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Saturday Tech Bits

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16. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 29, 2013, 17:13 Beamer
 
No, it's more akin to saying Steam engines will disappear because diesel is replacing it - it happened. Sure, they were inferior when they were introduced, but that didn't last and they soon became the better technology.

Or, being like my father and saying you can't imagine an electric car ever replacing his gas car because it only has a range of 200 miles per charge.
 
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15. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 29, 2013, 17:05 jdreyer
 
Good discussion Beam,

So, 20 years out, you're right, I have no idea what might happen, but 10 years out, I just don't see anything coming close. Yes, companies have diversified into mobile, as processors are powerful enough in mobile devices to do a lot of basic things like play movies, surf the web, etc. And, yes, desktop OEMs are going away, replaced by mobile devices, since what used to require a basic tower to do can now be done by mobile.

But those weren't powerful machines anyway. The discreet parts market is vibrant as ever. And nothing else can approach what a powerful PC can do. This isn't a Diskman/Kodak situation (also, we still have discreet cameras). It's more like saying Corvettes are going away because we have Priuses now. Yes, you can go to the store in both, but you really only take your 'Vette to the track or open it up on the autobahn.
 
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"Microsoft is the absent minded parent of PC gaming" - Verno
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14. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 29, 2013, 08:12 Beamer
 
jdreyer wrote on Jan 29, 2013, 01:05:
@ Beamer

1. Are you saying major manufacturers are going to stop supporting PC over the next decade or so? Even though PCs are dropping a bit in market share, there's no way it will go away. Even if it becomes niche, there will still be parts, though they will be more expensive. The costs of producing unique circuit boards has come way down, and will continue to do so.

2. What PC R & D is going away? We're still seeing massive tech improvements in CPU, GPU, drives, I/O, everything. Many of those innovations apply pan industry, regardless of device, like SSDs and USB3, but of course with a PC's massive bandwidth and compute power, it takes the most advantage of these.

3. Longevity: My old machine was fine (I still have the machine-bought a new case), and even played games fine, I just wanted something new. I thought I'd get a noticeable perf improvement. It was actually a mistake, and I could have easily waited another couple of years, as the improvement was much less than I was expecting.

4. Flexibility: what machine would ever replace it? Short term, there's nothing, no console, tablet, notebook, server, etc. can replace what my tower can do. You might have a point a decade or two out: cloud computing via any device might be more powerful, but I don't foresee them overcoming the latency issues.

5. How is accessibility fleeting? The macine will always be accessible.

At this point, machines are orders of magnitude more powerful than they need to be to do most tasks. If I take care of this one (and I as careful to get a case with tons of cooling with all intakes covered with washable dust covers) I see it lasting nearly a decade. I may need a new GPU in a few years, and maybe some more storage, but I can add those things in easily. What computing device other than a calculator do you expect to still have in a decade's time? Your tablet, phone, and laptop will surely be dead/replaced by then.

1) PCs dropping "a bit?" No, laptops are dropping a bit. PCs have cratered. Again, open up your local Best Buy ad and tell me how many desktops are in it (I imagine you mean them, not laptop, since 90% of your points aren't attributed to laptops.) Or go review any CES information.
Or look at Nvidia. 4 years ago, at CES, all they talked about was 3D Vision and how awesome their new PC cards were. 3 years ago they officially introduced Fermi. 2013? They spent about 25% of their time discussing cloud computing, 25% of the time discussing Shield, and 50% of the time discussing Tegra4. Where was the PC technology in this? What is the name of the new Nvidia architecture?
Where do you think Nvidia is putting their money?
Intel announced they're out of the motherboard business. Where is Intel putting their money?

2) Again, look at where the major players are putting money. AMD is the only one not moving more towards mobile and tablet, and they're nearly out of business. Intel and Nvidia have begun drastically shifting. They're putting signficantly more money into low power, low heat solutions (e.g., mobile.) As more money goes there, and less to PC, eventually the two platforms meet

3) Why did it play games fine? Because the technology has stagnated

4) Like I said, nothing could replace it in flexibility. But you're so ridiculously short-sighted if you're saying "in a decade or two." I believe Sony said the same thing about Discmen and Kodak said the same thing about cameras. Phones replaced both. Guess what's next

5) Accessibility is fleeting if, you know, no one makes that machine anymore. If Nvidia and AMD stop producing desktop-based GPUs, or severely cut back development, then you lose that accessibility, no?
 
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http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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13. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 29, 2013, 01:05 jdreyer
 
@ Beamer

1. Are you saying major manufacturers are going to stop supporting PC over the next decade or so? Even though PCs are dropping a bit in market share, there's no way it will go away. Even if it becomes niche, there will still be parts, though they will be more expensive. The costs of producing unique circuit boards has come way down, and will continue to do so.

2. What PC R & D is going away? We're still seeing massive tech improvements in CPU, GPU, drives, I/O, everything. Many of those innovations apply pan industry, regardless of device, like SSDs and USB3, but of course with a PC's massive bandwidth and compute power, it takes the most advantage of these.

3. Longevity: My old machine was fine (I still have the machine-bought a new case), and even played games fine, I just wanted something new. I thought I'd get a noticeable perf improvement. It was actually a mistake, and I could have easily waited another couple of years, as the improvement was much less than I was expecting.

4. Flexibility: what machine would ever replace it? Short term, there's nothing, no console, tablet, notebook, server, etc. can replace what my tower can do. You might have a point a decade or two out: cloud computing via any device might be more powerful, but I don't foresee them overcoming the latency issues.

5. How is accessibility fleeting? The macine will always be accessible.

At this point, machines are orders of magnitude more powerful than they need to be to do most tasks. If I take care of this one (and I as careful to get a case with tons of cooling with all intakes covered with washable dust covers) I see it lasting nearly a decade. I may need a new GPU in a few years, and maybe some more storage, but I can add those things in easily. What computing device other than a calculator do you expect to still have in a decade's time? Your tablet, phone, and laptop will surely be dead/replaced by then.
 
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12. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 28, 2013, 15:55 Beamer
 
jdreyer wrote on Jan 28, 2013, 15:35:
Redmask wrote on Jan 27, 2013, 16:08:
jdreyer wrote on Jan 27, 2013, 16:02:
@ Redmask,

You'll pull my tower from my cold dead fingers.

I like my tower too but there's little advantage gained by having one anymore. We're outstripping resource requirements from even videogames. Storage is one of the few things where it makes sense anymore.

I used to have that attitude but now I realized that I don't really care if its a big tower under my desk or a little device on the table so long as they accomplish the same functions. If anything this will mean an even bigger PC market, we can't stay rooted with towers while the rest of the world makes smaller devices. The manufacturers won't go along with that for long.

I'm not wedded to my tower just because that's what I've always had. There are benefits to it that no other system has:
- Price/performance beats any device.
- Power envelope beats any other consumer device
- Longevity - I've gone through a couple of laptops and several laptop hard drives in the 5 years I had my last tower (Core 2 Duo, 8800 Ultra). I rebuilt it over the summer (core i5, GTX 670) and plan on having this one at least as long.
- Maximum flexibility: it does whatever I need, it has almost no limitations excepting portability
- Accessibility. I can troubleshoot/fix it myself, which is not the case with other devices.

Yeah, but these benefits are fleeting:
1) Price/performance depends on manufacturers continuing to support the platform. That support, those R&D dollars, and those capital investments are drying up
2) Power also depends on R&D innovations going to this platform over others, which is no longer true.
3) Can you really claim longevity if you rebuilt? Sure, it's the same case, but if the guts change...?
4) Flexibility will never be matched, but again, that flexibility is fleeting
5) That accessibility will never be matched, but again, it's fleeting

I'm not convinced we're going to PC-as-a-service, with us all having dumb terminals we just plug in. I mean, probably eventually in some medium-long range, but I don't know how soon that'll be. There should be zero need for accessibility at that point, though - you never have to fix anything. You plug in and things either totally work or, if there's some crisis, totally don't. Nothing between.

We'll see small, portable devices that aren't a PC form factor but do everything a PC can, including hook up to a mouse, keyboard and multiple monitors, first.
 
-------------
Music for the discerning:
http://www.deathwishinc.com
http://www.hydrahead.com
http://www.painkillerrecords.com
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11. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 28, 2013, 15:35 jdreyer
 
Redmask wrote on Jan 27, 2013, 16:08:
jdreyer wrote on Jan 27, 2013, 16:02:
@ Redmask,

You'll pull my tower from my cold dead fingers.

I like my tower too but there's little advantage gained by having one anymore. We're outstripping resource requirements from even videogames. Storage is one of the few things where it makes sense anymore.

I used to have that attitude but now I realized that I don't really care if its a big tower under my desk or a little device on the table so long as they accomplish the same functions. If anything this will mean an even bigger PC market, we can't stay rooted with towers while the rest of the world makes smaller devices. The manufacturers won't go along with that for long.

I'm not wedded to my tower just because that's what I've always had. There are benefits to it that no other system has:
- Price/performance beats any device.
- Power envelope beats any other consumer device
- Longevity - I've gone through a couple of laptops and several laptop hard drives in the 5 years I had my last tower (Core 2 Duo, 8800 Ultra). I rebuilt it over the summer (core i5, GTX 670) and plan on having this one at least as long.
- Maximum flexibility: it does whatever I need, it has almost no limitations excepting portability
- Accessibility. I can troubleshoot/fix it myself, which is not the case with other devices.
 
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"Microsoft is the absent minded parent of PC gaming" - Verno
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10. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 28, 2013, 08:28 gray
 
Fantaz wrote on Jan 27, 2013, 16:37:
It's a all about cloud computing my friend... all we need are thin clients, and NVidia's Grid graphics server crunching farms will take care of the rest.

And Quantum Entanglement NICs.
 
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9. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 27, 2013, 16:37 Fantaz
 
It's a all about cloud computing my friend... all we need are thin clients, and NVidia's Grid graphics server crunching farms will take care of the rest.  
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8. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 27, 2013, 16:08 Redmask
 
jdreyer wrote on Jan 27, 2013, 16:02:
@ Redmask,

You'll pull my tower from my cold dead fingers.

I like my tower too but there's little advantage gained by having one anymore. We're outstripping resource requirements from even videogames. Storage is one of the few things where it makes sense anymore.

I used to have that attitude but now I realized that I don't really care if its a big tower under my desk or a little device on the table so long as they accomplish the same functions. If anything this will mean an even bigger PC market, we can't stay rooted with towers while the rest of the world makes smaller devices. The manufacturers won't go along with that for long.
 
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7. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 27, 2013, 16:02 jdreyer
 
@ Redmask,

You'll pull my tower from my cold dead fingers.
 
Avatar 22024
 
"Microsoft is the absent minded parent of PC gaming" - Verno
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6. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 27, 2013, 15:20 Redmask
 
The direction the market is moving will be external video cards once they solve the latency issues. The days of having a monolithic tower in your living room are probably numbered but the concept of a "desktop" PC is still alive and well. People will just having smaller boxes with external videocards and storage. I'm actually looking forward to it, there are few advantages to having a tower anymore unless you're building a home server.  
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5. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 27, 2013, 01:55 NegaDeath
 
Last fall I upgraded from an OC'd Q9400 system to a stock speed Ivy Bridge 3570k system. Didn't see much of a boost in GPU heavy games or OS performance, CPU heavy games got a big boost though. Guild Wars 2 literally doubled in FPS for example. Strategy games like Galciv2 and Civ5 were much quicker in calculating AI turns on big maps. Sins of a Solar Empire ran better with multiple AI's in play. But with the direction the market is going I probably won't need a new CPU for years, its all about lowering TDP and improving integrated graphics for the mobile market now. Bah! Flimshaw!  
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4. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 26, 2013, 23:11 killer_roach
 
PHJF wrote on Jan 26, 2013, 21:13:
When my 8800 Ultra died a couple of years ago I put in a gtx 460 and saw a very nice improvement.

Exact same move I made, except I'm *still* rockin my q6600. Been sitting on 4GB of PC6400 for as many years as the processor. Patiently waiting for some "next next gen" games to force an upgrade...

Yeah, I had a Q6600 that I was just fine on, but my brother wanted a newer desktop, I saw the Sandy Bridge CPUs, and told him I'd sell him my old hardware so I could get a 2600K.

Now two years in on that, and I doubt I'll be upgrading the CPU in my desktop anytime soon (might think about a GPU upgrade in a year or two, but even that's not much of a priority at the moment).
 
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3. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 26, 2013, 21:13 PHJF
 
When my 8800 Ultra died a couple of years ago I put in a gtx 460 and saw a very nice improvement.

Exact same move I made, except I'm *still* rockin my q6600. Been sitting on 4GB of PC6400 for as many years as the processor. Patiently waiting for some "next next gen" games to force an upgrade...
 
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Steam + PSN: PHJF
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2. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 26, 2013, 19:32 jdreyer
 
Good article on the impact of a new gpu on on older system. Until this past summer I had an e6600 proc. When my 8800 Ultra died a couple of years ago I put in a gtx 460 and saw a very nice improvement.  
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1. Re: Saturday Tech Bits Jan 26, 2013, 17:08 JohnBirshire
 
Those "best places to work" are usually nonsense anyways. Everytime one is published you see countless employees from those companies on forums advising their jobs are awful. I saw a local magazine stating Chase was the best company in area to work for...magazine sponsored by Chase. Go figure.  
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