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Yeah, I know.. I stole the name Brain Droppings from George Carlin. Get off my back.
I just wanted a place where I could share my mind with the world. My thoughts come out in short little spurts. Little brain droplets if you will.
So, enjoy, but don't get mad. Please. It's only my semi-informed opinions. I'm not trying to sell anything, trying to demean anyone or anything like that. I'm just a guy with a loud mouth and no spelling skills. Please don't feel the need to seek me out to reply. If you are sentient enough to form your own responses to my opinions and thoughts, hey, you've gone further than the average Micro*#t employee. Knowledge may be power, but power is useless without direction. Direction can only be achieved by thinking for yourself. Have at it.
Also, I know this page is severely out of date. Deal with it. More will come as I have the time and inspiration.
First Brain Dropping: June 9, 1998.
Why AMD is going to be the face to watch in your PC
Advanced MicroDevices has just released the first in what will be an all out assault on Intel chips. Don't worry about the antitrust suit against Intel. Not worth even glancing at. Instead look at superior thinking. The RISC86 archetexture was only the beginning. With the release of the K6-2 with 3D Now! technology, AMD will take over the most important market: gamers and CAD/graphics designers. I mean, this technology is really awesome. If you don't know how a RISC processor works, you might not understand why I am so excited about this stuff. RISC processors take tasks that x86 processors labor over one by one and assign one part of the chip to work on it, while the rest of the chip works on other instructions. In theory, if you have a well-programmed operating system and programs, you could get something like 2-4 times as much work done as a Pentium II chip running at the same 'speed.'
With the 3D Now!, 100Mhz Bus and clock speeds of 300Mhz, added to it an awesome floating point process and a 32K Level One Cache (20K PRE-instruction cache... helps a bunch), a 512K Level Two Cache and 21 instructions designed to enhance even MMX sets and much more to come, the processor does one thing that the Pentium can't: Talk to the graphics accelerator. Look at it like a bottleneck. You've got all this processor power, but it gets condensed and slowed down by aging technology that exists in the output stage of any x86 processor. This means a 286 clear up to a Pentium II (Pentium Pro processors are an exception if I have my facts correct, but Pro's are no longer made, cost too much, and were huge hot running monsters.) has this problem. But the new K6 processors (the K6-3 will be out in about five months or so, and the K7 will follow sometime in 1999.) are built to kick out 3D instructions fast; 4 times as fast, in fact. A 300Mhz PII produces Floating Point calcualations nessisary for 3D at about .3 gigaflops per cycle, where as the 300Mhz K6-2 puts out 1.2 gigaflops per cycle (both maximum figures from the AMD website).
Now, for a lot of things this won't make a bit of difference, and a 300 Mhz PII will still slightly outrun the K6 in MS Office. But not everyone limits thier PC usage to word processing. This is why Motorola's G3 (Macintosh) chip outruns the PII at graphics but not MS Office apps. The G3 is another RISC-type processor.*
But the days of text are fading rapidly. VRML, 3D rendering, MPEG2 and MPEG-Layer3, DVD, 3D audio are what will dominate the world in the coming years... heck, the coming months! Intel has forgotten about one vital thing: Customers don't listen to you, they listen to each other. It's the curse of Generation X. We've grown tired of buying just because it looks good. No, we have to have proof positive.
So how do you get that proof? Look at it this way. Why do auto makers, parts dealers and oil companies want so badly to win at NASCAR or INDY? Because people trust what wins races. The same thing is true in the world of computers, only the races are won in the world of GAMING! Yes, sound off all of you Quake II, Starcraft, Jedi Knight, and Command and Conquer fanatics out there! You're changing the way we look at computers. Mac can't win because you ignore them. And Intel can't win because they've ignored you. Cyrix won't win because they tried to make it cheap for you. And you know better. AMD listened to you, created forums, even took over one of the biggest on-line tournaments in history. They are in the midst of delivering your redemption, and it has only begun. The K6-3 will be an even better processor, handling even more FPU (Floating Point) stuff. The K7... well... If I don't miss my guess, the K7 will be the next big thing. Right now the K6 is a small uprising. The K7 is slated to be so incrediby powerful that Intel can't even hope to match it in performance/dollar value. Speaking of, that is the other reason why Intel is going to lose us with a brain. Because we know a value when we see one. And we know a leader when we see one.
Down the road, look for DirectX 6.0 to have extentions exclusive to 3DNow!, and best of all; Silicon Graphics is already working on making the Open GL (which, by the way is software upgradable) not only complient with, but led by, the 3DNow! technology.
Cheaper, Faster, Better? Too good to be true? Don't ask me. Don't even ask AMD. Talk to the person driving that souped up 3D rendered INDY car... Because if you can tear him away, I think you'll see why this is the real world, and the real goods. Go AMD, Go!
*actually, if there was a 300Mhz G3 it would outrun the PII in everything. See the next Brain Dropping for why that won't matter a bit in this world, tho (I have a hint for you: It's called most of us don't have $6000 to throw into a computer).
Irony for the day: This article was produced using a Cyrix processor... hmmm...
Why Apple's G3 chip won't make any big impact.
June 10, 1998
You may want to read this review first, then push the Back button on your browser to come back here.
So the G3 chip performs better than a Pentium II... yeah, and? I just blasted Intel for being overpriced. But Intel looks like buying from Goodwill compared to the $$$$ hungry G3 chip. Dollar for dollar, you could get a dual-processor, SCSI, DVD, VoodooII 3D, all the bells and happy whistles, blow the doors of anyone on the block system. For the same price as this G3 computer Apple claims is so great. Maybe I've blown things a little out of proportion, but not by much.
I'm saying all of this in a response to two articles testing out the G3 against a PII 300. The G3, as tested, costs over $4,100, while a super-souped up Cybermax PII 333 with comparable specs costs about $2,2001 Sure, you couldn't take the Cybermax on the plane with you, especially with that 19" monitor. However, I'd be willing to bet my second system with a cost of $2,9002 would outperform this $4,100 G3 system in all tests, and I haven't even started with the K6-2, -3 or K7 systems. I'd love to see one of those pitted against the almighty G3 in graphics tests. As far as comparable cost, there won't be. You'd have to start adding things like 21" monitors, multiple Hard Drives, Recordable CD Rom drives, a JAZ drive, and hey, maybe a DAT drive to those to even start coming close to Apple's least expensive G3 systems. It's all about value. People don't follow advertising, they follow thier pocketbook.
As I said in the last Brain Dropping, AMD is looking good because they are teaming good, smart, solid technology with reasonable, approachable prices. Apple has not only failed to do this, they have also made another big mistake in dropping the Rhapsody project. I mean, if you're gonna alienate the average buyer, why not do it with pinache? Why not go out with a bang? No, Apple is following Microsoft's lead, claiming that backwards compatability is important. Why? If you can afford to buy a $6000 computer, you can probably afford to buy new software for it. Mac OS 'X' is the final straw. I can't stand it any more. Here's the thing: If you are making a new operating system for a new chip; make it NEW! This was the problem with Windows95. It has great potential, and was supposedly made to harness the power of a Pentium, but it didn't. Instead it added a few new toys and a new GUI (Graphical User Interface). Oooh. Pretty. Actually, I find I can get more work done with Windows 95 because of the concept of contextual right-click menus. Among other things like the fact that the multitasking actually works. Now, in all farness I have not tried the G3 to see if it crashes as much as the PPC or Agent86 processors (man, that's annoying) at odd times, but I have completely lost faith in Macintosh's ability to make a quality OS for any processor. How is X going to be any better? Granted, Windows98 is no formidable opponent (you're still better off just using Windows95. Trust us. We've been beta testing Windows98 for over a year now. Nothing's different except it crashes all the time).
Another huge issue is software. There are something like 20 times
as much software for Windows systems than for Mac systems. I won't
cry if they continue shooting themselves in the foot, as long as they
don't splash any blood on the public, which is exactly what they are
1The CyberMax system was a desktop, while the G3 was a laptop. However, this laptop had claimed to be able to outperform a desktop system running at 333Mhz. The Cybermax system (Workstation, code I605) had a PII-333, 64MB SDRAM, a 3D card with 8MB SGRAM, a 11.5GB U-ATA HD, 32X CD ROM, and a 19" monitor (oh, yeah).
2 The second CyberMax system was also a desktop, a (PowerMax H3, code I611) PII-400 with 128MB 100Mhz SDRAM, AGP 3D card with 8MB RDRAM, 11.5GB U-ATA HD, DVD ROM, a 56KFlex faxmodem, and 19" monitor.
Modern Music Making Me Mad
June 20, 1998
What is up with music today? I'm a member of Phi
Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity, a music fraternity dedicated to
promoting the highest standards of music performance. So I feel it is
my duty to speak out. Modern music is really going downhill.
Originality is substituted for sad remakes and angry lyrics. Ever
since the day "Smells Like Teen Spirit" hit the streets, I knew that
there was trouble. I also thought that if Nirvana could make it, then
surely my band
could. So we got together and made some original music that was
equally as talentless and weird... and got nowhere. It seems its not
who you are, but who you know in the music industry. Or is it? Is it
just that people don't care about quality any more?
I used to buy the line that kids want someone to relate to. It's true to an extent. But we're not all kids and we aren't all angry. Sure, I get mad and music helps me cope. Sure, I pop in my Alice In Chains, crank Angry Chair and feel the anger rise and fall within me. Then I pop in some Spin Doctors and feel a lot better. Why? Because music is the window to our soul. I'll pop Beethoven's 7th (Adagio movement) and tears will roll down my face. Expressing emotion is important. But I think a lot of music nowadays is more about being angry at the world, instead of focusing on personal anger. One band tells us that the world is full of stupid people. Maybe so, but that isn't why I'm on my Angry Chair. I'm on my Angry Chair because of Little Miss Can't Be Wrong. Not because some granola eating tea drinking goth punk tells me I should be getting high and going to a pro-choice rally for feminist ultra liberals wearing all black and smelling 'natural.' No, I'm mad because of the same stuff that people get mad about all the time. Not because I'm too much of a 20-something-generation-Xer lazy punk who's still living on his parent's couch and watching MTV all day. Not because I'm some irresponsible nobody who lets Pearl Jam tell me all about politics.
Okay, so that is established, and I've run it into the ground and offended yet more people. My point is this about music: It needs to be a reflection of our emotion, not dictate it. Cases in point:
-Collective Soul: why has this
band been so successful? They don't curse, they don't moan about how
much the world sucks. The World They Know is honest and full of
people who really are okay, even if they don't think they are.
-Ska music: I'm not terribly into this stuff, but it has made me notice some things. The music makes kids feel good. Isn't that what being a kid is all about? Having fun? Have fun while you can, I say! We worry so much about making these kids into our future care givers, doctors, lawyers and source of income when we get old and grey that we forget that they are kids and need to have fun. Let 'em! (responsibly, of course.)
-the Big Swing Comeback: As I just said before, we seek the positive naturally. We want to feel good. And lately we've found that modern music has failed us. So we are going back to what worked for people who were really depressed. In the 40s this nation was at war. We needed something to lift our spirits. And music was the answer. More power to 'em. Go Daddy-O.
I'll stop it, with a few quotes, the first from Collective
"Has our conscience shown?
Has the sweet breeze blown?
Has all the kindness gone?
Hope still lingers on...
Are we listening?
Hymns of offering.
Have we eyes to see?
That love is gathering?" -from The World I Know
The second is from Grammatrain:
"I wish that I could say I am a perfect man.
I wish sometimes that I would not be who I am.
One day I decided I would think on this.
Not knowing if faith and pain could co-exist.
Could I ever on my own concieve?
If someone I did not know, but I need?
I must be made to be at peace,
and communion 'cause somehow I am full aware that I've fallen.
I find through every ounce of pain I feel,
that my mind cannot deny that God is real...
Nothing in this world has satisfied,
my soul's hunger for a deeper life.
The weight of my misdeeds were crushing, blinding me.
I still live with pain inside but now I can see
that I find through every ounce of pain I feel,
that my mind cannot deny that God is real." -from Pain.
Music can be honest and still speak to our soul. Be real out
there. Don't be afraid to be you, but don't be someone else just
because you hear it on the radio.
Return Home (for those of you who haven't mastered the magic "back" button).
Don't worry, there's more coming soon!!! Calm down! Want my opinion on something? Wanna give me some comments? Drop an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Flamers and Spammers will not be tolerated. I do have root level access, and can trace you if you choose to break the law. And yes, I can and will do all I can to get all Flamers and Spammers off the Internet. We don't need 'em. But I know anyone intellegent enough to have read this far might have something intellegent to say. And if there is one thing I have learned in 22 years it is that the only way to learn is to shut up and listen. So let me have it! Just be nice, please. Courtesy begets Courtesy -DJ