Archive 7

Even being the richest man in the world doesn't stop you from getting a pie in the face.

"But godliness with contentment is great gain."
1 Timothy 6:6 (NIV).

Bloatsoft Still At It

Posted 16 February 2000.

In MacWorld's review of Macromedia's Dreamweaver 3 there was this telling paragraph:

Much text that ends up on Web pages begins in Microsoft Word, and at first glance Word's ability to save as HTML seems like a real time-saver. The trouble is that Word produces bloated HTML code, which looks great in Microsoft Internet Explorer for Windows but isn't very efficient. Dreamweaver's new Clean Up Word HTML command strips out the Microsoft-specific junk and produces cleaner, smaller Web pages.

Emphasis added. I know from personal experience that hand-editing an MS-produced web page resulted in several kilobytes being trimmed from its size.

Windows in the Bible

Posted 17 February 2000.

Then Noah decided to check and see if there was dry land. He fired up his laptop computer which seemed to take forever to boot up and finally, "After forty days, Noah opened the window he had made" Genesis 8:6 . He was very frustrated that it took him forty days to open the window, but he was only using a 286 with 640kB of RAM, so what could he realistically expect?

Like Noah, others were also disappointed by early versions of Windows. 1 Samuel 19:12 records that David was let down by a window and he fled and escaped. (Who among us has not been let down by Windows on occasions.)

You can almost hear excitement turn to disappointment in the young woman's voice when she exclaims "My lover is like a gazelle or a young stag. Look! There he stands behind our wall,..." then she realizes that he is distracted by his new Pentium system and she continues, dejected: "scrolling through the windows" Song of Solomon 2:9 slight paraphrase.

Early computer viruses were often referenced, for example, Jeremiah warns that "Death has climbed in through our windows..." Jeremiah 9:21. In later verses he attributes this to a woeful lack of prerelease testing. (Note: Some manuscripts omit these verses to avoid legal reprisals) Others had more success at using their systems, Elisha " Opened the east window" 2 Kings 13:17 and Jeremiah was renown throughout the land because "He makes large windows" Jeremiah 22:14 and was able to use the tile facility so that "the windows were placed high, in sets of three" 1 Kings 7:4 . Using the color feature he was able to make them "with cedar and decorated in red" 1 Kings 7:4 also.

However, most of the Old Testament windows users were not very productive because there was nothing in their windows until several thousand years later when Paul "shook the dust from his feet in protest and went to Iconium" Acts 13:51 where first century icons were created. But even Paul himself had difficulty with the new systems. He was later put in prison because one of the icons named Eucalyptus fell out of the window and was "picked up dead" Acts 20:9 which is not a good thing.

And finally, I would be remiss if I did not point out that the Bible also speaks to the future of Windows. How telling are the verses in Ecclesiastes 12:3-5 where the writer predicts: "the keepers of the house tremble, and the strong men stoop and those Working With Windows grow dim... Then man goes to his eternal home and mourners go about the streets." (Emphasis mine) Some scholars see this as predicting that Windows will be the death of us all, but the original text is unclear on this. Some think that the reference to "grow dim" is referring to mental capability, not physical demise, I think both translations have an element of truth!

Windows Reliabilility?

Posted 18 February2000.

From CNET news today:

Gates ... cited a recent study that showed that a Windows 95 system needed to be rebooted every two days and a Windows NT system every five days...

Don't know that I'd brag about that.

Windows' Extra Cost

Posted 20 February 2000.

From CNET:

Corporate users migrating to Microsoft's Windows 2000 may face thousands of dollars in extra licensing fees when making the switch, according to GartnerGroup. The client access licenses, which are not advertised, can range to as high as US$190 per computer.


The client access license, which isn't advertised, appears to exist to drive revenue, [GartnerGroup analyst Michael] Gartenberg said. "It's how Microsoft raises prices without raising prices," he said.


Left Hand, Right Hand, Ne'er The Twain Shall Meet

Posted 20 February 2000.

CNET - what a great source of goss.

Microsoft would be willing to open the source code for its Windows software to competitors if that was all it would take to settle the antitrust case filed by the Justice Department, chairman Bill Gates said.


Opening the source code would allow competitors to modify and sell competing versions of Windows, which run about 95 percent of the world's personal computers.


A Microsoft spokesman denied that Gates said the company would be willing to open its source code.

"He did not make any of the comments regarding source code that were attributed to him," said the spokesman, Greg Shaw.


"We stand by our story," said Matthew Winkler, editor in chief of Bloomberg News.

During the televised interview with Bloomberg News, Gates said Microsoft wouldn't open its source code to compete with other open-source products such as Sun Microsystems' Solaris software. Gates emphasized that Microsoft's "closed" code makes Windows more reliable.

Yeah, right. But back to it.

Later in the interview, Gates was asked what he believed would be a "reasonable" solution with the Justice Department.


After the on-camera portion of the interview was completed, Gates was asked whether the company would be willing to open the Windows source code in order to settle the case, and Gates said "yes." He then added, smiling, "if that's all it took."


Gates made his comments at a conference in San Francisco, where Microsoft released for sale its Windows 2000, a separate operating system for business computer systems.


IE for CE

Posted 25 February 2000.

The big gad guys are doing it again, but this time they can get away with it.

Microsoft will unveil the Pocket Internet Explorer, the first time the company has integrated its own browser into Windows CE.

Yet the software giant is unlikely to face the same antitrust repercussions that followed its decision to integrate its browser into its Windows 98 operating system. Unlike its dominant position in the desktop operating system market, Microsoft only holds one quarter of the market for handheld operating systems, according to market research firm International Data Corp.

Of course, there's also the question of why anyone would want to make a web browser for CE - ever tried actually using it?


1GHz: And The Winner Is...

Posted 7 March 2000.

AMD. From the Register:

A posting on AMD's own web page shows clearly that the company will launch its 1GHz microprocessor this month, thus prompting rival Chipzilla to drag its own gig processor screaming and shouting into the same time frame.

This reference in a FAQ at AMD's site clearly states it will bring out a 1GHz microprocessor this month, and just in case execs seek to stalinise the reference, here's the Q and here's the A. (Update Saturday morning: Sorry readers, the airbrush was applied to this FAQ just a few hours after we posted the link... )


"How did AMD reach 1GHz so much earlier than your projected introduction date?"


"AMD's process and manufacturing abilities, coupled with the AMD Athlon processor's advanced seventh-generation architecture has enabled AMD to reach this significant industry milestone, and successfully enable a leading manufacturer to bring 1GHz AMD Athlon systems to the marketplace in March."


AMD also makes it clear in a couple of Qs&As in the same location that it is going to price Athlons without reference to Intel's model...

Which means they are going to price them exactly as they want, and not care what Intel are doing. On Sunday (the day after removing the FAQ) AMD gave a pre-announcement that they would be announcing their 1GHz Athlon, and on Monday they actually announced it. Intel is expected to announce their own 1GHz Pentium on Wednesday.

The Cost of Speed

Posted 9 March 2000.

Dell's Dimension home PC with the Pentium III 1-GHz chip, 256MB of memory, a 30GB hard drive, DVD drive and CD-RW drive is priced at US$5,999.

This compares performance-wise with Apple's Macintosh with G4 500MHz chip, 256MB of memory, 27BG hard drive, DVD-RAM drive and ZIP drive priced at US$3499.

Overclocking 1000MHz

Posted 9 March 2000.

Some people are never satisfied.

So you've just purchased a new 1GHz CPU, and the first thing you'll try with it is overclocking?

... in order to make changes to the bus speed it is imperative to make sure the board supports it. In our test system, we were able to reach 1,100MHz without a problem by overclocking the bus to 110MHz. With our 100MHz overclocking epic, we gained ten frames per second in our Quake III benchmark, bringing the number to a hefty 117.5fps.


Following the Leader

Posted 11 March 2000.

Although these photos are not new (they were taken at a computer show last year), relooking at them makes me wonder anew: Why by a cheap copy when you could buy the original they are based on? Same colour, but much more elegant styling.

 Cylon vs Style