so inclined.

I would probably stick (pun intended!) with our entry device - STK1A32SC. This will come without any OS installed, so you can install the Linux distribution that you want. Good luck!


Q:

Where are these manufactured?

A:

They are manufactured by one of our partners in China.


Q:

I've got an issue with SDIO on STK1A32SC device, running Linux. Kernel writes out stuff like this:

i2c_designware 808622C1:06: punit semaphore timed out, resetting i2c_designware 808622C1:06: PUNIT SEM: 2 i2c_designware 808622C1:06: couldn't acquire bus ownership i2c_designware: probe of 808622C1:06 failed with error -110 intel_sst_acpi 808622A8:00: No matching machine driver found 

I believe this means that SDIO on the device is entirely ineffective. What is the impact of missing SDIO, and is there any knowledge of a fix?

Edit: Never mind. Googling the issue finally tells me that this is likely only related to the external SD card support. I've not actually tried it. There's also a limited support now on 4.7 kernel.

A:

Glad you solved this yourself! I'm just a marketing guy!


Q:

Amazing tech you have here! Can these handle 4k Youtube video streaming?

A:

Yes! All of our current compute sticks can support 4k video (our first generation product did not)


Q:

Hello,

My question :

1.what unique hardware components are present inside the stick apart from the normal ones that we have?

2.Can we use any OS for the stick? If no then what is recommended?

Thank you.

A:

1 - for the most part, the components in the compute stick serve the same function as those in more typical computers. However, every component is selected specifically to meet certain requirements around size, thermal performance and power usage. So they are different in that we have to choose ones optimized for this form factor. 2 - We sell the compute stick both with Windows 10 already installed and with no OS installed. If you purchase it without an OS, the OS that are supported are Windows 8.1, Windows 10 and Linux. Many distributions of Linux should work although there can be a feature or two that won't function correctly depending on the driver support.


Q:

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?

A:

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.


Q:

Have you seen or heard of anyone running Kodi on one of your devices? Can you comment on how you think your device compares to the Android powered sticks? Are you competing for similar markets?

A:

Yes, people have and do run Kodi on their compute sticks. It is a great way to get a better UI on your TV. As for Android powered sticks (I imagine you are thinking Amazon Firestick or Google Chromecast), there are some similarities (streaming content from Netflix for instance) but the Android powered devices are single purpose devices capable of doing one thing, streaming content. The compute stick is a full multi-purpose computer that is capable of not just doing a range of things, but also of multitasking and doing them at the same time. For instance you could be streaming the Thursday night NFL game while also tracking your fantasy football league and smack talking with your friends over IM, all on your TV at the same time. This sort of capability is only possible with full computer.


Q:

Thanks for the reply. If this is the case, do you see the functions of the Xbox One as a bigger competitor then?

A:

In general, Xbox One could long term be a bigger competitor. Today however, consumers think of Xbox One as a gaming device first and in that sense I don't think most people would be comparing the two even though many of functions are similar.


Q:

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)?

A:

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.


Q:

Hi Guys. I bought one of the first gen compute sticks, and really enjoyed it (I use it to play old console games with emulators and an XBox 360 controller), but I had a few issues I'd like to see improved. How have you guys addressed:

1 - The built in WiFi was weaksauce. Very slow xfer speed compared to other devices in my house, and it gets worse if you use a bluetooth device as they apparently share receivers. On top of this, wireless N is not supported, which means no Steam remote play (which is half the reason I wanted a PC in the bedroom).

2 - Setup was a pain in the butt as there was no way (that I could tell) to attach a bluetooth device without first using a physical KB, which can be annoying considering the device is plugged into the back of a TV and only has one USB port (I had to go out and buy a USB hub to set everything up).

3 - Performance left something to be desired. I imagine this has been improved with the switch from the Atom to the Core M; how big of an increase in effective speed can we expect to see with the Core M?

All that being said, I really like the device and will probably buy one of the newer ones, depending on their performance. Keep up the good work!

A:

Glad that you have been getting good use out of the first gen compute stick. All of your feedback is spot on and have actually been addressed in our second generation of products. 1 - WiFi in the second gen uses Intel fastest WiFi available today and even more importantly we went from a 1 x 1 antenna scheme to a 2 x 2. This means that there are now two antennas (rather than bluetooth and wifi sharing a single antenna) as well as two frequency that it can broadcast. The wifi and bluetooth are both markedly improved from first gen. 2 - yep, this was true. there was no way to do this previously. However, the new sticks allow you to pair a bluetooth device if they don't detect a keyboard or mouse in the usb ports during the initial setup process. 3 - Performance is significantly higher if you go to the Core M processors. Part because of the processor and in part because they have double the RAM (4GB instead of 2GB). If you got an Core m3 stick today, I don't think you would even compare it to the first gen atom stick that you currently have.