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ShadowCell



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 6059
Location: California

PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i preferred the feeling of existential despair while writing philosophy papers. made it all feel more genuine.
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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 10730
Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sun Feb 09, 2014 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's why I could only minor in philosophy. I needed to get out of the existential despair of finding out that there is no rational answer to the brain in a vat, that all knowledge, even the most logical, is at some level based on an irrational assumption that some proposition is true without evidence.

Give me paranoid schizophrenia any day.
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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 10730
Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm having a (not really) difficult time deciding what to do. It's time to upgrade my phone (starting to act up, battery is annoying) and my laptop (from 2008, battery is toast, etc). Right now they're both Apple, but I'm pretty ambivalent about the brand. I love my laptop. I like the benefits of having my laptop and phone both be Apple, but I'm not a big fan of iphones. If I switch phones, I lose some of the benefits that make me love my laptop, and make it harder to justify the price. Then I could get a new laptop for easily half the price... plus a phone I actually liked... so really it's just that I've been so impressed with how well my 2008 MacBook Pro has aged that I have a hard time switching to a PC that I'm fairly certain I won't like as much...

Anyway, in the absence of a clear direction I do nothing and just grow to hate my phone more and still love my laptop.
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Heretical Rants



Joined: 21 Jul 2009
Posts: 5344
Location: No.

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 9:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

2008 is old for an iComputer?
I still prefer my Lenovo x61t from 2006 over most newer laptops -- the ones under $1000, anyway.

Processors have mostly maxed out on the GHz, hard drives all have room to spare for almost everything short of massive-scale data collection,
DDR4 RAM is going to come out soon, but other than system admins, who really cares?

The current paradigm in computer hardware (that is, cramming as many transistors as possible into a 2d array) is reaching maturity - Moore's law is about to give out - and right now upgrades are mostly pointless for consumer-end devices until the next big thing is developed.

At this point, you only really need to replace stuff when it breaks, unless you're just buying a status symbol.

Well, okay, the touchscreen slate tablet-things of today are significantly nicer than the ones they had just a couple of years ago, but laptop/desktop computers are effectively at a standstill.
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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm glad you have a computer you like.
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Heretical Rants



Joined: 21 Jul 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

well, I'd rather have one of these instead of the x61, or one of these *(carbon fiber, haha) instead of my chromebook, but I can't justify the expense, even when almost all of my work is done on these devices

*actually, ditch the touchscreen

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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My price tracking software says the ThinkPad is at the lowest price it's ever been at... it launched at $1599, got up to $1850 in early January, and is now creeping down... you'd be crazy not to buy it!
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Heretical Rants



Joined: 21 Jul 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

very soon the "ultrabook" class of computers are all going to be running Haswell processors and DDR4 RAM and as such will have marginally better battery life than the ThinkPad X1

how do you sell computers when slightly newer ones with no real functional improvement, but with marginally better battery life, are coming out? Lower the price by a marginal amount! Huzzah!

Actually, they might also be able to ditch the cooling fans. Haswell low-power processors: Intel's desperate attempt at snuffing out ARM by making their chips do things ARM chips already do, but on the x86 architecture!

woooooooo
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WheelsOfConfusion



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 12208
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Speaking of Chromebooks and old laptops, an interesting comparison.
I'm typing this on a 2007-era Asus W3J. It was an acceptable gaming machine back in the day and priced accordingly around $1,200. It has a Core 2 Duo, a Radeon Mobility X1600, a gig of ram (upgradeable to 2x that), 100GB harddrive, and about 2 hours of batter life.
It's dual-booting Ubuntu 12.04 and Wihdows XP Pro, although I really haven't even booted into XP for a few years now.

For about $200 there's an Acer C720 Chromebook with a better CPU, an equal-or-better Intel GPU, twice the ram, and about 8 hours of battery life. For ~$100 the 16GB SSD could be upgraded to 128GB. With a simple utility the ChromeOS can be swapped out for Ubuntu (or just about any other Linux distro). It even has hardware virtualization support, unlike mine!
So for $300 I could buy a new laptop that outperforms my old one that cost 4x as much back in the day.


Anyway, came in to say that the house shook a little bit for no apparent reason last night. It felt like a large plane flying low overhead or something, but there was no noise other than the shaking.
Turns out it was an earthquake a few counties over.
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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 10730
Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heretical Rants wrote:
very soon the "ultrabook" class of computers are all going to be running Haswell processors and DDR4 RAM and as such will have marginally better battery life than the ThinkPad X1

You can get a Haswell-equipped X-series ThinkPad right now for only 10% more! ... and a 12-inch screen. This is why I have a hard time buying a new computer. By the time I pick out what I want I'm looking at machines worth as much as my car... but arguably I use them more than my car, too.
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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
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Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WheelsOfConfusion wrote:
For about $200 there's an Acer C720 Chromebook with a better CPU, an equal-or-better Intel GPU, twice the ram, and about 8 hours of battery life. For ~$100 the 16GB SSD could be upgraded to 128GB. With a simple utility the ChromeOS can be swapped out for Ubuntu (or just about any other Linux distro). It even has hardware virtualization support, unlike mine!
So for $300 I could buy a new laptop that outperforms my old one that cost 4x as much back in the day.

I had this same experience with my TV. I had an old CRT die on me, and went out on a limb to buy a flatscreen for $1200 because I got it for no interest (as long as I paid it off within 36 months)... now I can get that same TV for about $200, and "smart" TVs for $400. Although I can't imagine paying $1200 for a TV now.


Quote:
Anyway, came in to say that the house shook a little bit for no apparent reason last night. It felt like a large plane flying low overhead or something, but there was no noise other than the shaking.
Turns out it was an earthquake a few counties over.

Wow, that's kinda cool. I've only experienced one earthquake, and while it was a little worrying at the time, it was kind of a neat experience.
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WheelsOfConfusion



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
Posts: 12208
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The thing with cheaper TVs out today is that they've raced to the bottom in terms of image quality. Sure, they're not as terrible as a $200 set was seven years ago, but they're still not as good as a $1,000 set, and the ones that ARE as good as those are getting harder to find. Our "old" 32" 720p set has a better picture than the 32" 1080p we bought this year, especially in terms of contrast.
Sadly, the same is true for computer monitors a lot of the time.
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Dogen



Joined: 10 Jul 2006
Posts: 10730
Location: Bellingham, WA

PostPosted: Sun Feb 16, 2014 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I meant I found my actual TV, by model number, on clearance for $200. I really like that TV, although I can't watch Amazon Prime or Hulu on it (my blu-ray only supports Netflix and Vudu). Still, that's easily fixed with a Roku (if I ever watched TV on the TV instead of on my laptop). I had the CRT it replaced for like 10 years, and got it second hand, so I don't really foresee any new TVs in my near future.

New laptop, on the other hand... I'm just biding my time. Once I graduate and start working (or, as it were, getting paid for the work I already do Evil or Very Mad ), maybe.
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Heretical Rants



Joined: 21 Jul 2009
Posts: 5344
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 16, 2014 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WheelsOfConfusion wrote:
Speaking of Chromebooks and old laptops, an interesting comparison.
I'm typing this on a 2007-era Asus W3J. It was an acceptable gaming machine back in the day and priced accordingly around $1,200. It has a Core 2 Duo, a Radeon Mobility X1600, a gig of ram (upgradeable to 2x that), 100GB harddrive, and about 2 hours of batter life.
It's dual-booting Ubuntu 12.04 and Wihdows XP Pro, although I really haven't even booted into XP for a few years now.

For about $200 there's an Acer C720 Chromebook with a better CPU, an equal-or-better Intel GPU, twice the ram, and about 8 hours of battery life. For ~$100 the 16GB SSD could be upgraded to 128GB. With a simple utility the ChromeOS can be swapped out for Ubuntu (or just about any other Linux distro). It even has hardware virtualization support, unlike mine!
So for $300 I could buy a new laptop that outperforms my old one that cost 4x as much back in the day.



my laptop proper was made sometime in either late 2006 or early 2007, and it still surpasses the 2013 chromebook on basically everything except battery life

although admittedly some of that is only because I've spent maybe ~$100 on updating/fixing various parts over the years

Dogen wrote:

{Haswell if not DDR4 for 10% more linky}


but it isn't as nice, overall, as far as what I would want out of the device is concerned
c'mon
carbon fiber


it doesn't affect my workflow in the slightest whether the battery can last 15 hours vs 10 or whatever -- The only thing my Chromebook's long battery life has done for me is make it harder for me to gauge that I've just been derping around on the internet for too long. For serious work I plug in.



What I'm saying is that while the new machines are slightly spiffier, there is basically no real benefit to be had from upgrading to a computer newer than 2007ish
My laptop computer barely has enough RAM and processing power to run three IDEs, two VMs, and an emulator simultaneously or paint on a 12000x12000 pixel canvas, oh noes! Time to upgrade to something that can handle working at a resolution of 14000x14000 pixels while playing la macarena in the background instead!


The one thing that has improved substantially since 2007, if you don't have a slot for a graphics card, is integrated graphics, which is mostly just nice if you want more frivolous eye-candy, or play DOTA professionally, or something
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Michael



Joined: 09 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 16, 2014 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a two year old thinkpad (with slightly over 3 year old specs, due to our IT department making long term "deals" with suppliers for a certain model) and I love it. It helps that I upgraded to 8gb ram and fedora allows fun things like placing your temporary files directory in memory. However, if I had a year old one I'd probably be able to do OpenCL simulations on the integrated GPU. One the things I love best about the thinkpad - and the first thing I check with laptops - is the keyboard, which has all the keys in the right place (this thing \ goes over the return key) and no media button crap.

Programming gives you weird requirements Smile
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