Thank you for your thoughts on this. As a software engineer I spent (and continue to spend) time thinking about how to serve the customers the best. In term of maintainability, and documentation... The justification for the Apple-Tax(tm) is that the hardware remains viable longer, but if the OS times out because of lack of support, it doesn't matter if the hardware is still viable. How Apple balances this will ultimately determine their success in keeping the fanabois and gurls locked in. Apple can hardly say they don 't have the money to support a backporting team to keep security updates coming. I think while the processor has enough horsepower, and the machine has sufficient RAM and the drive sufficient storage space, the machine should remain supported. Those of us with money to burn will always want the latest candy. Who doesn't want USB3, Thunderbolt, Bluetooth4... But I think quality computing should;'t be just for those with excessive money to burn.
My very expensive Mac Pro 8-core 16GB-ram 3.0GHz machine is orphaned onto Snow Leopard because of it's 32-bit boot ROM. I have been mad about my inability to upgrade the ROM and my inability to benefit from subsequent enhancements. I was consoling myself by considering the machine a general workstation capable of running GNU language tools and such, but I thought web and email would still be there. Although the CPU's are not the latest, 3.0GHz Xeon 8-core is still a muscle machine. Let me guess, Apple doesn't have enough money to pay engineers to back-port security fixes? You know I would have paid several hundred dollars to solve the boot-rom problem so I could move on with post SL operating systems. There is no doubt that I am happier on Mac OS X, but there is no reason for Apple to squeeze us this hard with this short upgrade cycle on the hardware. If I were just buying a thousand dollar notebook from them every three years, I could deal with that, but as a developer I am used to buying developer class machines. My current MacBook Pro was over three thousand dollars. 15" with retina, 2.8GHz Intel Core i7, 16GB-ram(1600 MHz DDR3) 750GB-SSD. I am curious how long this notebook will remain viable. The MacBooks I bought for my father and sister several years ago are already version restricted as well. Our family have been and want to remain pro-Apple but this is becoming more difficult as Apple's hardware design decisions cause continuing pain for the faithful. If I lose the remainder of my AppleFaith(tm) I will be transitioning to non-Apple hardware and *nix for generic workstation activity.
A fairly important comparison can be made between operating systems such as Unix that have text based configuration files, as opposed to Windows that has many binary configuration files that cannot be easily examined or understood. GUI programming might be nice, but until the GUI is up, there won't be any of that. As a career "Systems Programmer", I have chosen to stay close to the bare metal, and unless you are very skillful at expressing high level code such that it generates exactly the machine code you emanated, bare metal programming is still best done in assembly or a C derivative. Programming languages such as Visual Basic that ere supposed to allow non-programmers to write programs are the root of a problem today that people capable of making programs using high level tools often don't have the experience or training to write safe, reliable, efficient code, maintainable and documented. Siri, please write a complete memory manager and interrupt system for my new microprocessor, so I can begin programming in tenth generation languages right away...
That is a bit extreme, don't you think?
Of course lying to Congress is bad, and it makes me feel bad about how poorly these people are behaving. But not only are politicians lying openly, it just makes me crazy when they leave the country to avoid testifying before Congress, then are allowed back into the country like nothing happened.
That is an interesting comment. I remember a while back hearing an explanation about how banks create money. When they make certain kinds of loans (mortgages), they are only required to have a certain amount of the loan amount on hand, the balance is in effect dynamically created because the bank issuing the loan sends a check to the seller for the loan amount. It is a little more complicated than this, but in effect true.
If the customer knows an error has occurs and refuses to resolve the error in good faith, they are being a prick. It is one thing is the vendor is playing bait and switch, and another if a real error occurred. In my mind it is a golden rule situation. With thew narrow profit margins that retailers have these days, a loss like this can be catastrophic. What goes around comes around. When there is an error involved and the customer insists, I think it is a form of theft.
Given that Apple limits the duration of the Applecare support, I divide the price by the number of years it is supportable then ask myself if the machine is worth so much per month. My experience with my previous Mac Pro was a disappointment because a limitation on the boot ROM keeps me from being able to load a 64-bit kernel. My five thousand dollar Mac Pro is stuck back on Snow Leopard for the rest of it's life. I have a certain degree of remorse about this, which would be even more extreme if the price tag was over ten thousand dollars. I don't think I will be able to enjoy one of these, although my inner child yearns for one. I can't afford a Mercedes or a BMW either. My Mac Pro is the workstation of my dreams in a generic fashion though. 16GB of ram, 8-cores of 3.0GHz Xeon is still a kick ass development machine for GNU g++.
Lets see... Microsoft writes a buggy, insecure operating system, then says we should update because the newer buggy, insecure system is better, rinse and repeat. I think Windows 7 wasn't horrible, but then Windows 8 came along and caused me much nausea. I used Windows 8 for four months full time, and after that, I still don't feel in control of the machine. Simply put, I hate "gesture computing". Were there problems so dire with 7 that it needed to be replaced? What an abortion 8 is. But will the day come that Microsoft says no more support for 7 and you MUST move to 8 now? Aren't we tired yet of being wagged around by these people?
Actually the decision to use the 8088 was mostly about the Display Writer, which was a well selling 8086 based word processing system that IBM sold for over $10,000 each. The Display Writer blazed in comparison with the PC, and also IBM picked EasyWriter because it was a word processor, but not any real competition for the DW. The PC was created by IBM's "Entry Level Systems Division". Their goal was to get people started, then sell them something that actually had more power such as the subsequent AT.
Anything that Google tries to standardize with ECMA is going to become more controlled by Microsoft. Aside from this, ECMA is a European standards group (sort of). Their "standards" usually contain patented technology that then must be licensed (usually from Microsoft). I think it might suit Google's purposes better to form a working group and create a standard themselves that they can keep out of Microsoft's hands.
While we are a country of laws, and we agree on a need for them to apply to everyone, I am appalled that there would be any serious consideration to actually place a statue of satan at the courthouse. I am a Christian, and of course I like that the Ten Commandments are at the courthouse. The commandments represent an early form of law. According to the Bible, satan was a controversial character who encouraged Eve to break the one existing rule about behavior in the garden. The commandments are about there being a set of conventions for the good of society. Satan has generally stood for anarchy and people doing whatever they please. Perhaps in the interest of religious freedom, the commandments will have to be removed. That's a shame in my opinion.
Just how many possible sequences of code are there to initialize a few registers. Actually the manufacturer of the part has sample code to initialize the chip that happens to be copyrighted itself. They probably won't sue you if you are buying their chips, but what happens when some smart guy designs a chip which is cheaper and plug in compatible. Lets take that a step further. There was a time people were building new devices and new drivers had to be written. But once Microsoft bundled drivers for all the commonly occurring hardware, clever designers learned to build cheaper hardware that was register compliant so the built in drivers would work. Anyway, just how many variations of code output bytes to a hart when the TBRE flag is set?
I just returned a high end Toshiba notebook to Costco for several reasons. The first was that either the fan or hard drive started making evil noises. I suppose I could have gotten warrantee service, but a failure after four months makes me cautious about Toshiba hardware. The other reason is that after giving Windows 8/8.1 an honest chance for four months, I can say unequivocally that I hate the operating system, hate the GUI, and feel almost nauseous trying to use it. Stuff that was intuitive and falling down easy with XP is counterintuitive and sometimes darn near impossible with 8. I have to believe that many other long time computer users feel as I do. What could be worse than being told by your employer that you have to use this crap?