nice and clear explanation, good job Eben ! Thank you noenken for referencing this.
Side channel cpu cache attacks are not particularly new, was it a defcon or a ccc talk from couple of years back where someone used a similar technique to sniff on android keyboard, or to make a pair of applications that otherwise do not have permissions to communicate, actually communicate.
btw, only university course standing between my and my masters degree is (or at least was) “instruction level parallelism”, where this type of stuff is actually studied. I ended up picked a job instead of a degree and ended up never finishing masters, but I still have the book on my shelf that I never opened. I wonder whether it mentions anything about security or implications on caching.