Evolution of the Apple Mouse
ard at p850ug1.demon.co.uk
Fri Oct 1 16:20:07 CDT 2010
> On 30 September 2010 20:21, Tony Duell <ard at p850ug1.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> >> But more generally, I think I am seeing an interesting trend which I
> >> find positive: the gradual removal of mechanical, moving parts from
> >> PCs (and Macs). Spinning HDDs are gradually being replaced by SSDs.
> > Hmm... I see this often as a negative trend in that I can fix the
> > mechanical bits (other than HDDs) and can't fix custom silicon. It may
> > be cheaper to replace, but when you have a deadline looming, the ability
> > ot get the machine workign again is very useful...
> Overall, I'd agree. For mass-market consumer kit, I think it might be
> good. Cheaper, faster computers are a good thing. Also, for the random
Playinghte devil's advocate for a moment, Cheaper -> less likely to be
econmical to repair, and thus more waste sent to landfill, fewer jobs for
Not _ncessarily_ a good thing.
> punter, *simpler* computers are a good thing.
Again, if oyu're not careful, you end up with a machine that makes simple
tasks trivial, but which can't be used for difficult tasks (or at least
makes htem a lot harder than they should be). Somehting that really
annoys me is the lack of a propper command language in many modern
window-based OSes. Computeras are good at doing the same thing over and
over agian, I should be able to tell them to do that.
> >> The last hold-out is the cooling fan and they are a real point of
> >> weakness, as they clog up with dust and cause the system to fail. I
> >> hope to see some improved, solid-state cooling mechanisms come along
> > How are these supposed to work (without violating the 2nd law)?
> Well, one idea I am surprised I have not seen exploited in PCs, that I
> have already seen in hifi, is large external passive heatsinks,
> outside the case. I presume they're connected by heatpipes or
> something. Gets the heat outside the box, in the open air, where the
> user can easily clean the fins with a duster, and where it will be
> carried away by open-air circulation.
External heatsinks on hi-fi amplifiers have been around from the tiem of
the first transitorised power amplifier :-).
The thing is, though, audio amplifiers work at fairly low frequencies. So
you can mount the output transistors, etc, directly on the heatsink, and
link them to the rest of the components (e.g. by fitting them near the
edge of the PCB amd mounting the PCB on an angle bracket fixed ot the
heatsink. AMy amplifiers are built that way.
But you can't do that with the much higher speed signals goign to a PC's
processor or graphics chip or whatever. The pesky speed of light gets in
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