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Thread: Windows 7

  1. #1
    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    Windows 7

    Opinion: A shining moment

    Microsoft and Apple will release operating systems this year - unprecedented? Matthew JC. Powell investigates.


    An interesting thing is going to happen this year, and (correct me if I'm wrong) I think it might even be unprecedented. Both of the major commercial desktop operating systems are due to receive major updates, and neither of them is going to require a new computer to run.

    Ever since the dawn of the personal computer (even before IBM joined the PC game) it has been the rule that the hardware will get faster and cheaper and smaller and more powerful - and the software to run it will make sure it never actually feels any faster. There will always be new features, new graphical doodads, new bells, whistles and kazoos that make the computers look better and do more than they ever could before - but they never actually feel like they're getting better at it.

    Twenty years ago, in 1988, I purchased an Atari 1040ST. It had an 8MHz processor and 1MB of RAM. I later added a 20MB hard drive. In 2008 I purchased an Apple MacBook Pro, with a 2.8GHz processor, 4GB of RAM and 320GB of hard drive space. I'll let you do the maths to work out how much bigger, faster and stronger my new computer is compared to that trusty old Atari.

    But know this: both machines take roughly the same amount of time to start up. Hopping into a word processor is actually (and I timed this over the summer) a tad quicker on the Atari. Does anybody even make a word processor that could run in 1MB of RAM anymore?

    ...

    This year it stops. This year, Microsoft will release Windows 7 which, almost as an apology for Vista, will not require more powerful hardware to run.

    It includes few new features, but emphasises instead refinements to the existing code.

    Things users have not liked about Vista are out, and things they wished for are in.Likewise, Apple has made no secret of the fact that this year's iteration of Mac OS X, Snow Leopard, will offer few features that are not already in Leopard.

    Instead, Apple is focusing its efforts on making it run better on the hardware you've already got.

    If you're in the business of selling computers (as, I imagine, some of you probably are) this will likely not be a banner year.

    However, for those of us who buy them, this is a moment to be treasured: when new software we install will actually make our computers better.

  2. #2
    CC Grandmaster Spiny Norman's Avatar
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    About time they started reducing the software bloat. Fair dinkum, more than 10 years ago I was writing multi-user P.O.S. software that managed multiple preipheral devices (intelligent cash drawers, customer displays, receipt printers) and its still running in a few stores today on PC's with no more than 2MB ram ... of course, we did need a powerful server (it had all of 4MB of RAM).

    Needless to say, we weren't running Windows (or MacOS for that matter).
    “As you perhaps know, I haven't always been a Christian. I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of port would do that. If you want a religion to make you feel really comfortable, I certainly don't recommend Christianity.” -- C.S.Lewis

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    CC Grandmaster Capablanca-Fan's Avatar
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    Geoworks

    I remember Geoworks in the early 1990s, a desktop publisher, word-processor and GUI that was streamlined enough to run on the ancient XTs and 286s with only 512K of RAM that couldn't handle the bloatware Windows, and was less prone to crashing. It zoomed on 386s and 486s, and had features that Windows didn't have for years afterwards. Shame it had some (easily remediable) deficiencies, and lacked the marketing clout of the Gates empire.
    Last edited by Capablanca-Fan; 06-02-2009 at 06:07 PM.
    “The history of the 20th century is full of examples of countries that set out to redistribute wealth and ended up redistributing poverty.”
    “There’s no point blaming the tragedies of socialism on the flaws or corruption of particular leaders. Any system which allows some people to exercise unbridled power over others is an open invitation to abuse, whether that system is called slavery or socialism or something else.”—Thomas Sowell

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    I'm getting the impression that computing, both hardware and software has come to the point that there is no need for improvement in performance. Hardware is being designed better to run cooler and have better instruction pathways per cycle.

    I've been a geek since the mid 80's and often upgraded every few months, that is until the last 18 months where I have not upgraded my hardware. Mind you, I'll consider a new upgrade at the end of this year but I don't really see a "need" to upgrade for the time being.

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    CC Grandmaster Garvinator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shelldrake
    I'm getting the impression that computing, both hardware and software has come to the point that there is no need for improvement in performance. Hardware is being designed better to run cooler and have better instruction pathways per cycle.
    I think for the average user, it is more about how to keep the crap out of your computer, rather than how to add more into it.

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    CC Grandmaster Desmond's Avatar
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    Microsoft plans to open shops next to Apple Stores

    Microsoft intends to open stores in the United States close to those already established by Apple later this year, according to its chief operating officer, as it looks to win back the initiative in the battle for Main Street PC and gadget buyers.

    "We're going to have some retail stores opened up right next door to Apple stores this fall [springtime in Australia]," said Microsoft's Kevin Turner at a webcast conference in New Orleans on Wednesday. "Stay tuned."

    The world's largest software company announced in February that it would open its own chain of branded stores as it looks to counter Apple's successful foray into retailing, hiring a former Wal-Mart Stores executive to run them.

    Few details have emerged since then.

    A Microsoft spokeswoman confirmed on Wednesday only that "there will be scenarios where we have stores in proximity to Apple," and that some stores would open "in the fall timeframe."
    So what's your excuse? To run like the devil's chasing you.

    See you in another life, brotha.

  7. #7
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    Ok, Ok, but somebody had to get their hand's dirty.


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    CC Grandmaster arosar's Avatar
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    There are a number of variations to that vid. One of the funniest I saw was about the demise of Kodakchrome.

    AR

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    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    SWAMBO was watching Independence Day (I've never seen it and I've just confirmed I missed nothing special, except for some appalling acting and an improbable plot).

    Speaking of improbable plot ... the world defeats the enemy by uploading a virus to the mothership. Weird how the mothership was operating on Windows (or mac or open source - not that a 1996 viewer would be aware of these ideas - Microsoft wasn't a dirty word back then). The screen even showed an 'uploading now' shot. Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ...

    I won't even mention the mandatory American schmaltz nor the symphony playing in the background for most of the flick
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

  10. #10
    CC Grandmaster Spiny Norman's Avatar
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    I think you misunderstood that bit just a little Gunner. At least, I understood it as:

    -- mad scientist decides to write virus to infect alien network
    -- he writes the code on his laptop and presumably compiles it (converts it into binary)
    -- he links his laptop to the alien computer system by some unknown means
    -- uploads the compiled virus code into the alien system

    Hence the display was on his screen, not on an alien screen. However why would one expect an alien computer system to have even a remotely comprehensible environment that a human-written virus could take advantage of? Especially when the mad scientist has only had about 12 hours to conceive, write and test his code.

    Stupid really. But the target audience for that movie wasn't intelligent lifeforms anyway.

    I must confess I watched most of it. But only for the explosions ...
    “As you perhaps know, I haven't always been a Christian. I didn't go to religion to make me happy. I always knew a bottle of port would do that. If you want a religion to make you feel really comfortable, I certainly don't recommend Christianity.” -- C.S.Lewis

  11. #11
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Snail King
    I think you misunderstood that bit just a little Gunner. At least, I understood it as:
    OK thanks. You're absolutely sure there wasn't a Windows logo on the screen?
    Quote Originally Posted by The Snail King
    I must confess I watched most of it. But only for the explosions ...
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

  12. #12
    CC Grandmaster Ian Murray's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunner Duggan
    SWAMBO was watching Independence Day (I've never seen it and I've just confirmed I missed nothing special, except for some appalling acting and an improbable plot).
    I wouldn't really call it improbable. Earth was lucky perhaps that the POTUS at the time happened to be an ex-fighter jock who was able to personally fly the suicide mission into the alien mothership

  13. #13
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Murray
    I wouldn't really call it improbable. Earth was lucky perhaps that the POTUS at the time happened to be an ex-fighter jock who was able to personally fly the suicide mission into the alien mothership
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

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    You people forget that John Wayne had a ten-shooter. Can't you suspend belief for a few hours?

    And it wasn't POTUS. It was a drunken, ex-fighter pilot turned crop duster who dun the deed. "Tell my kids I love 'em." Oh yeah.
    Last edited by Jim_Flood; 08-11-2009 at 08:28 PM.

  15. #15
    CC Grandmaster Basil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim_Flood
    You people forget that John Wayne had a ten-shooter. Can't you suspend belief for a few hours?
    Fair point. Some 'licence' should be afforded, but there are degrees. Independence Day's degree of licence would have required Wayne to be bullet-proof and have a 5,000 shooter.
    Last edited by Basil; 09-11-2009 at 10:16 AM.
    There is no cure for leftism. Its infestation of the host mostly diminishes with age except in the most rabid of specimens.

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