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Slashback

Slashback: Rebuttal, Satellite, Patents 333

Slashback items below bring you updates tonight on connecting to the net by satellite, the feasability of porting OS X to Intel-type hardware, speeding tickets via GPS, and European patents.

RTFPrint An Anonymous Coward writes: "As I'm sure is true of many others among the Slashdot faithful, I was ecstatic to see the culmination of this story earlier in the week. It seemed that Comcast's leadership had experienced a sudden and uncharacteristic attack of common sense. As a former @Home subscriber being moved to Comcast's network, I'd balked at the new terms of service Comcast required (particularly the part about giving Comcast permission to track my browsing). So, if Comcast swears that it won't track users' browsing anymore, why does it still ask for permission to? Exhibit 1: Comcast's "Subscriber Agreement". May I direct your attention to section 5, entitled "Collection, Use and Disclosure Of Information On Subscriber Use", in which Comcast requests that you give permission for them to track (and sell) information about your browsing habits. I particularly like the part about how collecting information on users' browsing is "necessary to provide the Service". Note also that this exact "Subscriber Agreement" is required for ex-@Home users to move to Comcast's network. How fortunate that I just last week got notified about the avaiability of DSL in my area...."

It's not as simple as averaging "W" and "Y." marktwain writes: "Gene Steinberg probably has the most sensible rebuttal on his website http://www.macnightowl.com/ to Robert Cringely's recent article which Slashdot linked to, commented about, and which deserves a rebuttal. The whole idea of porting OS X is not only inane but is an idea which was flogged to death a year ago. And if Cringely's article wasn't bad enough, Slashdot kicked off with the equally inane "but Apples are so expensive" garbage. In today's world, dominated by the Wicked Wizard of Redmond, the penguins and the mac heads need to hang together and understand each other."

Getting the most of sky-high satellite costs. Jason Nunnelly sent in a note that he's updated his information on connecting a home network to the Net using satellite, a feat that can be difficult and expensive. Of course, when all your options are difficult and expensive, it might look like a pretty good idea. Read this information if you want to know how to save money on the connection and the hardware required, and some sobering words about technical support. (Check those hourly rates, too.)

Novel idea: require patents to have one. Cecil Bumfluff writes: "An update to a recent /. story regarding European proposals for software patents. It seems that unlike the US system, the vendor must prove they have made a "technical contribution to the state of the art". This seems a lot tougher than current US patent law. Check out the story at The Register"

Judge Dredd, or Judge Milquetoast? spellcheckur writes: "Remember the ACME Rent-a-car and GPS fiasco? The Boston Globe is reporting that ACME has been ordered to cease the practice and refund the money. One of the interesting conclusions in the article, they say the increased liability of a speeding car amounts to about $0.37 in insurance cost, not the $150 they were charging. Why is it then that my insurance gets to jack my rates two hundred bucks a year when I get one lousy ticket?"

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Slashback: Rebuttal, Satellite, Patents

Comments Filter:
  • Becasue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by amaprotu ( 527512 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:06PM (#3048461) Homepage
    "Why is it then that my insurance gets to jack my rates two hundred bucks a year when I get one lousy ticket?"

    .37 * 365 = $135. Going up $200 is a bit much maybe but not as much as you made it seem.
    • and just because he only got CAUGHT once, doesn't mean he was only speeding once.
      • and just because he only got CAUGHT once, doesn't mean he was only speeding once.

        Then what does it mean ? And what significance does it hold in this discussion ?

    • Re:Becasue (Score:3, Insightful)

      by lipbone ( 551309 )
      You pay more insurance because YOU got the ticket. Everyone pays a small amount to help pay for people like YOU. :P
    • > .37 * 365 = $135.

      So if someone gets a speeding ticket, that means he speeds 365 days a year.

      Does that also mean if you get two speeding tickets, you must be speeding 730 days a year, so your insurance bill should go up $400?
      • So if someone gets a speeding ticket, that means he speeds 365 days a year.

        From a liability standpoint, that is what you assume. Or rather, you assume that because he was caught speeding once, he will speed again. Thus he is a liability.

        Getting caught again just reafirms the initial assumption, which is why your rates will go up again.

        Remember, insurance isn't about what you -have done- it's about what you -might do-.
  • by edrugtrader ( 442064 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:06PM (#3048462) Homepage
    i use the internet for only a few things... and the main use is running servers.

    satellite is basically worthless... we can't think of the internet as a media outlet, it is an interactive environment... users aren't 'surfing the web' hoping for content just be spewed at them, they want to interact, and the uplink of most satellites makes even posting a lot of form data a problem.
    • Is the Starband box enough like an ADSL box to be compatible?
      I was setting up the IPCop firewall distro the other day and the setup screens had a configuration utility for setting up USB ADSL connections.

      The whole ISO is around 22MB, so it might be worth it for someone with the service to toy around with.

      Hope this helps someone.
      Cheers,
      Jim in Tokyo
  • Patents and Europe (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MosesJones ( 55544 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:07PM (#3048465) Homepage

    In other words its still the same over here. And the reason is simple

    THE US HAS TOO MANY LAWYERS

    Which means they have an approach of grant and challenge (i.e. in the courts, long and expensive process for everyone involved, normally leads to might is right), rather than the European challenge and grant, which means academics and other interested parties can challenge it before its given. The later gives patents that are rarely over-turned and rarely granted, the former, lots of over-turns of lots of patents.

    ITS THE LAWYERS MAKING MONEY HERE

    Having Lawyer driven processes is bad... hell even Dan Quayle spotted that one on 8/13/91 [xmission.com]!

    • THE US HAS TOO MANY LAWYERS
      In other news, water is wet ;)

      Hey, somebody had to say it...

    • by asv108 ( 141455 )
      I don't remember where I got this from but :

      If you want to complain about frivilous lawsuits, remember, lawyers don't sue people, plaintifs sue people.

      The only reason the US has so many lawsuits is because it's populus is sue happy. Don't blame the messengers, they are just meeting the demand.

      • Remind me to introduce you to the concept of "marketing" one day...
        • I think you need to be introduced to marketing, here is the standard definition:

          Marketing is the process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion, and distribution of ideas, goods, and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organizational goals.

          I think you're trying to incite that marketing creates demand which is totally false, marketing just matches buyers and sellers. Yes, there is persuasion involved but not enough to artificially increase supply. Perhaps you need to be introduced to the concept of "economics" and "marketing." I will be more than happy to recommend some good books.

          • I think you?re trying to incite that marketing creates demand which is totally false, marketing just matches buyers and sellers.

            And not a single smiley in there, darn, you realy belive this ?

            The primary goal of marketing is to "create" buyers for a particular product. I guess you have never seen the "Prepare to want one" commercial from Hyundai [hyundai-motor.com] (or was it Honda ?)

            The purpose is to *make people want to buy a particular product* weather they are already consumers of that type of product or not.

            Welcome to take-no-prisoners capitalism.

            Mr asv108, you are the weakest link, goodbye !

      • There are legal structures that encourage
        litigiousness and structures that discourage
        it. Maybe it's part national character, but
        it's also part the way the system is designed.
    • In addition:

      It will ALWAYS be that way as long as we let the lawyers make the laws

      • i'm no fan of lawyers, but it makes sense that professional legal experts be the ones who create laws. When you replace lawyers/laws with doctors/medical treatment, or programmers/code, or pilots/planes, it illustrates my point a little better. Any professional who has a vested interest in a field will not only have insightful ideas about how to improve that field, they will also represent their own self interests at the same time.
    • If anything this is a case of a company abusing its customers. If James Turner didn't get a lawyer and sue the rental store this crap would still be going on.

      Now back to your regularly scheduled knee-jerking.
  • Unmanned Radar (Score:2, Informative)

    by RumGunner ( 457733 )
    The courts in Anchorage, AK threw out unmanned radar, probably on the same grounds as this.

    No harm, no foul, I guess.
  • by mstrjon32 ( 542309 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:07PM (#3048470)
    I can't believe we're still discussing this at all. Apple is never going to port OS X to Intel, it just doesn't fit with their business model. Apple is a hardware company. They make their money selling a good package of reliable, solid hardware and powerful software. Mac OS X sells for about $100 and Apple is happy with its returns, they are not interested in selling it for $279 per license to suck the money out of the consumer. They don't even use software keys on it! Can we please let this issue die?
    • I think it's just software envy. OS X is mad stoopid tight (OK, so my fluency in colloquial hood is weak, sue me ;), even the most ardent penguin backers will admit as much. But, the majority of the geeks here don't have a G3+ Mac to run it on--or, any Mac at all for that matter--so we're reduced to pining for something like x86 OS X. Don't take it personally.
    • It's really unfortunate though, many intel people would LOVE the opportunity to use Mac OS X. I know I would. But simply put, I don't use desktops that I don't build myself. So, between the fact I have no ability to really build my own, and the fact that the Macs are far more expensive then PCs - it's never going to happen that purchace hardware that Mac OS X will run on.

      It's a shame, because it's a nice opperating system - but I'm not going to give up the freedoms of a commodity computer marketplace for it.
    • by Jason Earl ( 1894 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:42PM (#3048593) Homepage Journal

      A Macintosh is nothing more than a giant hardware key. Apple doesn't have to worry about installing pirated copies of Mac OS simply because you can't get Mac compatible hardware unless you buy it from them (with a Mac OS license, of course). I am surprised that they don't give the new software away. After all, what better way to sell new Apple hardware than to write software that is to bloated to use on your old hardware. That's why you can guarantee that new versions of OS X aren't going to run any better on G3s than they do now.

      Apple is a hardware company, the only reason they write software is to give their hardware something to do.

      As far as porting to x96 is concerned, Apple knows that the x86 OS market is getting a little crowded as it is. Between Linux, FreeBSD, and a handful of versions of Windows there is something for everyone. Linux and FreeBSD are having a hard time getting a run and they are available free of charge, come with source, and are actually getting pretty darn useable. Mac OS X wouldn't have a chance. Sure the interface is slick, but it won't run existing Windows software (and it wouldn't run existing Mac software either), it wouldn't support very much hardware (probably less than Linux), and you wouldn't be able to get it preinstalled. Bill and Co. would make sure of that.

      Apple has a fairly large market of users who are more than happy to pay premium prices for PC hardware, and they are happy with that. If Apple really wanted to see a Mac OS rennaisance what they need to do is price their hardware so that it is price competitive. Otherwise, no dice.

      • "I am surprised that they don't give the new software away."

        Because, like Microsoft, they like to rape every penny out of their users. Just because a fruit is the logo doesn't mean the company is any nicer.

        • My guess is that many Mac faithful would be tempted into buying new hardware if they got a taste of OS X and decided that it was cool (but way to slow on their old G3).

          Remember, Apple doesn't make any money if Macintosh users all decide that their old computer is fast enough. Nothing makes you want to throw out your old PC more than cool new software that runs like crap on your current hardware.

        • No company is "nice", the category isn't applicable.
          Apple's spending money on developers for OS X, so if
          they want to charge money for it, I don't see why
          they shouldn't. Do you think software designs,
          implements, integrates, tests and ships itself?
          Sheesh.
      • and it wouldn't run existing Mac software either...

        Eh? OSX runs all my OS9 apps very well.

        How did a post that says, "Mac OSX won't run existing Mac software" get up to a 5?
        • How did a post that says, "Mac OSX won't run existing Mac software" get up to a 5?

          Perhaps because the context was Mac OS X on Intel hardware? I very much doubt that a port would run OS 9 PPC software out of the box, and even if it did, it would be at a prohibitive decrease in processing speed.

      • Apple is a hardware company, the only reason they write software is to give their hardware something to do.

        No, they aren't.

        If Apple was a hardware company, they would cough up the programming specs on their machines so that alternate operating systems could be written for it. As it is, any alternate OS wishing to support Apple hardware must engage in a lengthy and expensive process of reverse-engineering. Open-sourcing Darwin makes this process (slightly) easier, but it's no substitute for having actual docs. This is why Be abandoned the PowerMac platform (and ultimately the PowerPC), since Apple kept changing things.

        Further, if Apple was a hardware company, they would encourage porting of alternate operating systems to their hardware, as it would allow meaningful performance comparisons between Apple systems and PC systems. You'd be able to compare apples to Apples (so to speak) and truly see how Apple's hardware stacks up.

        Also, if Apple was a hardware company, they would use some of their magnificent industrial design prowess to create some PC peripherals, and siphon off some Wintel dollars. They don't even have to design an actual PC; just the casework and accessories. Hell, wouldn't you be more likely to buy one of those Apple Cinema displays if it had a standard VGA connector?

        So, no, Apple is not a hardware company.

        Schwab

    • Cringely is a moron (-1 redundant).

      This has been discussed so many times that I can't believe that I have not seen it here yet. MacOSX will never go on Intel because of hardware issues. Either 1) Apple has to support an infinite variety of hardware configurations at immense cost or 2) vendors will create their own drivers which lead to tremendous instability in the system and (unfairly) harm the repuatation of the OS.

      How many Linux hackers are there around the world trying to keep hardware drivers up to date? And despite this huge effort, how much hardware is still not supported under Linux (with a reasonably complete feature set)?

      One possible answer would be for Apple to specify a small number of officially supported systems, a number sufficiently small that the hardware can be fully supported. What is going to happen the first time someone comes home from Circuit City with an unsupported peripheral and decides that the OS sucks? People in the Linux community expect this and know to look out for it, but what will the regular Wintel/PC crowd think?

      Another redundancy: the Apple market share may not be large, but the total market is still huge compared to many industries. They do not need these shenanigans.

    • Why are they so deadset on being a hardware company? Their hardware is overpriced. They are not competitive in the hardware field. Their software, on the other hand, is both reasonably priced and superior to most other offerings. So why in God's name are they sacrificing their best division's profitablitity to prop up their weak hardware?


      Before you all come back with "but macs are so well built," admit that if there were no mac OS, if Windows were ported to the G3/4, would you have bought a mac? I didn't think so.


      Finally, it's not like there's some enormous future reward to being a hardware company. Think about it, who would you rather be: Microsoft or Intel? I've just never understood Apple's strategy...

    • In his article, Cringlely talks about how Borland gave MS a run for their money, and probably could have won out if not for their own mistakes.

      Here's the problem with that argument: Microsoft didn't have much in the way of development tools at the time (i.e., they were vulnerable), so Borland was able to jump ahead and later maintain parity in marketshare with MS.

      Apple is not in that situation. MS is very cognizant of the need to control the desktop, they have poured a ton of money into it, and they now control ~90% to Apple's ~5%. Apple is not in a position to leap ahead of MS because MS has already stolen most of the functional advances of the Mac OS, and they continue to steal shamelessly from Apple, from the bundling of video editing software right down to putting an "X" in the OS nomenclature.

      Be had a vastly superior OS to Windows 9x; why didn't Be eat MS's lunch? MS was way too far ahead in the game, that's why. BeOS's superior architecture was understood and appreciated by maybe 1% of Windows users, but it wasn't enough to convince the other 99% to switch.

      Maybe if Apple could magically convince every existing PC developer to develop for OS X first, and then maybe port to Windows, then yeah, OS X on Intel *might* have a shot at converting people in the long haul. It just ain't gonna happen, though.

      Personally, I think Cringely couldn't come up with a good column for last week, so he said to himself, "Hey, I'll just talk about Mac OS on Intel again, that's always good for lively debate!" Cringely is a smart fellow who's well-read about the tech industry. I have a hard time believing that he actually thinks OS X on Intel would serve Apple well in the industry's current monopolistic state. In fact, I found his article disappointing and a little insulting.
  • Wtf? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by flegged ( 227082 ) <anything @ my third level domain> on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:19PM (#3048509) Homepage
    In today's world, dominated by the Wicked Wizard of Redmond, the penguins and the mac heads need to hang together and understand each other

    Except that Apple have their own monopoly; only their business practives are worse than those of Microsoft - the only reason their market share is so small compared to MS is the price of the hardware.

    Remember, the Free Software Foundation have never imposed a boycott on Microsoft. They have on Apple.
    • Re:Wtf? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by doooras ( 543177 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:44PM (#3048596)
      that sort of reminds me of this:

      In late 1999, Apple CEO Steve Jobs telephoned Stephens(Adaptec CEO). "I want the source code for your CD burner on my desk today, or you'll never do business with Apple again," Jobs said.

      Jobs seemingly (and boldly) wanted to examine the source code for possible inclusion in Apple's forthcoming OS, but Stephens, unwilling to give up proprietary information, politely explained that Adaptec would be happy to work out a licensing plan instead. So Stephens said, "With a healthy share of the Macintosh CD software market already and not a whole lot of business done directly with Apple these days, doesn't it seem...."

      Click. Jobs hung up. Stephens was baffled.


      From PC Magazine

      Jobs makes me laugh. That takes some big rocks.
      • Do Macs come with any scsi standard anymore? I know their HDD are all IDE now, right? It seems like Apple would be nowhere nearly as important to Adaptec as they were 5 yrs ago when it seems like Apple was 100% scsi as a potential buyer of scsi chipsets.

        ostiguy
        • No Mac comes with SCSI standard anymore (unless you count the highest end Power Mac Server which is a "custom build" anyway). The Power Macs can add an Ultra SCSI card as an option, basically to support people's old SCSI peripherals. They can also get an Ultra160 SCSI card (dual channel) but only if they buy an Ultra160 SCSI drive.

          I believe Apple has and does use Adaptec SCSI chips and cards. Adaptec does not support those cards, Apple does so when people have had problems with them (like not being bootable), Adaptec just pointed a finger and said, "don't tell us, tell Apple."
      • That's exactly the kind of "monopolistic practice" people blame MS for.
    • Re:Wtf? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by inkswamp ( 233692 )
      Knock knock!

      Who's there?

      Yet another Usenet-inspired Wintroll.

      Yet another Usenet-inspired Wintroll who?

      Except that Apple have their own monopoly; only their business practives are worse than those of Microsoft

      Standard-issue claim about Apple. They are not a monopoly. Other companies have attempted to create OSes for Apple hardware, but they inevitably fail because that's not what Mac users want. Note that Apple doesn't do anything to actively stop companies from trying to compete. In fact, until OS X, Apple was actively backing LinuxPPC (including having part of their site devoted to it.) Does Microsoft have any pages about Linux like that?

      Someone should tell Apple that's no way to run a monopoly!

      Anyway, cite some examples of Apple putting competition out of business with underhanded practices and monopolistic practices. Cite some examples of Apple being caught stealing the source code from other companies. Cite examples of Apple "embracing and extending" the work of others. Cite any instance where Apple dragged their feet on a glaring security patch until the bad press was enough to warrant it. Cite some horror stories about Apple's tech support that rival the endless stories about indifferent and clueless help desks at MS.

      These are two very different companies. Apple is no MS.

      the only reason their market share is so small compared to MS is the price of the hardware.

      This price complaint is another standard-issue Wintroll claim. It's because Apple was clueless about marketing in the late 80s and early 90s and they left an opening that was easy for MS to fill. End of story.

      Remember, the Free Software Foundation have never imposed a boycott on Microsoft. They have on Apple.

      Yeah, the police have never ticketted a pedestrian for speeding either. At least Apple has actually done something that Free Software Foundation could criticize. If MS does nothing, they can't be criticized. Your complaint is silly.

      --Rick
      • Yet another Usenet-inspired Wintroll

        Usenet sucks.

        Apple doesn't do anything to actively stop companies from trying to compete

        Tell that to Be, or any of the Mac clone makers.

        Cite some examples of Apple being caught stealing the source code from other companies

        I cite the example given in another reply to my original post. If you are referring to the BSD code in Win2k, then please remember that BSD is BSD licensed. Apple have done precisely the same, with the same BSD code, except they took the entire kernel, instead of a few protocol clients (ftp, finger etc)

        Cite examples of Apple "embracing and extending" the work of others

        Apple would never be able to. Emracing and extending is a good thing, as long as it doesn't break compatibility. Cite an example of MS breaking compatibility by doing so.

        Cite any instance where Apple dragged their feet on a glaring security patch until the bad press was enough to warrant it

        How about the holes they introduced into Apache?

        Cite some horror stories about Apple's tech support

        Have you ever had to help a Mac user get himself a clue? Apples tech support is limited and patronising.

        At least Apple has actually done something that Free Software Foundation could criticize

        What the fuck? Are you saying that this is a good thing? Is it also good if I commit murder, rather than another person not comminting murder, because I would have at least done something? Stupid analogy, I know, but, as they say, ask a stupid question...
        • Tell that to Be, or any of the Mac clone makers.


          Apple didn't stop Be from doing anything. Be wanted specs handed to them on a silver platter, Apple said they could figure it out themselves (which is possible, as the existence of Linux and BSD ports shows). Instead Be decided to go after the Intel space, where they received far worse treatment from MS (see recent /. story about MS OEM agreements preventing alternative OSes).


          Apple have done precisely the same, with the same BSD code, except they took the entire kernel, instead of a few protocol clients (ftp, finger etc)


          And released their modifications as open source, which they didn't have to do. Further, they've also released a great deal of their own code.


          Emracing and extending is a good thing, as long as it doesn't break compatibility. Cite an example of MS breaking compatibility by doing so.


          Kerberos and Java come immediately to mind.


          How about the holes they introduced into Apache?


          Huh? Reference please. Does it compare even remotely to MS continuing to ship XP for weeks after the gaping hole in UPnP was found?


          Apples tech support is limited and patronising.


          And you say this based on what evidence? Apple has been consistently rated as having good support compared to other manufacturers (not that that says a whole lot...)


          I really don't understand your hostility. Apple is among the most open source-friendly of all companies, and they've successfully brought Unix to the normal user. They're certainly not perfect, but who is?

    • Saying that Apple has a monopoly on Macs is like saying that Ford has a monopoly on Mustangs.

      Sure, but there are thousands of other cars out there that you can purchase. You want a Mustang, though, you have to go to a Ford dealer. You want a Mac, you go to Apple.

      In fact, nothing is keeping anyone from putting together a computer using the PowerPC even. Slashdot even had an article on PowerPC motherboards for sale.

      So you want an Apple, but you do not want to buy from Apple? How is that any different than saying you want a Dell but you are unwilling to buy from Dell?

      No, Apple does not have a monopoly.

      And the FSF boycott was a result of Apple's first attempt at *open sourcing* Darwin, was it not?

      As for other people on this thread commenting on Be: The *BSD's and LinuxPPC is proof that you can figure out what is going on in the new machines (indeed, OpenFirmware made things even easier). Be, for whatever reason, decided to try to smear Apple during Be's decision to go to the Intel platform because Apple would not just hand over the specs.

      Apple may not have helped Be at all, but they certainly did not stand in their way at all, either, just as it has not stood in the way of LinuxPPC (even going as far as to help that development out).

      Calling for anything else is asking Apple to change its business plan in a way that will *definitely* hurt its bottom line.
  • by RedWizzard ( 192002 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:23PM (#3048526)
    The article's main argument is that OS X on Intel would be suicide for Apple because no-one would buy Apple hardware over cheaper Intel boxes. So it's pretty ironic that marktwain takes a swipe at the "Macs are expensive crowd":
    Slashdot kicked off with the equally inane "but Apples are so expensive" garbage
  • by Ryu2 ( 89645 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:25PM (#3048532) Homepage Journal
    Contrary to popular belief, there IS a solution for running classic Mac apps on intel (Windows/Linux): check out ARDI Executor [ardi.com] The software has existed for 5+ years, and although it's horribly dated by modern standards (no PPC support, only System 7 support), it basically emulates a 68K Mac and System software using clean room techniques to avoid legal trouble with Apple. It's actually pretty cool.

    It's either that, or Connectix needs to come out with a NATIVE OS X version of Virtual PC (not just carbonized) in order for OS X to totally bridge the Mac/PC gap.
    • It's either that, or Connectix needs to come out with a NATIVE OS X version of Virtual PC (not just carbonized) in order for OS X to totally bridge the Mac/PC gap.

      Carbonized is native on Mac OS X. There is this persistent belief that a carbonized application is somehow not a "proper" Mac OS X application. This is partly caused by Apple's marketing spin that Carbon is only a transitionary technology.

      Ignore the marketing guff for a moment and look at the technical issues. Carbon is a peer o/s layer of Cocoa. An application written to the Carbon APIs is just as much "native" as a Cocoa application. Underneath they both call down to the same underlying layers (Aqua, Darwin, QuickTime...). There are no real advantages of Cocoa over Carbon, except for the excellent development tools available under Cocoa.

      Its time this myth was put to bed once and for all. Carbon is native Mac OS X.

    • Connectix needs to come out with a NATIVE OS X version of Virtual PC (not just carbonized)


      "Carbonized" is native, unless you're using either or both of those terms in a very unusual way.

    • SoftMac2000 is even better than ARDI (IMO), and the freely available BasiliskII is even better than that.

      And even though it's strictly for legacy apps (no PPC support), it still is pretty cool.

      Regardless, this is a bit off topic, as none of the above have PPC support and none of the above will run OS X. (SoftMac2000 has been promising PPC support real-soon-now for years, but nothing yet.)

      -me
    • Carbon under OSX runs just as natively as Cocoa does.

      They're just two different API's which run under the same operating system, and use the same system calls.

      Any half-decent Apple programmer can tell you that there's very little difference, performance-wise, between the two. Cocoa gives you good integration with the Dock, and all the other cool CoreFoundation stuff, and Carbon gives your older code a new place to live in a happy environment while you start to learn how to use the newer Cocoa API's for the next version.

      You're confusing Carbon with Classic. Don't worry though, a lot of people do, but it's a pretty uneducated mistake.

      And, by the way, VPC5.0.2 under OSX is rock solid, and very, very usable (even though it is ... ahem, 'carbonized' ...).

      I have used it to replace 5 Linux boxes previously used for development with my single titanium powerbook... pretty damned nice, to be honest. I don't think I'll ever run Linux on Intel hardware, directly, for a long time.
  • by Ryu2 ( 89645 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:33PM (#3048566) Homepage Journal
    My home system was running DirecPC. I have 7 machines, (MAC, BSD, Microsoft, Linux) all running on a network. Some of the machines (one remote and one laptop) are using a D-Link wireless network. All machines roll up to Netopia R9100 Switch/Router/Firewall/DHCPd daemon. It is a very nice piece of equipment and I've NEVER had any problems with it. The Netopia cross-connects to a PC running Windows 2000 Pro SP2 with the roll-up patches and such. The Windows 2000 Pro machine serves as the gateway bridge to the internet. The DirecPC equipment is connected to this machine via a USB port

    Why not just use Windows Internet Connection sharing, which basically implements a DHCP server/router? As long as you have a Windows box in the first place, just use that -- why do you need the extra "Netopia" hardware as well?
    • One reason would be the switch. The price difference between a basic switching hub and one with WAN uplink/firewall/nat/etc is about $40. And why run an entire PC when a six inch black box with no moving parts will do the same thing, and likely do it better?

      LEXX
      • The point is that apparently, the satellite modem driver only works with Windows for now, so as long as you NEED a Windows box anyways, why use the extra hardware. The hardware is indeed more reliable, but still, the weakest link is still going to be that Windows box anyways, so the hardware router would not increase reliability in general.
  • OS X on intel? what (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    OS X on intel is not the answer. Mac holds about 5% of the market. Well that is what I have been told It sure as heck seems bigger but lets say that 5% is true. What can appple do to get more then 5% and still keep control of hardware, and make all these OS X on Intel freakes happy.

    2 simple steps

    Step 1.
    Make a head less Imac with no super drive as the low end. the super drive adds like $400 to the cost of the system and the LCD adds between 400 - 600. so if we cut those out you are left with a good sub 600$ system that will run X.

    Step 2.
    There is no step two. :)

    This is the only way for apple to get more the 5% of the market they will have to win in the sub 500 system area. Think about it, if it had a TV hook up on it and a simple remote , it would be the digital hub ,end of story.

    When your cheapest system that is current is a laptop you have done something wrong.
  • by t0qer ( 230538 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:44PM (#3048595) Homepage Journal
    These were all very good article's, but they are happy feel good articles, sorta like what you would see on any local news stations.

    I'd like to see more articles relating to what a lot of us nerds have been going through lately. I'm talking about dealing with the current economy, unemployment, depression. Reading this [slashdot.org] posts responses one can only assume that there are a lot us out here in the same boat.

    I want to see more stories about how to get through these issues. Maybe some nerd recipe sharing for those on budgets. How about articles that deal with where the money that used to go into the technology sector went. Give me something more to do with my day than hitting refresh on slashdot.org to see what new stories are there. How about stories on places nerds can use their skills in a volunteer position? There are many ways slash can help, please start doing something different.
    • If you are on a tight budget, or unemployed, you should not be worrying about places to volunteer. Maybe get off the free-software wagon and go join the capitalists. After you are producing surplus, then you can start thinking about helping others.

  • by WasterDave ( 20047 ) <`davep' `at' `zedkep.com'> on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:44PM (#3048597)
    So they charge you $200 more if you get a speeding ticket. Do you pay it? Well, there you are, they charge more because they can.

    Dave
    • That's a stupid conclusion. It's not like he can not have insurance if he thinks it's too expensive. In most areas insurance is required by law. Even if it's regulated, the insurance companies are going to charge you as much as the can because you have no choice but to pay. You can go to another company, but they'll have the same regulated rates.

      The real problem is that cops give out speeding tickets instead of reckless driving tickets. It's possible to drave safely at 80mph, but people who are darting from lane to lane (usually with no signal) are the real problem. It's easier to catch the speeders tough, and they really only care about the money (They could give two shits if you kill yourself, as long as your insurance company pays for any damage to the road). They just enforce the speed limit, collect their checks, and are done with it.

      What really pisses me off is when I see a speeding trap with like 10 patrol cars, and then a mile up I see someone stuck on the side of the road needing help, but the cops are too busy speeding by to give out tickets to stop and help the guy that's stuck. What do we pay for these people for?
      • The badge reads 'To serve and protect'... but...

        I know of town in my state (midwest) where the cops were actually voted on the premise that they were not providing enought property protection... instead, they where pulling people over for DUI and busting for smoking pot.

        Overall, the people were OK with smoking pot and going to the bar... and they were pissed off the the newbie cops were gung-ho about busting people.

        So they go rid of them.

        Probably not the best example, but my point is that:

        1. Cops are a public service. If they are not providing the service the public wants, then the public should do something.

        2. Property siezure laws for drug crimes allow the cops to make money off their actions... which I think if fundamentally wrong. Law enforcencement should be a money losing action, that's why we pay taxes to have it.

      • That's a stupid conclusion. It's not like he can not have insurance if he thinks it's too expensive.

        But he can always shop around and find a different insurer. Or flog his dented 911 and buy a honda civic. The basic principles of the free market remain the same: This is what it costs, pay yes/no?

        Dave
  • by BrookHarty ( 9119 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @07:50PM (#3048624) Homepage Journal
    ..they say the increased liability of a speeding car amounts to about $0.37 in insurance cost, not the $150 they were charging.

    Really sucks if you get a divorce or have a medical problem, and then they nicely raise your rates for no reason other than your credit rating changes. Here in Washington state insurance companies are getting away with murder, if you have low credit or bad credit they want to charge you more, even if you have a perfect driving record. This is known as Credit Scoring, and our Gov. Gary Locke is trying to pass a bill to make it illegal.

    I love that scene in fight club where the insurance companies are blown up. :)
    • It's interesting that you talk about this, becuase I just listened to a segment on Market Place (often NPR, produced by UMN) about this very thing.

      The defense that the insurance companies gave was two fold:

      1. A person who has a poor credit rating (they mentioned spec. late payments or many open lines of credit) is more likely to take risks, i.e. go for the yellow light at a stop light as opposed to stopping.

      2. They claim that MORE people get better rates using credit ratings...

      It's an interesting concept. One of the major complaints brought up was issues of identity theft. I think that if a person is suffering from identiy theft, they will probably have many problems, not just the insurance, but I can see how adding this to the list would suck.

      I don't know if I agree or not, but it is interesting. I do believe that this very much ties in with our loss of privacy. What's to stop the insurance company from raising the rates of someone who often uses their credit (or debit) card at a liquor store? Or if they use the card in a place that has a high occurence of hit and runs???

      I think it is just a matter of time before these items get tied into the variables that define the risk you are to a insurance company.

    • It costs more to live alone. There is less shared expenses. When I was single and broke, I was driving a car with over 200K miles in poor mechanical shape. An older car that hasn't had a major brake job (wheel cylinders calipers drums/rotors turned etc) and just got pads replaced in the driveway after the rivits got too loud is a higher risk vehicle. Some people can not afford preventive maitenance. Some times the choice is insurance or tires. Insurance is mandentory. Tires can wait. They will replace a wheel cylinder or flexible brake line after it fails, not before. (been there done that. was lucky the park brake worked and not in heavy traffic.) Of course they need to charge for the higher risk. They raise the rates to cover the increased risk of poorly maintained cars. Thank goodness I'm no longer in that economic class anymore. I hate to say it, but I don't want to subsidise high risk vehicles on the road.
      • Its not like the UK where you can take buses or trains, in the US, you must have a car. Seattle has pushed the light rail back for 15 years now, We have no idea when we will get it.

        Humm, If you count all the extra expense that lower income people pay, its a wonder how people make it. If you have no credit you must pay deposits, you have higher rates on goods, the only thing the same is fixed goods. Prepaid services are 30-80% higher, and thier target market is low income households and kids.

        Nice aint it?

      • It costs more to live alone.

        Funny. It costs me WAY more to support a wife'n'kids.

  • Slashdot kicked off with the equally inane "but Apples are so expensive" garbage

    I wouldn't call this argument "garbage". As someone who grew up on a macintosh and couldn't think of anything else, I now use a pc (yay linux!). Why? Because macs are expensive. I'm not trying to flame; they just are very expensive.

    The typical reply is that iMacs are cheap. That's why I told my parents to get one. For the rest of us who actually use computers, we want a computer we can take apart and fiddle around with. Macs just can't do this.

    I'm sorry, but Macs are expensive. And this is also why we won't see MacOSX on PCs anytime soon -- hardware is how Apple makes its money. If they don't sell the hardware bundled with the OS, they won't keep making that profit they like so much.

    In today's world, dominated by the Wicked Wizard of Redmond, the penguins and the mac heads need to hang together and understand each other.

    I don't understand why we need to do that. Apple is a for-profit company. They would be doing what Microsoft is doing if they had the chance. Remember how they sued Microsoft for having a windowing OS? Remember how they sued people for making iMac clones? Remember how they smashed all the aqua themes as fast as they came? "[T]he penguins and the mac heads" don't need to stick together -- they're after totally different goals. On one end, superb computing, on the other end, profit.

    I've tried to make this as non-flamey as possible, but this topic always causes a flame war. Please read my arguments carefully before you respond.
    • by gwernol ( 167574 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @08:26PM (#3048756)

      I'm not trying to flame; they just are very expensive. The typical reply is that iMacs are cheap. That's why I told my parents to get one. For the rest of us who actually use computers, we want a computer we can take apart and fiddle around with. Macs just can't do this.

      Okay, this is funny for two reasons. First just stop and think for a moment about: "...they just are very expensive... iMacs are cheap...". Ummm, so what you're saying is Apple sell a cheap line of computers (starting at $799) and a more expensive line? That doesn't seem unreasonable, and it also seems to contradict the rest of your argument. Just because some Macs are expensive doesn't mean all Macs are expensive.

      But even more priceless is: "For the rest of us who actually use computers, we want a computer we can take apart and fiddle around with". Which is hilarious. Because the "we" who want to open up our computers and fiddle with them are the tiny, tiny minority of computer users. Most people don't want to ever open up the case of their computer. Ever. They wouldn't do it if you paid them.

      This is why machines like the Mac and most PCs are so popular. Most users don't want to be hardware engineers or system configurators. Machines "for the rest of us" (to borrow an Apple marketing slogan) are sealed units that people will never open. Being a geek is a noble and wonderful thing, but don't for a second forget that we are highly atypical computer users. What we want is not what the mass market wants.

    • Thank you for trying not to flame. I try too ;-)

      "we want a computer we can take apart and fiddle around with. Macs just can't do this."

      This is silly. The only Macs that you can't take apart are the low-end stuff. What geek is happy with low-end anyway? The Towers are very easy to open up. For christ's sake, they won *design awards* for how easy they are to open up. Besides the motherboard, there really isn't much that you can't upgrade/fiddle with. Just last week I went to a local computer fair (PC stuff) and bought the cheapest 60GB ATA drive I could find. I stuck it in the slave drive bay and formated it. The whole operation took about 5 minutes. Not many people want to do complete motherboard swaps or want to build their own computer. Please tell me: what do you want to fiddle around with exactly?

      I'm trying not to flame here but I'm sick of people making vague comments about why Macs aren't as good as PCs (we need a better name for this, wintel/lintel doesn't cut it). Here are some classics (not saying that you believe all of them):

      • They're too expensive - show me a comparable *pre-built* PC (ie. Compaq/Dell) with a significantly lower price. The TCO of Macs is actually sometimes lower [apple.com.au] than PCs. You have to take service/maintenance costs into account as well as the purchase price. Note: that's an Apple link but they didn't do the study.
      • You can't upgrade them - already answered this one.
      • No applications - this tends to be a Windows zealot comment. All the good stuff is on the Mac (well the stuff I use anyway :-).
      • Not open source - Apple has made Mac OS X as open source as they can (Darwin) without loosing money to cheap knock-offs. They can't release the crown jewels, they are a for-profit company.
      • One button mouse - For once I agree. Apple mice should be two button but, by default, make both buttons do the same thing (left button) to be easy on newbies. The experienced user can "turn on" the right button. "Just buy a 2 button mouse" doesn't help notebook users who don't want stuff hanging off their machine.

      I've missed some I'm sure. The Mac has some very real cons (working VNC would be nice, one that actually displays the cursor!), and I don't mind people griping about them but these are just FUD.

      So that I'm not completely off topic, the guy that wrote the Mac OS X on Intel article is right. Unless Apple starts becoming a software company, this isn't going to happen. Apple is even more of a hardware company now than it was 5 years ago. Apple is giving away software for free and charging a lot less for Mac OS X than they could.

      They seem to be reverting to their pre-system 7 days, where you bought a Mac and all the Apple software was free. IIRC, system 7 was the first MacOS they charged for.

      I hope that wasn't a flame :-)

  • by SEE ( 7681 ) on Thursday February 21, 2002 @08:19PM (#3048736) Homepage
    . . . Apple hardware isn't overpriced, but OS X on x86 would kill Apple, because everybody would flock to the comparably priced alternative hardware that isn't compatible with any legacy Mac apps.

    Look, the Mac clones were, when it came down to the hardware, real Macs assembled by people other than Apple. Nobody argued that the Mac clone hardware was not equal to that in an Apple Mac. All the arguments for OS X on Intel argue that Intel hardware won't satisfy people who want Mac hardware. While this argument may be fallacious, it is *not* refutable simply by bringing up the Mac clones.

    Instead, the basic argument against Cringley is that Mac hardware isn't worth the premium over x86 hardware. That is, that Mac hardware is overpriced relative to equivalent PC hardware, and only can sell because the OS and software makes up for the cost differential. That Mac hardware, dollar per dollar, is inferior to x86 hardware.

    • by maggard ( 5579 )
      There weren't any Mac clones (ok, a very few long ago that got quickly litigated into oblivion.)

      However there were licensees which is a whole 'nother thing. Clones just rip off the product, licensees have an arrangement with the owner, contracts, payment schedules, etc.

      In Apple's case they were having production, inventory & cost-control issues so they figured let some other folks into the pool, expand the market. Apple would keep the mid and upper-end NA & European markets for itself, others could service the super-premium, budget, Asian, educational, and gamer markets. Unfortunately many of these companies soon stopped expanding the market and just went for the low-hanging fruit: Apple's own sales.

      Instead of bringing in lots of new Mac users from markets Apple wasn't strong in (or not particularly profitable) instead Apple found itself competing with their own licensees on their own turf with their own technologies and own their compatibility assurances etc. It was cannibalism and Apple was the one getting eaten. Every time Power Computing sold one of their Macs it was at the cost of Apple selling one, and instead of that sale bringing in $$$ it was bringing in $, all while Apple was hemorrhaging money.

      Did they shut down the licensees? Damn right - if they hadn't Apple'd have been bled dry pretty darn quick. Sure no Apple would have meant no Mac market but that wasn't the licensees concern, they'd gotten contracts allowing them to buy MacOS ROMs and sell MacOS 7.0 at a great price and they were busy undercutting Apple and making super money.

      So finally Apple took advantage of the contracts, refused to write a new license for the new MacOS 7.5 and then used the buy-out clause to shut the licensees down. Did they scream? Sure, they'd been milking an expensive cow for cheap, who wouldn't scream to see that taken away. But was it shutting down "clones"? No, it was all legal, no cloning there.

      Wintel PCs on the other hand: IBM never locked wily Bill Gates into an exclusive for DOS. Bill was happy to sell a custom version to anyone who ponied up and when the plethora of versions became too great released the generic and soon to be standard MS DOS.

      Later the subtly-incompatible-in-different-ways BIOS issue was surmounted when the IBM PC BIOS was legally reverse-engineered and at that point the cat was out of the bag. IBM had never wanted clones, never expected them, and fought long and mightily against them but was never able to eradicate them.

      Clever strategy? No, awful mistake. While the market wouldn't have grown as explosively most folks agree that had IBM kept control of their PC design they'd have made multiples of what they did off of it, would likely have "owned" the market. Anyway, IBM came out with MicroChannel and the PS/2 design and OS/2 which were all attempts to redefine the "IBM PC" back to something IBM controlled but to no avail - and trust me Apple had watched and learned and made sure those MacOS ROMs were crucial.

      Now - the ROMs are gone. They're a file loaded like any other. You can even download the core of MacOS X and Apple has kindly ported it to x86. They've kept the upper levels to themselves but Darwin (and particularly with X on top) is a usable OS with some nifty architectural features. After flirtations with standardized PowerPC platforms (PREP, CHRP, etc - at one point there was such compatibility it is rumored that it was possible to boot a legit MacOS on an IBM RS-6000) Apple has instead gone to industry standard hardware with IDE, PCI, AGP, etc - just their own North & South Bridges and Open Firmware instead of the ancient BIOS.

      What keeps folks from producing PowerPC-based Mac clones? Well the non-embedded PowerPC motherboard market is pretty small and somewhat pricey. There are also the legions of rabid Apple lawyers. Finally while Darwin is a start on MacOS X it's certainly not the whole thing and without Quartz/Aqua/Carbon/Cocoa/Etc. nobody is going to even try to label the thing "Mac". Apple probably does lose some sales to folks running QuickTime servers on Darwin but hey, it gets QuickTime more exposure, likely results in some outside development on Darwin that can be rolled back into MacOS X and it's not all that big a loss. Besides - that's not a clone either.

  • Look, just because Apple changes the processor OS X runs on doesn't mean that Dells and Compaqs will be able to use it. It shouldn't be hard for for Apple to come up with some hardware feature that prevents normal x86 hardware from running OS X.

    Back in the days when Amigas were the cool machines with great graphics, they used the same processor architecture as Macs. Did Amiga sales cannibalize Mac sales? Not much. Amigas didn't have the copyrighted Mac ROMs. Apple can do the same with x86.

    There. No cannibalization of their existing business. Yet they get to take advantage of a processor architechure that is faster, and getting faster all the time.

    Look, I don't WANT the dominant processor architecture to be one of the cruftiest ones around. But it IS the dominant processor architecture. The chips are cheaper and faster. Yes, there would be pain in such a switch. But Apple pulled it off pretty well last time. Apple shouldn't let pride and fear hold them back.
  • Mac OS X was derived from NeXTStep, which did run on Intel as well as Motorola hardware. A number of the earlier Developer Releases, back when it was still only known as "Rhapsody", still ran on Intel hardware.
  • Steve Jobs, to be exact.

    The man has a vision, no one can deny that. But he has an obsessive desire to control every aspect of the computing experience with a zeal few in the industry have ever been able to even approach, much less match.

    He has a long-standing history of making sure Macs are as non-expandable as possible. Which doesn't mean he's going to bolt the G4 case closed, but he is going to limit expansion options as much as possible where it won't ruin sales of the particular model.

    He wants uniformity across the line in every way possible. Even programming a theme creation app is enough to bring the wrath of Apple Legal down upon you. Of course, the offical reason is that a user could possibly violate Apple's trademarks with such a program, but really, everyone knows that it is to protect Aqua.

    Apple likes to control its hardware and its software. Moreso than even Microsoft. They go to extrodinary lengths to make sure what ships from the factory is what ends up being thrown away years later.

    The whole "you can mess with the BSD/Mach stuff" in OS X is nothing more than a bone thrown to the community. The stuff they use is already out there, so it's better for Apple to just let it remain so. People buy-into the idea that Apple is somehow a reasonably friendly company that won't screw you over. But that's a fantasy, I'm afraid. One proven countless times by various actions by the company as it has strived to maintain it's control over every aspect of the platform and the experince a user has interacting with it.

    But people defend them because they are Apple and not Microsoft. People want to see an alternative and they are willing to accept any one that bills itself as being better, even if the painful reality is far different than they want it to be.

    The point is, Apple wants to have an extremly high-level of control over every aspect of your computing experience. In many ways, even Microsoft is less restrictive. x86 hardware - even with some sort of ROM - would be the complete and total antethisis of what Apple consideres to be acceptable. They would quickly lose control over the platform, and their (Steve's) vision of the computing experience would be completely and utterly undermined.
    • Why is it evil for a company to want to control every aspect of their product in the hands of users. Should Ford use Mopar parts? Should they be forced to use Mopar parts because I decide I want them in my Ford car? Should I be able to stick Motorcraft parts in a Neon or Intrpid? Who the fuck are you to tell me what my product should and shouldn't do? If you don't like it ignore it. I defend Apple's position not because I dislike Microsoft or some absurd Linux zealot binary view of the world but because your premise, that a company should not have control over their product, is just plain stupid. If you want a say in how a company does things invest enough into them to have a say in their operations. It is their fucking product, unless you want to foot the bill to fab microelectronics and program an entire operating system and software to go along with it shut the fuck up.
  • OS X on Intel (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 2nd Post! ( 213333 ) <gundbear@[ ]bell.net ['pac' in gap]> on Thursday February 21, 2002 @08:36PM (#3048796) Homepage
    Disclaimer: I would love OS X on Intel. Since I can't have it, I bought a Mac.

    Let's see if I can proactively shoot down all the OS X on Intel crowd.

    Here's my base assumptions:
    Everything Apple does has to be advantageous (barring idiocy)
    Advantageous to itself
    Advantageous to it's current installed base
    Advantageous to it's target market

    Porting OS X to x86 in of itself implies several questions:

    Dual architecture support
    Legacy support (Classic)
    Clones
    Hardware limitations

    So let's answer the questions.

    If Apple ports OS X to x86, is it advantageous to itself?

    Apple gains more options. Options are good. Apple is burdened with more support variables. Complexity is bad. Apple gets more thorough testing. Diversity is good. Conclusion: Existence of OS X86 is good.

    If Apple ports OS X to x86, is it advantageous to customers?
    If it means producing a new line of x86 hardware:

    Customers get more choice. Choice is good. Performance is a question, but supposedly better. Better performance is good. Apple is burdened with more support variables. Complexity is bad. Apple gets more thorough testing. Diversity is good. Developers have to undergo another transition, unless they use Cocoa. Loss of developer support is bad. Virtual PC would perform better under OS X86. Better performance is better. Conclusion: No change for Apple.

    If it means releasing the OS only:

    Customers get more choice. Choice is good. Apple is burdened with *many* more support variables. Complexity is bad. Apple gets less thorough testing. Complexity is bad. Developers would have another platform to support. Diversity, while good, is expensive. Expect no software except through Cocoa or VirtualPC. Apple gets more customers. Good. Apple sells cheaper product; lower revenue, lower margins? Arguably bad. Conclusion: Apple loses.

    If it means doing both:
    Combine both situations, and Apple loses. Not to mention that in order to support the current market base, Apple would need to emulate the 68k under Classic, which itself would need to be ported, and which probably also requires PPC emulation.

    If Apple ports OS X to x86, is it advantageous to it's target market?

    Flat out: No. Target market loses the whole widget equation. Software, OS, and hardware are no longer integrated. Ease of use is hampered. Design decisions are hampered by lowest common denominator effect, unless they release their own PCs, and then they gain no advantage.

    How about dual architecture support?
    Apple would have to support older G3s, new G3s and G4s, and new x86, not even mentioning the option/headache of AMD vs Intel. This is a headache for no real gain for itself at the questionable gain of performance for it's customers.

    How about legacy support (Classic)?
    More emulation! Unless the new hardware can emulate PowerPC without a performance loss, users will see sluggishness in all parts of the OS not optimized for the new hardware, especially the PPC native bits. This doesn't even mention emulation of the Classic OS under the new hardware... Emulating an older processor (PPC), which itself emulated an even older processor (68k) as well as emulating parts of the older OS (Classic)... what performance benefit, again?

    How about clones?
    If the only difference between a Mac x86 and a standard PC is the OS + bits of logic, how soon until someone reverse engineers and releases, ala Compaq-IBM, a clone and steal entirely the Apple market?

    How about hardware limitations?
    How about the fact that power consumption and form factor limits Apple's ability to create nifty designs? No more 1" laptops that run for 4 hours! No more fanless designs! *Note, Apple *could* use the Tualatin, but then get hobbled by high price and low performance.
    • I agree with much of what you posted, - this is not a flame of your post - but you made a couple of errors that are worth correcting:

      Diversity, while good, is expensive. Expect no software except through Cocoa or VirtualPC.

      Not so, Carbon apps would run just fine in a Mac OS X for Intel. Most of the applications running natively on Mac OS X are Carbon apps, not Cocoa apps; for example Microsoft Office for X is a Carbon app. Perhaps you are thinking of Classic which won't be part of Mac OS X for Intel?

      If Apple ports OS X to x86, is it advantageous to it's target market?

      Flat out: No. Target market loses the whole widget equation. Software, OS, and hardware are no longer integrated. Ease of use is hampered. Design decisions are hampered by lowest common denominator effect, unless they release their own PCs, and then they gain no advantage.

      Actually there is one enormous advantage for Apple of a Mac OS X for Intel that only runs on Apple built hardware. They can use fast, relatively cheap x86/x96 CPUs. Currently the PowerPC CPUs - with the greatest respect to Steve's marketing snow job - are at about 2 years behind Intel CPUs in terms of performance for a given price point. This is hurting Apple more than it cares to admit.

      My prediction is that 2-3 years from now, when most Mac software is Carbon or Cocoa based, Apple will announce the switch from Power PCs to Intel CPUs. They won't support Classic on these machines - emulating a 68k on Intel hardware would be too slow as you pointed out - but most Mac users won't care. Apple will not allow Mac OS X for Intel to run on anything other than Apple Intel-based Macs to prevent their hardware revenues being canibalized as they were when the licensed Mac OS to the clone makers.

      • Not so, Carbon apps would run just fine in a Mac OS X for Intel. Most of the applications running natively on Mac OS X are Carbon apps, not Cocoa apps; for example Microsoft Office for X is a Carbon app. Perhaps you are thinking of Classic which won't be part of Mac OS X for Intel?

        Carbon is an API, arguably one Apple could cleanly support on on OS X86. You're right, I confused Classic apps with Carbon apps. So theoretically Apple would provide the Carbon library for OS X and everyone would have to provide a 'fat' binary. So Carbon and Cocoa apps would indeed run on OS X86.

        Actually there is one enormous advantage for Apple of a Mac OS X for Intel that only runs on Apple built hardware. They can use fast, relatively cheap x86/x96 CPUs. Currently the PowerPC CPUs - with the greatest respect to Steve's marketing snow job - are at about 2 years behind Intel CPUs in terms of performance for a given price point. This is hurting Apple more than it cares to admit.

        That's only an advantage if x86 CPUs in a laptop running at 6W are faster than PPC CPUs... On the desktop, you may be right, but only if x86's *future* roadmap is brighter than PPC's *future* roadmap. I'm not in any position to argue that right now. Still, taking all four products into the equation, x86 is not an advantage.
  • For those who are looknig at Apple and syaing that it's hardware is expansive and that Apple gives away it's OS (low cost compared to Windows) you also need to point out that the number of softwares and flavor of hardwares on Apple are limited when it comes to x86.

    This is also a big factor in buying an Apple vs an x86. I don't have data on this but I think it is save to say that there are more softwares for Linux than for OS X.
  • Frankly put, why should us linux-using folks give a rats ass if the Mac does well or poorly? I don't see how Mac marketshare or 'cooperation' with the open-source crowd could be of any benefit whatsoever to Linux. To Apple, yes; to Linux, no.

    Apple isn't and will never be a competitor. Apple has zero chance of negatively affecting the the development or use of Linux. And Apple has nothing to offer Linux. If Apple goes belly-up tomorrow it would have no effect at all on the development of the kernel, KDE, Gnome, various apps, etc.

    I don't like Macs any more than I like Windows. In fact, I'd say I like the OS less because it's even more restrictive than Windows is (you have to buy very specific hardware, all approved by Apple, and most of it overly expensive). I see no justification or need for cooperation between Linux developers and Apple.

    Let them make their own way. Assuming they can.

    Max
    • Frankly put, why should us linux-using folks give a rats ass if the Mac does well or poorly? I don't see how Mac marketshare or 'cooperation' with the open-source crowd could be of any benefit whatsoever to Linux.


      Maybe because they're doing the best job of bringing Unix to the desktop? Most software written for Linux can easily be ported to OS X, so it gives you a larger potential market.


      you have to buy very specific hardware, all approved by Apple, and most of it overly expensive


      Aside the motherboard itself, this is completely false. Macs use USB and Firewire and support tons of third party equipment. Buy any USB mouse, plug it in, and it works immediately (yes, even the right button and scroll wheel). Ditto with just about any USB or Firewire CD burner or other drive.

    • I'm sick of people wasting bytes rehashing the same anti-mac rhetoric over and over. If this were a well thought out criticism, I'd welcome it, but this is just yet another kneejerk Linux geek shouting the same crap again. If you don't like Mac's, don't buy one. Period. I happen to use the more than enything else and find them to be very nimble and useful tools.
    • by 2nd Post! ( 213333 ) <gundbear@[ ]bell.net ['pac' in gap]> on Thursday February 21, 2002 @10:22PM (#3049183) Homepage
      Frankly put, why should us linux-using folks give a rats ass if the Mac does well or poorly? I don't see how Mac marketshare or 'cooperation' with the open-source crowd could be of any benefit whatsoever to Linux. To Apple, yes; to Linux, no. If the Mac [Apple] does well, it means more Unix base. It means more people not under the Windows hegemony. It means more users of Open Source (BSD, GPL, or otherwise) software. It means more devlopers of Open Source. It means more testing and debugging of Open Source software. It means more Open Source software: Darwin Streaming Server, Darwin (which is more than just BSD), and OpenPlay (which is a network interface). Apple Open Source [apple.com] Apple isn't and will never be a competitor. Apple has zero chance of negatively affecting the the development or use of Linux. And Apple has nothing to offer Linux. If Apple goes belly-up tomorrow it would have no effect at all on the development of the kernel, KDE, Gnome, various apps, etc. Everyone is a competitor; competitor for users, money, developers, and products. Every engineer at Netscape writing Mac code is an engineer not writing Linux code. Every engineer patching bugs or adding Altivec optimizations to Open Source code is an engineer not doing something similar for non Apple hardware. If Apple goes belly up, Linux loses developments of things like Firewire (which Apple helped to develop), 802.11b (which Apple arguably foisted on the world over Intel's slower wireless networking standard), USB (PCs are still sold with PS/2 ports and peripherals). Arguably, Apple was the impetus for the WIMP paradigm that GNOME and KDE follow, as well as TrueType and PostScript (though one is Apple's and one is Adobe's), there wouldn't be GIMP (without the original PhotoShop), or Killustrator (without Illustrator), or *any* of the Office suites without the first original Word. It's fair to say that the Apple of today is a different beast than the Apple of 20 years ago, but one could arguably extrapolate into the future what Apple may offer us (iDVD, iPhoto, iMovie, iPod, etc) and how they may change the computing landscape for everyone, including Linux users. I don't like Macs any more than I like Windows. In fact, I'd say I like the OS less because it's even more restrictive than Windows is (you have to buy very specific hardware, all approved by Apple, and most of it overly expensive). I see no justification or need for cooperation between Linux developers and Apple. Fair enough. Your opinion and your voice.
  • One of the interesting conclusions in the article, they say the increased liability of a speeding car amounts to about $0.37 in insurance cost, not the $150 they were charging. Why is it then that my insurance gets to jack my rates two hundred bucks a year when I get one lousy ticket?

    If you get caught speeding, your insurance agency knows that you speed, and you drive that car all the time. If a rental car is speeding, then the insurance agency knows that one of the multitude of people who drove that car speeds, but cannot expect the next X renters to speed.

  • Guys, any idea what position the DirecPC satellite is in? I've got a second hand direcpc PCI card, and a spare single LNB...

    Not that I'm up to coding anything close to the kernel code that would probably be necessary, but I'd at least like a stab at it.
    • Guys, any idea what position the DirecPC satellite is in?

      I believe they use two satellites. Galaxy-11 is at 91W (3 transponders - 1410, 1370, and 990 MHz), and Satmex-5 is at 116.8W (1 transponder - 1250 MHz).

      If you hack it (good luck), post back and let us all know ;)

  • OK. The nail is in the coffin for OSX on Intel. Let me sum up why: Why would Apple expose themselves to the headache of supporting the plethora of x86 systems only to gut their hardware sales. There is a reason why Macs work great---Apple controls the whole platform. This is the same reason that you have never seen an IRQ conflict on a Sun box.

    However, one idea that I haven't heard is to port Aqua and the developer package to FreeBSD.

    Aqua on FreeBSD is good for Apple because they can extend their developer base without giving away the crown jewels.

    Think about it. People who buy desktop Macintosh are going to buy desktop Macintosh. Aqua alone would be like selling an excellerated X server with the QT toolkit.

    If people were allowed to install FreeBSD and load on Aqua with support for a few video cards, that would create a developer base on Intel, that still has to buy a Mac for the integrated environment of OSX.

    FreeBSD/Aqua gives developers well, a completed GNUStep [gnustep.org]. But for iTunes, Final Cut Pro, iDVD, iMovie, iPhoto, firewire that works when you plug it in, sleek sexy machines that are attractive to most people, etc, etc, etc,you have to buy the Mac.

    I know that Apple can port this. OpenStep was ported to damn near everything, and Aqua isn't all that different. Plus the fact that FreeBSD is similar in many respects to OSX.

    Also giving FreeBSD users the development tools makes development candy for FreeBSD. Coupled with the fact that JKH works for Apple, we would see some cool apps, and some cool cross-pollination without diluting what makes Apple Apple.

    Maybe down the line Apple would find it worth their while to port to other *nixen, but Apple seems pretty bent on "There are five times as many BSD users as Linux users" sort of PR.

    I would probably reccommend that Apple keep Aqua/FreeBSD pretty much under their own control. (Like Sun with Solaris source) This would be neccesary to keep the platforms in sync. Before anyone flames me for not worshiping OpenSource, just ask yourselves how many people use the Trolltech produced version of QT versus FreeQT or whatever it is called.

    Note that I intentionally left out Linux and Net/OpenBSD because they all compete on the same hardware. Plus, I use FreeBSD, and I'm a poopy BSD bigot. Perhaps for the aformentioned reasons of "the Apple platform", this wouldn't be an issue. Apple could unify the UNIX desktop this way, but that might hurt them in the long run. Plus choice is good, right?


    -Peter

  • "Why is it then that my insurance gets to jack my rates two hundred bucks a year when I get one lousy ticket?"

    Because they're paying for the insurance on just the car. You're paying for the insurance on you as a driver as well as your car.

Heuristics are bug ridden by definition. If they didn't have bugs, then they'd be algorithms.

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