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Comment Hats off, Amazon (Score 1) 33 33

It's always been a bit of a PITA to even consume Amazon content; I've got a fairly poor network connection and they're nowhere near as good at throttling as Youtube, let alone Netflix. When you compound that with their long-standing and only relatively recently-relaxed attitude towards permitting Android devices to consume Amazon Instant Video, my desire to have Amazon Prime has been extremely limited... until now.

Assuming this is true, this might be what finally lures me into Prime membership.

Comment Re:Low cost chip, high cost support (Score 1) 75 75

Now if a Sparc product was to target the mobile phone market?

Yeah, there's already been embedded SPARC processors, I talked to some guys at a job fair a long (long) while back who had built a digital camera around one. The problem is, they're just not cheap enough.

Comment Re:Can this be installed on a dual-boot machine (Score 1) 311 311

So the question is: can I replace 7 with 10? Without damaging the Linux install? If it screws up grub how do I get it back?

one option is to install grub to another device, like a flash drive. then you only have to get your BIOS to boot that device; if it doesn't happen automatically, F12 is usually the key to select boot devices during POST, but YMMV.

Comment Re:Thank you, early updaters (Score 1) 311 311

I think two cores is enough for most purposes

Really? I'm surprised by that.

Over time I've found the extra cores goes a long way to a better experience.

Obviously I don't disagree with that statement, I bought more than two cores.

It means I can be using two browsers, ripping a CD to MP3, possibly streaming through my Apple TV, and still have a responsive system.

Yeah, but that's the thing, these days you can do that with just two cores if you have a SSD. The web browser I/O is the only part of all those tasks that really punches your computer in the nuts, especially if you have a halfway-decent GPU — basically anything from nvidia or even AMD which will run in the currently shipping driver will decode all common media formats for you.

I'm pretty sure my video card is a cheapo generic Nvidia with 1GB of RAM (which I'm old enough to be in awe of being cheap and generic),

Yes, I got only the 1GB video card myself; if you don't have 4k it doesn't matter much. Few games need more than 1GB to reach their full potential at 1080p or less (I'm playing at 1920x1200, but close enough.) And I too am just old enough to be in awe of how cheap this stuff is. My first computer was a C= 16, then I had an Apple ][+, then an Amiga 500, then when I killed that I got an IBM PC-1 from someone, a 386DX25, and then I got a Sun 4/260 which was kind of hilarious. Had 24MB RAM, though. So yeah, when I can throw these systems together for virtually nothing and they are faster than my first ten computers put together and then some and some of those computers were just as powerful as multiuser systems I was happy to have accounts on elsewhere at the time... it's a good time to be a nerd.

Unless you're the kind of person who launches a program, uses it, closes it, and then launches the next program (do people actually do that?) I've found that tons of CPU and RAM means the machine will be more usable for a lot longer than if you went with less. And it usually means your machine can be bloat proof for a lot longer without becoming horribly slow.

Yeah, I agree with all that, I just think that these days a fairly decent dual-core (especially something from intel with four threads, but even just an AMD processor) is more processor than most people will actually use most of the time, and a really good dual-core will cover all the needs of all but the most hardcore users. I eight cores because I too like to do lots of things at once, but frankly I rarely actually pin more than four of 'em.

Comment I doubt it is for *chips* themselves (Score 3, Interesting) 90 90

TFA is a bit light on details, but (having heard of GaN before), it is good at handling large voltages/currents, and they are probably talking about more efficient power supplies (saving 20%, apparently), not replacing Si in logic chips. Or maybe integrating power conversion onto processor die itself, but the latter is still made of good old CMOS. Currently, from what I've heard, a good chunk of pins on your processor are used to supply power -- if you think of it, 30W processor with 3V bias needs to get 10A of current.

Paul B.

Comment What a disingenuous douchebag (Score 1) 68 68

He also pointed out that the Wi-Fi range of the hack would limit its real-world use. âoeItâ(TM)s highly unlikely when a hunter is on a ranch in Texas, or on the plains of the Serengeti in Africa, that thereâ(TM)s a Wi-Fi internet connection,â he says. âoeThe probability of someone hiding nearby in the bush in Tanzania are very low.â

High-gain directional antenna what what? They've got hills in Texas, too, little-known fact.

Comment Re:Thank you, early updaters (Score 1) 311 311

Obviously you are concerned about bloat ... which is why you seem to have the same machine as I do. You future proof yourself against bloat by over-building it up front. Worked well for my last machine, which lasted me 5+ years.

I think two cores is enough for most purposes, but since the Xbox 360 you really want at least four cores for PC gaming. My last machine originally had three cores (Phenom II X3 720) and later sprouted three more (Phenom II X6 1045T) and is now my dedicated Linux desktop system. It, too, has 8GB. Now that game consoles have eight cores, it is in theory a good idea to have eight cores. In practice, the new i5 is faster at running eight threads than my FX-8350, even though it only has four cores. I would have had to have purchased a more expensive motherboard to go with my more expensive processor, though. I do have to admit that the intel benchmarks tend to produce much better minimum frame rates than the AMD boards, though. It might be worth the money.

I have no intention of upgrading this machine to Windows 10 now, possibly not ever. But sure as hell not with that in-place update to what I consider an OS barely out of beta.

I would use the in-place upgrade, but only out of curiosity. I'd like to see if Microsoft has it any better figured out than before. But then I would go ahead and nuke it and do a fresh install anyway.

Comment Re:Thank you, early updaters (Score 1) 311 311

Or you know.....install it on its own little partition....just a thought.

Thinking is what you aren't doing. Installing Windows 10 on your Windows 7 machine, assuming you are getting Windows 10 for free because you have a Windows 7 license, invalidates your Windows 7 license. Or as the saying goes, "You can't go home again."

Granted, I can dick around with activation hacks and keep running 7 in perpetuity, at least in theory. But I paid for Windows specifically so I wouldn't have to mess with any of that crap, and so that I could get Windows 10 for the same low, low price.

Comment Re:Thank you, early updaters (Score 2) 311 311

So what specs would qualify as "blisteringly fast." Discounting the graphics card, you can't get the specs of a machine a whole lot higher than what you have now.

Oh, yes you can. You can buy enterprise-class processors and have assloads of cores. And my cores came from AMD, you could get cores from intel. Of course, you would have to spend vastly more money, which is why I didn't do that. I bought as much machine as I could get for just a few hundred bucks. The MB and case are refurbs, the video card is just a 750 Ti (Might upgrade pretty soon though, nvidia is getting ready to drop another budget board) and the processor is the middle-of-the-road version.

Yes, you can add more RAM but going beyond 16 GB is only going to be helpful for a small selection of tasks.

Mostly you could have a faster processor, in the real world even the new i5 is faster than this 8350. And of course, you could have vastly more GPU. Mine was just around a hundred, you can spend as much as I spent on my whole system on graphics. Or, as I considered briefly, you could have a couple of processors, each with more cores. But I decided that 8 was enough, even if I virtualize a couple of dual-core machines I still have enough left to get by and if I want to feed more VMs than that, I need to spend a lot more on storage.

Our business in life is not to succeed but to continue to fail in high spirits. -- Robert Louis Stevenson