Content-Creation – The Third Option

The last argument of those who cling to the ideal of the Wintel desktop is that gaming office documents content-creation requires Wintel. They deny the current assault by */Linux on ARM or x86/amd64 as incapable of replacing Wintel in any manner. That’s clearly wrong on many fronts.
“Patrick Moorhead, principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, pegged 2014 as the year when such devices become reality. "In 2014 there will be broad adoption of new processor technologies from Intel and AMD, for that matter from ARM," said Moorhead of his prediction that chip makers will have silicon by then that not only sips power at tablet-appropriate rates but has the horsepower necessary for content creation. "This is going to happen. And that means there won’t be a robust, premium 10-in. tablet-only market."1
The modern ARM processors2 have greater throughput than the processors Intel was shipping just a few years ago and they were good enough then. Certainly Intel’s latest stuff can do the job but at much greater cost, weight and power-consumption.

Do we need an x86 desktop/notebook to do content-creation? No, if the real world is any judge. Facebook, YouTube and other sites are crammed with stuff generated by millions of smart phones. All kinds of real people are generating still images, audio and video using nothing more than a smart phone3. I know. My “little woman” is one who does. She has a good camera but leaves it at home these days. Would a smart phone be the first choice of a professional? No. Is every user of a PC a professional? Not by a long shot. Only a small percentage of PC-users are professionals. Professionals may use smart phones as necessary.4

Technically, one does not need to choose any particular client machine for content-generation if there is a network-connection to some powerful machine. It is trivial to control the behaviour of some server from an ARMed computer. That’s what thin clients do all the time. That’s what web-browsers do. There are kinds of content-creation that won’t work well that way but even Hollywood makes motion pictures using similar technology, selecting clips with a client machine and sending stuff to a server-farm for rendering. You can see people editing videos with their smart phones.5 Typing and cameras and microphones work with smart phones and tablets very well thanks to the Linux core which knows about such devices. We have had networked operating systems for decades. It’s the third option for content-generation and many millions don’t even care about the technology. It just works.

So, you can use any kind of personal computer for any kind of task if you do it the right way. Wintel certainly is no longer necessary if it ever was. */Linux works for millions. Why not you? There never really was a good reason to exclude other technologies. That was M$’s idea to make them rich6, not you. No doubt the trolls will shout that “Wintel works so why not use it?” but then we would have to look at re-re-reboots, malware, price,… There are plenty of reasons to exclude Wintel from IT.

References

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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22 Responses to Content-Creation – The Third Option

  1. oiaohm says:

    Cisco AnyConnect VPN client is Dr Loser not supported by Australian government servers.

    The catch here is it not deprecated Cisco hardware in businesses. Its deprecated stuff the Australian government end.

    –However, this will only affect organisations that are rolling out Windows 8 whilst using the deprecated Cisco hardware and software.–

    Australian government mandated software. So every business in Australia doing direct electronic submissions is effected even if they own zero Cisco hardware.

    Dr Loser nice right. I still remember when Windows 7 came out E-tax did not run on Vista or 7 yet. Lets say Australian government it will be at least 12 months before it will be usable.

    Lets put it this way Australia government sometimes needs brick bats send in there direction to update.

    To be truthful why Cisco IPSec was used over MS IPSec is that MS IPSec was and is buggy and did not support Linux servers(Australian Tax department one of the largest Linux clusters in Australia). It all starts with MS not providing a quality product and cross platform support. Resulting with us in the hell hole.

    Dr Loser this is why I hate closed source protocols. In Australia we have had closed source protocol after closed source protocol to use from the government to get stuff done. Then being forced to run old versions of programs. No longer supported programs just to interface.

    Cisco saying no more support does not help you when government is saying we not not upgrading.

  2. Dr Loser says:

    @Oiaohm:

    I believe your Cisco VPN problem is addressed here.

    Cisco announced end of support for the IPSec based VPN client some time ago.

    I’m partially with you on your implicit complaint that Cisco are forever gouging the customer with new hardware and new software, and it’s quite possible that Microsoft is colluding in this. Alternatively it’s quite possible that Microsoft doesn’t see the point in supporting something that is, at this point, dead in the water except for cheapskates and pirates.

    However, this will only affect organisations that are rolling out Windows 8 whilst using the deprecated Cisco hardware and software. Since half of them probably haven’t even moved to 7 yet, I fail to see the problem.

    Bricking, indeed.

  3. bw says:

    ““7″ didn’t take care of any of my complaints”

    I can believe that! Of course your complaints are major league compared to most other people, so it is no wonder. Meanwhile the rest of us just manage to scrape along.

  4. bw wrote, “One of these days, Windows 9 will come out and take care of all the complaints just like Windows 7 did.”

    “7” didn’t take care of any of my complaints. If you include “the ribbon”, “7” brought its own new complaints but the malware and re-re-reboots are still there.

  5. bw says:

    Oh, I never said that Windows 8 is at the office. Far from it. I said that I put Windows 8 on two of my personal computers at home. Windows 7 is what is used in business and it may very well be that most companies will elect to stay with Windows 7 just as they once did with XP, skipping Vista, which I guess was sort of Windows 6. Maybe even numbers are bad luck for business.

    I really wonder if Microsoft cares. If a company buys a new computer and “downgrades” to Windows 7 or tries to use Windows 8 with it, they get paid anyway. For them, that is the important thing. One of these days, Windows 9 will come out and take care of all the complaints just like Windows 7 did.

  6. oiaohm says:

    bw funny here in Australia windows 8 for business usage to Australia government is bricked.

    One of the required bits of software is cisco vpn. This still does not work under windows 8. It works under windows 7 all the way back to Windows 2000. It works also on all Linux systems and all OS X systems.

    So Microsoft Australia you ring up and ask to perform downgrade rights it is fairly much not a question why.

    It might work in your country or you are that small you don’t have a internal accountant who is directly placing the company BAS to the TAX office.

    So bw it will be a fair while before I have to install windows 8 on anything. If it has Windows 8 it will be downgraded. Just for consistency between terminals.

  7. bw, living in the past, wrote some stuff and “I don’t have any re-re-reboots as you seem to think. Nor do I have any real problem with malware.”

    My little woman does the banking and lots of stuff with web-applications provided by several institutions. No problems there. I do her updates remotely by SSH and she rarely has to reboot except for kernel upgrades. Tomorrow you will have 57 vulnerabilities to patch and they are real problems with malware.

    “Five of the 12 patches are rated critical, so they’re designed to patch holes that could allow someone to execute malicious code on an unprotected PC. Two of the critical patches are aimed at all versions of Internet Explorer from 6 through 10. That means all current versions of Windows with IE installed are at risk, including Windows 8 and Windows RT.” see CNET

    More than half those holes “require restart”.

  8. bw says:

    “I don’t know many who have a huge set of applications”

    I don’t have very much myself, but take my personal financial management stuff for example. I use Quicken for my banking and I have to have a Windows computer at hand to maintain continuity with that as I have for almost 20 years now. I would never change that just to save $100 on a new computer, even if it were possible.

    Also, I buy the new copy of TurboTax each year and it finds my last years copy and imports a whole raft of stuff and keeps me consistent with AMT from prior years and makes sure that things I had last year are treated again this year. This year I had to copy the directory from the computer I used last year to make this happen. Again, I wouldn’t want to give up the continuity for $100 or even a lot more.

    I have a lot of dependencies on doing things a certain way as well and I don’t think that I would be very happy having to switch to other applications. I installed Windows 8 on my two main systems, a desktop and this laptop, and just having different ways to launch things has been somewhat nerve wracking. And that’s with the same applications being run in the end.

    I don’t have any re-re-reboots as you seem to think. Nor do I have any real problem with malware. Windows 8 seems to have a built-in antivirus and the old Norton had to be removed before I could install. I think that Windows has moved beyond those old days.

  9. bw wrote, “The cost differential that exists, if any, is so minor that there is no compelling reason for a computer purchaser to consider changing. The majority of the buyers of computers simply have no good reason to go to the effort to change and risk what they have now.”

    HA! I don’t know many who have a huge set of applications beyond a web-browser and many are using FLOSS browsers these days. I have seen many people use OpenOffice.org and not realize it wasn’t that other office suite.

    Compelling reasons:

    • price, in a $300 computer no one wants to pay $100 for a free OS,
    • re-re-reboots, a lot of them,
    • slowing down, which no one likes and
    • the damned malware.

    There are many more compelling reasons but I have been writing for hours and I am tired…

  10. ram says:

    In the English speaking world, many (perhaps all) of the big retail chains require ‘push money’ to get products on the shelf. Often large ‘retail outlets’ make more money from ‘incentives’ i.e. ‘push money’ than they do from any actual sales to consumers.

    This, of course, explains many of the anomalies you see, especially in North America, in big ‘shopping’ centres. The correlation between what you see in large glitzy stores and what actually sells is quite poor.

    If you want to see what is selling, visit some small busy shops in (often ethnic) neighborhoods. Privately owned (as opposed to shareholder bankster owned) don’t get ‘push money’ (with a few exceptions).

  11. bw says:

    Perhaps Wal-Mart is not the most likely place to buy a desktop computer. I would not myself think of doing that. However, that does not invalidate the idea that people have an intrinsic understanding of the difference between computer and tablet and phone. There is no doubt that some people do not need a computer at all and the services on a phone or a tablet for sure will suffice to meet their needs. Maybe that causes Dell or HP or even Apple to lose a sale of a computer, but, no worry, there will always be a very large market for computers in general and I am certain that a very significant piece of that market will accrue to Microsoft in the foreseeable future.

    Consider that Linux, from all the touting, is essentially the same thing in the layman’s eye as Windows. It is just an odd sort of thing that has notable deficiencies in not being able to use a person’s existing application software. The cost differential that exists, if any, is so minor that there is no compelling reason for a computer purchaser to consider changing. The majority of the buyers of computers simply have no good reason to go to the effort to change and risk what they have now.

  12. bw wrote, “go to a store such as Best Buy or Office Depot or even Wal-Mart and they will see computers, including desktop and laptop versions, tablets, and even smart phones as they would expect and these devices are easily distinguished from one another by the buying public.”

    One of my nearby Wal-marts does not display any “desktop” systems. They are in boxes under the counter. They aren’t selling fast enough to justify the shelf-space.

  13. bw says:

    “This shows a fundamental flaw in bw’s position”

    I say that your comment shows a fundament lack of adherence to the context of the issue. I said that there were no Linux computers on the shelves and that generated a dispute, but the counter argument was that there were tablets being offered for sale in obscure place with Android installed and keyboards that could be attached as options.

    A computer in the context of this thread is plainly what a person would expect to see in a store that sold computers. It is not a difficult concept.

    Anyone interested can go to a store such as Best Buy or Office Depot or even Wal-Mart and they will see computers, including desktop and laptop versions, tablets, and even smart phones as they would expect and these devices are easily distinguished from one another by the buying public. If you want to discuss or predict the future direction of the business of selling such devices, you have to accept the common wisdom that defines them.

    No one going into a store like that to buy a computer is going to come out holding a tablet or smart phone or vice-versa.

  14. bw wrote, “Mainstream machines that normal people call “computers”. Things that have monitors, hard drives, wireless or wired network connections, DVD drives, and lots of memory. You know, a computer.”

    This shows a fundamental flaw in bw’s position. A computer can be a computer without any of those things although network connections and lots of memory are huge pluses. Computers come in many kinds. I have used both analogue and digital computers. I have used mainframes and single-chip computers. Many of them had no monitors. I have often used monitor+keyboard to set up a computer and then disconnected those. The computer still ran, usually on the network. Many PCs have BIOS options to allow running without a monitor or keyboard. I was surprised that some PCs would not boot without a video-card. I discovered that when I built some without. I have rarely seen a PC with a DVD drive. Lately, many PCs are made without any optical drive. Earlier many were made with CD-only.

    The fundamental flaw is that bw’s concept of a computer is based on the outward appearance and not the functionality. Basically a digital computer needs some storage, a logic-unit (usually a CPU chip), and some I/O (Input/Output). There is no particular need for any particular kind of I/O nor a particular amount of storage needed. My old Ohio Scientific Superboard II has just a few kilobytes of RAM and a few more or ROM.

    I think many associate “computer” with Wintel in a similar manner. The OS is not an essential part of a computer but a useful addition. I have used computers with standalone programmes or crude monitors and fixed-location programmes.

  15. bw says:

    “Conventional computer what define”

    Mainstream machines that normal people call “computers”. Things that have monitors, hard drives, wireless or wired network connections, DVD drives, and lots of memory. You know, a computer.

    If you want to insist that some screwball device that you have to order from some Asian or European outlet via the internet is “in stores” or “on shelves” then be my guest. You are only kidding yourself, which is probably very easy for you to do since you appear to have had so much practice.

    You are acting out of desperation. You are praying for the day that Linux computers become popular but that day never seems to come. So you call Android “Linux” and call phones and tablets “computers” and say “What a big boy am I!” like a geeky Little Jack Horner.

  16. oiaohm says:

    bw please read what you said.

    –You talk of Android/Linux, but there are no Android or Linux computers on the shelves.–

    You are being troll not reading it shows insult was justified.

    I did clearly state what I was proving.

    There are Android computers on shelves.

    So please learn to read I was not talking about generic GNU/Linux machines.

    There are Android on shelves. I was not attempting to prove existence of Generic Linux computers words did not mean I had to.

    http://www.giadatech.com/index.php?act=product

    Sorry giada tech is on sale in places. There are ASUS laptops out there with embedded android.

    http://www.asus.com/Tablet_Mobile/Eee_Pad_Transformer_TF101/ Some pure android some android and windows in one. The 18inch is just the latest offering that I think is strangely wrong. ASUS products in store you do need to look a little closer at you could have been walking past ASUS Windows/Android hybrids just due to your lack of attention you missed the fact there were.

    http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2012/05/another-tiny-computer-vias-49-apc-offers-android-hdmi-video-out/ Yes android ATX compatible motherboard from VIA.

    There are android computers out there. Normally somewhere between thin-client and general desktop class is there usage.

    Conventional computer what define. If it having an ATX motherboard using an ATX power supply than the VIA one passes with flying colours.

    I have no issue calling a person like you dw name who cannot read. I have mentioned the existence of some of this hardware to your before.

    Android desktop style does exist. Just I don’t think you would walk in the thin-client direction in a store to find them or notice the hybrids or the android setup boxes or….. Basically the huge list of items that sit in the area that was the C64 computer class a long time ago.

    The C64 class of machine is back bw. Small not that powerful but powerful enough to let people do what they want.

    Remember there is more than PC style desktop computers. You did not state that as a limitation. a C64 desktop is still one of the conventional old desktop computers. Thin terminals are also officially conventional class desktop computers.

  17. bw says:

    “bw really you are a troll as normal.”

    Do you find yourself alone fairly often? Calling people names because you want to take offense at what was posted is not being very sociable.

    On top of which you post links to devices that are not available anywhere at the moment, which is a poor way to try to discredit my statement that these things are not found in stores. You do not even seem to recognize the distinction between a tablet and a conventional computer.

    You make a poor attempt to show the existence of Linux computers by pointing to something that is a) not really Linux and b) not really a computer. Yet you call me names.

  18. oiaohm says:

    bw really you are a troll as normal.

    –You talk of Android/Linux, but there are no Android or Linux computers on the shelves.–

    http://www.informationweek.com/byte/personal-tech/tablets/hybrid-notebooktablet-android-style-from/240062575
    http://www.pcworld.com/article/2023289/giada-announces-compact-arm-based-android-desktop.html
    http://www.geek.com/articles/mobile/149-laptop-runs-android-ics-looks-like-a-macbook-air-2012067/

    There are Android computers on shelves. Some you will miss because they are hybrids.

    http://www.webpronews.com/ces-2013-asus-announces-hybrid-windows-8-pcandroid-tablet-2013-01

    Some very very warped hybrids. Yep Arm Android, x86 Windows 8 all in one tablet unit that has a 18 inches screen.

    bw I am not sure a 18 inch screen should be a tablet.

  19. bw says:

    Maybe all or some of that will happen someday, but for today, you seem to see that there is nothing immediately available besides Windows computers although you refer to them being in the minority. You talk of Android/Linux, but there are no Android or Linux computers on the shelves. There are phones that use Android, of course, and occasionally you will see a tablet alternative to the iPad offered with Android, but never a computer and nothing at all that says Linux. I know that Android is a derivative of Linux made by Google, but it is advertised as Android with the little robot man as a logo.

    I expect that, if there was a real problem with Windows and if there were a real solution in the form of Linux, there would be a real alternative to Windows computers and some smart guy would put the peanut butter with the chocolate and clean up selling them. I didn’t see that at the place I was at this morning. They don’t sell Apple computers or iPads and they only had Windows computers and laptop computers on their displays. Maybe a dozen or 15 all taken together. They had zero tablets although they occasionally have Samsung or Motorola versions on an end cap display. Not today though. That spot was taken up by a Dish network satellite TV display.

    They do have iPods for sale and the ATT cell booth had dozens of phones, including iPhone and various Android models, I am sure.

  20. bw wrote, “If all these problems with Windows actually existed and people were being handicapped in any significant way in doing their daily chores, there would likely be a mass migration away from Windows computers and what you predict would happen.”

    Migrate to what? What else is on Walmart’s shelves? Only a couple of years ago there was nothing but M$’s OS on retail shelves here. Now M$ has a minority of the offerings and people are lining up to buy Android/Linux. Soon people will have the choice of GNU/Linux as well.

    There are problems with that other OS: price, malware, restrictive EULAs, slowing down, … Ordinary users have told me that and they loved GNU/Linux because it had none of those real problems. The reason people love embedded systems is that they are reliable and trouble-free. People don’t want trouble in their lives. When they see GNU/Linux turns a typical PC into something as reliable as an embedded system, they will love it. So will OEMs and retailers because they will have happy customers. M$’s FUD is hollow and almost everyone knows it these days.

  21. Richard Chapman says:

    “…but there is still a long history of the here and now.”

    The history of the here and now… More twisted logic from a Microsoft faithful follower.

    It’s not 1995 anymore bw. And the here and now, is, well, here and now, not yesterday.

    Microsoft trolls just love to bring back the past when they feel challenged by the present. It’s another way of saying Microsoft has no future.

  22. bw says:

    There are lots of things that could be, but there is still a long history of the here and now. If all these problems with Windows actually existed and people were being handicapped in any significant way in doing their daily chores, there would likely be a mass migration away from Windows computers and what you predict would happen. But that is just not the way things are. If a person does not actually feel any pain sufficient to make them get up and go to the store and look for a better way, they are not going to do it, they are simply going to keep what they have.

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