Posts tagged “powerpc”.

On the pace of innovation

July 16th, 2010

Marco Arment sees that the progress of computing hardware is slowing down. So, too, is software innovation:

I use desktop computers for many hours every day. They are my profession, my hobby, and my leisure. But the pace of their software innovation that’s relevant to my everyday use has dramatically slowed. It’s not a bad thing. On the contrary, it’s great that I don’t need to constantly update and upgrade everything to maintain a stable, full-featured computing environment. This is what mature, stable products and industries are like. They work, and they’re built on decades of progress, but modern advances are infrequent and incremental.

In other words, there’s not much whiz bang happening in the personal computer world these days. It seemed, back in the PowerPC era, that we zipped from 233 Mhz to 3 Ghz in a matter of years. Since then, the only way to get more speed (as Arment mentions) is by adding an SSD drive, or maybe more RAM.

The personal computer has plateaued, argues Arment, so the focus – and, maybe most importantly, the excitement – switches to mobile computers. Not what are these devices, but what can these devices do.

This is where Apple shines. “Forget the details,” they tell us, “here’s how it makes your life better.”

Quote of the week: anything newer?

March 5th, 2010

“The question is not ‘why do you want something that old?’ but rather: Why would I want anything newer? This computer serves my purposes perfectly well. It would be nice to be able to run Mac OS X Leopard and run all the latest software, but for somebody like me whose heaviest task is editing a photo taken with a point-and-shoot camera, I’ve found that this computer is quite powerful enough.”

- David Kendal, my podcasting buddy, with a good pre-emptive piece that nicely accompanies my rant from the other day.