The chinchilla is fine, thanks for asking. Maybe another suppository and a trip to the vet and we'll have that little bugger making more gloves and collars before you know it.
I know you were reading:
And I know there's a noise going around in your head. What's that tap tap tapping on the inside of your brain kettle saying "So what?"
I'll tell you...so what.
Now, first, Mo, this isn't directed at you so don't get all offended. I know you like to share your mail with friends (you must have been in a pen pal club when you were a kid - correspond with natives in outer Slobovia, did you?) so I'm going to write this as though this is to your friends you yourself don't personally want to insult so you bring in an interventionist to shuck them of their bad habits. Some of this stuff is as disgusting as nose rocketing old lady's mailboxes but such is the nature of the human race and their depravities. We must.
Almost all consumer and business computer work these days use x86 processors (general purpose generationally evolved to support general purpose software) to operate general purpose software on general purpose operating systems like Microsoft Vista on general purpose computing platforms aka 'Desktop' aka 'Laptop'.
Almost all workstations use RISC processors (optimized architecture and special instruction sets optimized for speed and efficienct parallelism for high performance software) to operate specialized scientific and research software for applications requiring much more power than the x86 descendants of the first traffic light controllers can provide.
Thin clients use modified RISC processors for efficient speed and low cost (graphics and low-power computation with high-power processing and speed working at other end of network) to give look and feel immediacy to users connected to 'from single processor to supercomputer' resources connected by network CaaS (Computation as a Service) and by network SaaS (Software as a Service - later to be Service as a Service).
Desktops are going away. That's a resultant happy fact of life in a SaaS dominated world. I'm not here to take a slap at desktops, but I'll be glad to trade in a clunker I've been coerced by design into spending a couple thousand bucks every other year on and I have to PAY somebody to take the old one away because if I and all other suckers like me use them for boat anchors as they are best used, there won't be anymore calamari.
Tell me, what would you choose should you be given a choice between a high performance thin client for about what a medium size LCD display and keyboard cost today and a gorilla box that runs so hot I can make gorilla cheeze sandwiches on? Uhhhhhhhhh... what was the question again and would like to buy this micro-powered Edsel off my hands?
Now, tell me what would you choose should you be given a choice between a high performance touch-tablet client with a keyboard that can appear in thin air with blazing specialized skills for hours... days! and a plastic brick you cart around in a bag with a strap along with with another brick for power and another brick for typing And if there's no power around I hope and pray my typing skills have gotten better since the last time? Uhhhhh... when do I get a choice and would you mind taking this to the recycling center and here's twenty bucks. What? Twenty-five? Who the hell dreamed up this 'you are the computer' crap in the first place, people? Get wise!
"Desktop" users will abandon desktops to favor workstations. Why? Only logical. Because desktop people want power and speed and desktops are only marginally successful at that compared to RISC architectures. Additionally, "green" policy demands will see to it every desktop and laptop upgrade will end in extinction and branching to cheaper, less economically and less ecologically burdensome machines.
"Laptops" are going to give way to tablets of all kinds. That's a fact of life in a SaaS dominated world with electric paper and sensor platforms.
Laptops are destined to become touch-tablet thin clients with spatially projected keyboards and speciallized RISC processor loading (basically cell processors that emulate whatever processor the software requires - why get tied down?). Why? Only logical given the kind of software/hardware services projected. Power needs. Heat. Weight. Cost. Fragility. Insecurity. Appropriately targeted processor size and cost brings down all components on the board and reduces cost, size, power consumption and weight.
Why will you buy VIsta now knowing Microsoft has already told you they're going to do something really different next time? In two years. And you'll need another computer for that one as well. Sucker.
They're rationalizing the delay of Longhorn capabilites to convince the board they can draw out your current "this computer and XP are good enough for now" long enough to where you'll upgrade machine and software in 2007-2008 and AGAIN in 2009-2010. They argue they can use your consumer's rationale against you by making you wait for Longhorn (like you waited for Vista... You know. Say, don't you know the real reason for that High Anxiety bit with the doctor's chauffer getting the luggage with his 'I got it!...I got it!...I got it!...I don't got it.' bit. naahhhh. never mind. you don't believe in conspirings. bad things happen all by accident. yep. you da wise one.) to the point where you'll get in that 'gotta have' sweet spot between obsolescence peaks where you'll have to make the lunge... and then do it again just like the trained little mutt you are.
They're not pitching that? Really? Then, they're incompetent. Fire them. This is Microsoft we're talking about, folks... kings of the non-renewable non-machine.
You know who I mean; "Make a show and get some dough and don't say where the money go?" I would expect nothing less from their management and you think I'M crazy?
Why are they rationalizing that besides the fact it's a great business plan just as it was back in the day for Standard Oil?
Could it be they can't imagine telling the board the real reason why they won't field technology they've had on the shelf since 2004... November 2007, to be exact. And it's not because Lucovsky left. It's because of the reason Lucovsky left. I just wonder if the fabulous Mister M told his new bosses at Google how radioactive XMLhttpRequest really are (plural).
Desktops are designed for gamers and grandmas and everything possible in between... maximized generality; always a wasteful equation in any design.
Why? Allow me to educate you.
Laptops try hard to keep that 'gamers to grandmas' design quotient with an added design burden in weight reduction and power management. No wonder those little things cost more than my desktop monitor keyboard mouse and bundle of ridiculous marketing tchotchke craplets and manuals.
Workstations are for gamers to grand masters of wizardry. Not grandmas to gardeners.
Thin clients with remote and local storage are the only reasonable schema for the rest of us unless you might think you're going to get the urge to do a little emulated protein folding right after breakfast.
Nitwit. Why would you buy a desktop or laptop when a thin client can just as well have twenty supercomputers on the other end of that network? The damn thing can play the protein folding sequence and you can tweak it on a thin client for a couple hundred bucks AND YOU CAN GIVE THE THIN CLIENT AWAY AND BUY NINE MORE whenever you need another for what you were going to pay for that new nifty Popeye SKYblazer Spinocchio with Blutonium processor and bundled Pissta software.
Wait, you mean you actually have to PAY for the software TOO on that desktop? What are you? 'Challenged'? or just 'incorrigibly nitwitty'?
Your grandma would be just as happy and productive with a four ganged 80386 machine with the works and a chocolate shake for $300 less than the processor motherboard combo on her latest 'Vista capable' machine and she STILL needs to throw in a few more hundred in memory and software JUST to see the transparent Vista windows. Geez, where that poor old gal is headed she'll be lucky to get a window that's not viewing a parking garage and here you are sucking bucks out of her fixed income to buy another silicon ingot slicer.
OK. I'm done. Sorry the fat man stepped on your toesees and you got the wet bibby boohoos. I'm trying to save some of you guys who invest in equipment makers from taking a bath over the next few years as desktop owners realize they're being taken for a very expensive ride and get out at the next corner.
If you're looking for people to believe in for replacements to the current hardware paradigm, Sun and Wyse hold a reputation in government, academia and military that dwarfs future consumerism for value per unit manufacture in history. Looks to me like they're both making a comeback. Hmmmm I wonder why that's happening? Probably for the same reason Microsoft is having to make themselves look like a throwback.
1. For workstations - Sun (the network is the computer - the workstation is where you work the network - the client software is the worker)
2. For thin clients - Wyse (the thin client professionals from before the IBM PC)
The current batch of waste purveyors? Intel. AMD. Microsoft. Apple. Those are the biggies in 'replaceable product generation' for now. There are others but we haven't even poked a hole in the piñata that is SaaS yet. Just wait for CaaS and THEN tell me how cool and groovy your $2000+ Moe Fine desktop with Larry Fine storage and Curly Joe software... yeah... heh heh... that's like...uhhh, cool.
Woops chinchilla sneezed. Time for the vitamins.