[Rant]Kids these days are useless!
LennyLen

While just coming home, I noticed a kid with his bike standing on the sidewalk looking at it. He did this for the whole minute or so it took me to get to him, and when I did he asked me if I could help him.

I asked what the problem was, and he told me that his chain was broken, and he couldn't fix it. The chain wasn't broken, it had just come off, and it took me all of two seconds to get it back on again.

Don't they teach kids anything these days?!?! And even if they don't teach things like that, how hard is it to figure out for yourself how to put a bike chain back on?

Right... rant over.

alethiophile

[rant]
How clueless can adults get? I was helping my mom with her computer the other day, and she said that she couldn't open a Word file on her Mac, but all I had to do was explicitly open TextEdit and use that! Sheesh!
[/rant]

;D

Vanneto

Funny! ;D Well, the newer generations aren't getting any brighter. Look at it this way, he knows now. ;)

imaxcs

Not all kids are interested in mechanics.

Richard Phipps

So he got you to fix the chain for nothing and get oil and dirt on your hands?

Smart kid!

jhuuskon

There's no fun to be had in things that don't involve filth and lubricants.

Frank Griffin

Sounds like he pulled one over one yea hehe.

My three year old is just stubborn some times and will sit there until you come help her. She also gets frustrated if she failed to fix it and will sit there and cry.

Maybe the kid tried and had trouble doing it and was just pissed at the time and you walked up at this point?

LennyLen
Quote:

So he got you to fix the chain for nothing and get oil and dirt on your hands?

He already had it all over his hands, shirt, and face (exactly what he had been doing, I don't know).

Since I rode a bike with no front derailleur for about two years, I used to have to replace my chain three or four times a day. I got oil on just the tips of my forefinger and thumb, which was gone after rubbing them on the grass (rather than my shirt and face).

The kid was damned polite though - "Please sir, can you help me?" and "Thank you so very much sir." So at least his parents have taught him something, just not elementary mechanics.

Quote:

Not all kids are interested in mechanics.

I'm not interested in mechanics either, nor have I ever been. That never stopped me figuring out how mechanical things worked though. Especially when faced with the other option of walking.

Quote:

How clueless can adults get? I was helping my mom with her computer the other day, and she said that she couldn't open a Word file on her Mac, but all I had to do was explicitly open TextEdit and use that! Sheesh!

She uses a Mac, she already fails. :P

Quote:

Maybe the kid tried and had trouble doing it and was just pissed at the time and you walked up at this point?

Actually, he sounded like he was on the verge of tears. Since it was 8.47 (the local school starts at 8.45), he was already late for school because of it.

Dustin Dettmer
LennyLen said:

She uses a Mac, she already fails. :P

Everyone in this town uses a Mac. I'm seriously considering moving to a new one...

LennyLen

Actually, I have no problems with Macs. I used to use the ones at the newspaper offices when I had DTP projects to do. Hassling Mac users is just so fun though. :D

Gr4|\|f

There are two types of Mac users that some people cannot seem to distinguish:

GUI users are type number one. They look for a computer that does what they tell it to do, in an easy, user friendly manner. They never intend to actually create anything computer-related with it. Here are some examples:
- I like his one. It's pretty.
- Hey! This one works with my iPod!

Type two: UNIX users. UNIX users purchase Apple hardware because it is fast, is Intel based, and is either portable or customizable (iMac and Mac Mini excepted). They purchase Apple software because of it's UNIX base system, which makes it easily dual-boot-able, and gives it powerful security. Here are some examples:
- Hey, look! A hardware-supported OS that doesn't suck!
- It has a Perl interpreter built in! I'm in love!

LennyLen
Quote:

There are two types of Mac users that some people cannot seem to distinguish:

Then there's the third type, which is what I was. QuarkXPress ran far better on Macs at the time (possibly it still does), so that was what I used them for.

Richard Phipps

So GUI = normal, and UNIX = geeky?

Gr4|\|f

Quark? You use a WYSIWYG environment? That puts you in the GUI users category. Write your own code, please.

Dennis
Quote:

Don't they teach kids anything these days?!?

Apparently they don't teach them not to talk to strangers anymore. Even worse, they don't teach them to not talk to grown-up men who are coming home from buying breakfast at 8:47 am. :-X

CGamesPlay

Type 3: People who don't buy Mac hardware because it's f-expensive and then install Mac OS because it's pretty ;D

FrankyR

Gr4|\|f, as far as I know Quark is used a lot for professional design work like magazine layouts, etc. I'm not sure how you would go about writing that in code or why anyone would want to.

LennyLen
Quote:

Quark? You use a WYSIWYG environment? That puts you in the GUI users category.

While the better WYSIWYG environment of the Mac was a boon (ca. 2001), the Windows version was such a memory hog that my PC at the time couldn't even run it without major slow downs.

Quote:

Write your own code, please.

Even if I'd had the ability (I'm only a hobby programmer), my time was taken up writing articles and doing the odd bit of graphic design for people.

Quote:

Even worse, they don't teach them to not talk to grown-up men who are coming home from work at 8:47 am.

Actually, I was coming home from buying breakfast. ;)

Goalie Ca

The problem with kids is that they don't get outside and run around anymore. They're very good with computers because that is all they ever do.

Evert
Quote:

UNIX users purchase Apple hardware because it is fast, is Intel based, and is either portable or customizable (iMac and Mac Mini excepted). They purchase Apple software because of it's UNIX base system, which makes it easily dual-boot-able, and gives it powerful security.

Funny. I got my Mac (which isn't Intel based) because I wanted a laptop that (1) I could hook up to a beamer and expect it to work without trouble (Windows was still quite bad at the time, Linux was worse. I'm sure both have improved since then), (2) was reasonably small and light for travelling, (3) had a decent battery life. I didn't really think 6 hours is that great, but it seemed to be the best I could get, and (4) wasn't too expensive.
Especially (2) and (4) are conflicting demands, but the iBook was the best overall compromise. The fact that it runs a UNIX system is just an added bonus that I'm very happy about.

As for dual booting, my PC can do that just fine.

As for kids on bikes, they need to learn to watch over their shoulder before pulling to the left. Really.
As an aside, I wouldn't have a clue as to how to get my chain back in place if it came off, but then again, it's in a closed case that I can't open without equipment as well.

alethiophile
Quote:

The problem with kids is that they don't get outside and run around anymore. They're very good with computers because that is all they ever do.

A) Is this a problem? Elaborate, please.
B) "...that is all they ever do." Don't use absolutes. This is an indefensible generalization in two ways, namely: 1. that all kids are like this to any degree; and 2. that any kids are like this to a complete degree. It kills your credibility as a debater.

jhuuskon
Quote:

As an aside, I wouldn't have a clue as to how to get my chain back in place if it came off

Assuming a bike with multiple sprockets for gears, put the fallen chain on top of the sprocket and spin the pedals forwards. If the chain has fallen off the rear sprockets, put it on the front sprocket first, then do the same for the rear but spin the pedals backwards. Works for single sprocket bikes too if the chain is worn enough.

Dennis
Quote:

Actually, I was coming home from buying breakfast. ;)

Fixed by the Ministry Of Truth.:P

LennyLen
Quote:

A) Is this a problem? Elaborate, please.

Lack of physical exercise can have obvious detrimental effects on one's health. Physical exercise also helps get your brain going.

edit:

Quote:

Fixed by the Ministry Of Truth.

You're more right than you know. Truth be told, I was coming home from attempting to buy breakfast. Silly me walked down to the supermarket without my wallet.

Thomas Fjellstrom

Evert, 6 hours? Fuck me, my laptop gets 3 at best.

Quote:

B) "...that is all they ever do." Don't use absolutes. This is an indefensible generalization in two ways, namely: 1. that all kids are like this to any degree; and 2. that any kids are like this to a complete degree. It kills your credibility as a debater.

Since when was everything a debate? Yeesh.

amber

I think you've missed the bigger problem: Someone is wrong on the Internet!

OICW
Quote:

(4) wasn't too expensive.

Maybe in your country, but here the cheapest MacBook begins on 1000Euro, while my HP laptop was for 660Euro.

As for the OP - yes the kids today are quite useless, I in their age was curious about how things work and was experimenting. And definately this chain problem wouldn't stop me.

Goalie Ca
Quote:

A) Is this a problem? Elaborate, please.
B) "...that is all they ever do." Don't use absolutes. This is an indefensible generalization in two ways, namely: 1. that all kids are like this to any degree; and 2. that any kids are like this to a complete degree. It kills your credibility as a debater.

Well with regards to
1) Kids are getting fatter, lazier, more sheltered, and less rounded. The best way to grow up is to run around and play and explore.
2) ??? didn't realize i was debating.

FrankyR

I think the message here is that the kid didn't know how to put the chain back on and now (hopefully) he does. He's now learned a valuable skill.

bamccaig

Notice that your parents' generation said there was a problem with your generation as well. Unfortunately, things change. I think kids today would have just as much fun outside as we did if we showed them how to (and they do, just not as often as we did -- I can remember a lot of afternoons though where I had nothing to do because I wasn't allowed to play video games and spent much of the day bored -- sometimes outside gets boring too)... Maybe the problem is that parents today expect these things to be instinctual when in reality they were taught to us by our parents (and older cousins, etc.).

Computers have a lot of offer so it only makes sense that children (and adults) would want to get as much of it as possible. That's not to say that there aren't benefits to physical activity as well. Balance is best, but that's never as easy as it sounds.

nonnus29
Quote:

There's no fun to be had in things that don't involve filth and lubricants.

Ahhh... So that's what women are good for.

alethiophile

If a person makes a statement on a.cc, and anyone who doesn't completely agree reads it, then it will be a debate at best, and a flame war at worst. That's why I like it. ;D

nonnus29

That's complete crap alethiophile, and you can take your stupid brainf*ck sig with your anti MS avatar and just leave! We don't like your kind here!

Brainf*ck is for sissies, real hackers code in Malbolge:

.http://esolangs.org/wiki/Malbolge

alethiophile

If I thought you meant that, I'd flame you.

Any language whose code has to be generated by a program running in another language is all right by me. ;D

Thomas Fjellstrom

I'm sorry, Whitespace rules all.

alethiophile

Whitespace is in fact a reasonable language, it just implements everything as combinations of space, tab, and \n. That is, it has just as many functions as C or Perl or any other language meant for actual work, it just calls these in a weird way. To really qualify, a language has to have very few, or very limited or annoying, instructions.

Samuel Henderson

I always had the worst luck with bicycles when I was younger. It was more because I was hard on them rather than bad luck I suppose... Twigs and sticks and vines were always getting jammed in the derailer messing up the gears and screwing up the brakes.

Thomas Fjellstrom

Now print off a whitespace program and try and figure it out ;)

nonnus29

Yep, whitespace is tame.

This is insane:

.http://www.99-bottles-of-beer.net/language-malbolge-995.html

Edit: print this off an try to understand it :P

Matthew Leverton

Try to print perl off and understand it. :-/

Thomas Fjellstrom
Quote:

Try to print perl off and understand it. :-/

When I didnt have a computer to use everyday, I'd code on paper, and then type it up later. I dunno, maybe I'm just a genius.

nonnus29

When I was young computers were expensive so I wrote programs on paper, and executed them on paper.

8-)

:P

Dustin Dettmer
Gr4 said:

There are two types of Mac users ...

Around here it's more like a mini cult. They'll usually say, "I like it cause it's designed right and it just works." It's just a premise though, they can't tell you whats designed right or what works better.

The funny thing is something like 50% of their keyboards break. And don't even get me started on the ipods.

Dennis

Coding on paper is for sissies, real hackers do it in their heads.

HardTranceFan
Quote:

I asked what the problem was, and he told me that his chain was broken, and he couldn't fix it.

Maybe he didn't have a laptop on him and so couldn't google the fix?

Evert
Quote:

Assuming a bike with multiple sprockets for gears, put the fallen chain on top of the sprocket and spin the pedals forwards. If the chain has fallen off the rear sprockets, put it on the front sprocket first, then do the same for the rear but spin the pedals backwards. Works for single sprocket bikes too if the chain is worn enough.

Thanks.
I should mention, I'm quite sure that, had the need ever arisen and assuming I'd be able to open the case and get at the chain, I'd have been able to figure it out. :)

Quote:

Evert, 6 hours? Fuck me, my laptop gets 3 at best.

As I said, I didn't think it was that great, but it's the best I could get. Better than the new generation of Mac laptops anyway. It's probably less new though, I've had the machine (and more importantly, the battery) for almost two years.
Six hours includes power management actions like dimming the screen and shutting down Firefox.

Timorg
Goalie Ca said:

Kids are getting fatter, lazier, more sheltered, and less rounded.

Less rounded and more round :D

Thomas Fjellstrom
Quote:

As I said, I didn't think it was that great, but it's the best I could get. Better than the new generation of Mac laptops anyway. It's probably less new though, I've had the machine (and more importantly, the battery) for almost two years.
Six hours includes power management actions like dimming the screen and shutting down Firefox.

Yeah, I haven't fully tested just how long it'll last when running nothing but the desktop, on battery power. But I tested it a little.. the battery monitor itself estimates 3 hours max, at 500mhz, and doing absolutely nothing but updating the battery monitor ;) I think at full bore, I'd get 1 hour, maybe 1.5.

GullRaDriel
Quote:

Type two: UNIX users. UNIX users purchase Apple hardware because it is fast, is Intel based, cost an eye,and is either portable or customizable when using tons of little proggy (iMac and Mac Mini excepted). They purchase Apple software because of it's UNIX base system and because it makes them shining in public, which makes it easily dual-boot-able after spending an hour of customization, and gives it powerful security while they don't know how to use it correctly and use root everwhere. Here are some examples:
- Hey, look! A hardware-supported OS that doesn't suck! Even if I can not play my games I am happy !
- It has a Perl interpreter built in! I'm in love!
- I have the feeling to suck Steve Jobs when buying and Apple ! Yay !

Fixed ;D

Thomas Harte
Quote:

Fixed

If by 'fixed' you mean "pumped full of straw man arguments" then I agree.

GullRaDriel

yeah, it was for making fun about Mac user :-)

There just one fact on which you could not do anything else than agree with me:

For the price of a Mac laptop you have some better hardware in a PC laptop. I just talk about the hardware, not the OS or other consideration.

ixilom

Kids are just evil. Those who say otherwise are just in denial.

Thomas Harte
Quote:

For the price of a Mac laptop you have some better hardware in a PC laptop. I just talk about the hardware, not the OS or other consideration.

My main argument would be that taking hardware in abstraction is so artificial as to make this observation irrelevant, regardless of its truth.

I'd further or alternatively argue that you would be unable to find a PC laptop that offered better performance outside of the same price range, where performance is deemed to be the overall abilities of the hardware as perceived by the user. So that includes stuff like longevity and effect on overall performance of drivers. I appreciate that is bordering on software territory, but I'm trying to make the point that it means nothing to have a series of more functional discrete components if, due to the overall configuration of the machine, some components impede on the functionality of others. That necessarily means talking something about software. I'm taking your comment in the spirit of "let's not discuss OS X versus Vista", i.e. discounting the user experience of software that is meant to be (roughly) invariant across different hardware.

So, e.g. being able to tick a box saying you bought a machine with bluetooth (which I've picked arbitrarily to make a point about tick box comparisons, not necessarily because it's a useful feature for many people) and also say that you found a faster processor doesn't mean much if the bluetooth driver causes your computer to take an extra 20 seconds to boot and slows your whole system down.

My feeling about the whole debate, moving completely away from your comments, is that people want computers for tasks and only care about numbers as far as they affect the ability to perform those tasks. So it's false to abstract hardware from software in terms of what you're getting for your money. Improved questions would be "which type of machine is cheaper if I want to do basic word processing?", "which type of machine is cheaper if I want to edit video?" and the most realistic questions would be of the form "where is the best balance of cost to functionality if I want to <perform task X>?"

I think that it's too easy for those of us that are computer literate and care about fringe activities that put us in direct contact with the hardware, such as programming, to forget about the vast quantities of professionals who have to equate time with money and want to be able to do tasks with maximum efficiency, not just say that they've been able to do them at all, and the vast array of casual users who want to be able to perform certain tasks and don't really care about how the computer works beyond that.

I wouldn't be surprised if vanilla PC is the better buy for many people and Apple PCs are the better buy for many others.

GullRaDriel

Meh. I must say that I agree with you Thomas. >:(

m c

solution: Save the money from the crapple notebook to get a really good PC notebook, and then re-image the hard drive with a MacOSX install.

Hope that it had no trojans, log in and change the password username etc, and have fun. This is assuming that you downloaded the MacOSX install image on bittorrent, if you actually know someone who bought a mac then just copy their hdd.

Evert
Quote:

For the price of a Mac laptop you have some better hardware in a PC laptop.

That's funny, because when I got my Mac laptop there wasn't a PC laptop that offered the same in terms of weight, size, battery life and performance as my Mac - I decided what I wanted and went with the cheapest option, which happened to be the Mac.

Sure, I could have gotten a PC laptop with a faster processor and a better graphics card. It'd have weighed a ton, wouldn't have fit snugly in my backpack and would have had a battery life of an hour or two if I was lucky.
Maybe we have a different opinion of what "better hardware" means for a laptop, but from where I'm sitting, I could get a Mac or a PC laptop with crappy hardware and dodgy operating system support.

jhuuskon
Quote:

Sure, I could have gotten a PC laptop with a faster processor and a better graphics card. It'd have weighed a ton, wouldn't have fit snugly in my backpack and would have had a battery life of an hour or two if I was lucky.

Ever heard of the Thinkpad X series? :)

Granted, they aren't cheap but...

Evert
Quote:

Ever heard of the Thinkpad X series?

That was pretty much the alternative, yes.
As you say, they're not cheap, though they seem to be cheaper now than they were a few years ago (and lighter as well, with better battery life). As far as I recall, the low-end models were on par with my iBook in terms of specs and about 1.5-2 times as expensive when I looked into it.

That, and all the software I use on a dayly basis runs more naturally in a UNIX environment, which is a pain to set up under Windows, which can be solved by installing Linux on it, which tends (or tended) to have problems with wireless and beamers, which would have meant dual booting for presentations, which would have meant a lot of hassle and annoyance.

Thomas Harte
Quote:

That's funny, because when I got my Mac laptop there wasn't a PC laptop that offered the same in terms of weight, size, battery life and performance as my Mac

And yet that idiot Jobs still thinks we'd rather have an expensive thin-but-large laptop rather than a smaller replacement for the old 12" iBooks and PowerBooks, which would probably be about half the price judging by history.

Matthew Leverton
Quote:

That's funny, because when I got my Mac laptop there wasn't a PC laptop that offered the same in terms of weight, size, battery life and performance as my Mac - I decided what I wanted and went with the cheapest option, which happened to be the Mac.

I've always liked how Mac buyers respond to the "Mac is expensive" truth. They take one of Apple's few offerings that are mass produced and try to compare it to an equivalent PC of a single vendor.

It's very well possible that a $1200 MacBook is better priced than a $1200 PC in terms of hardware. (Although I'm pretty sure one could find a better PC deal if he looked hard enough.)

But what if you want to buy a $600 laptop? How do you buy a brand new $600 Apple laptop? You cannot ... because they are more expensive than a PC!

jhuuskon
Quote:

And yet that idiot Jobs still thinks we'd rather have an expensive thin-but-large laptop rather than a smaller replacement for the old 12" iBooks and PowerBooks, which would probably be about half the price judging by history.

Not to mention that the cheapest X61's are very much competitive in specs (apart from the obvious differences in display specs and faster processor, SATA HD and 3x longer warranty) but somehow I suspect the Air wouldn't withstand even close to the abuse an X-series can take in. For someone as clumsy as I am, it is a significant sales point. :P

Thomas Harte
Quote:

But what if you want to buy a $600 laptop? How do you buy a brand new $600 Apple laptop? You cannot ... because they are more expensive than a PC!

I think it's because most charges of "Apple computers cost too much" on the internet aren't the simple statement they present themselves to be, but are designed and targeted as a conflation of allegations that Apple gouge on prices and that Apple buyers are idiots as a result. So most replies respond to those topics even though they aren't necessarily in the slightest bit active in the mind of the person who makes the allegation.

I think it's impossible to argue with the proposition that the cheapest new PC is cheaper than the cheapest new Mac, since it's just clearly true. If I were asked to advise someone who only had £X00 and/or set the goal of minimum expenditure as an absolute primary objective then I think Eee PC or something like that would be the way forwards. With an external monitor and keyboard if they have the money. It seems to do all the basic tasks (Office + Internet) very well, and I figure anybody that has specific other software they want to run needs to make a decision based on that software, not on cost.

OICW
Quote:

But what if you want to buy a $600 laptop? How do you buy a brand new $600 Apple laptop? You cannot ... because they are more expensive than a PC!

That's exactly what I was asking too.

alethiophile

I prefer PC hardware because it's cheaper and it's a computer ;D, and then I can install Linux, kill the Windows partition during the install, and have a great OS on an actual machine.

Matthew Leverton
Quote:

If I were asked to advise someone who only had £X00 and/or set the goal of minimum expenditure as an absolute primary objective then I think Eee PC or something like that would be the way forwards.

I actually just got an Eee PC to keep me occupied during some of my more boring lectures (review coming soon!), and I would have to heartily disagree. If someone were looking for a laptop to use as a portable workstation and did not have much money, I'd recommend a cheap $500 laptop.

While I like the Eee PC for what it is, if I were to make a weekend or business trip, I'd get quite frustrated if I had to use it for extended periods of time as a workstation.

alethiophile

Why the heck Eee PC? Weird name. Anyway, it looks really annoying to me.

Matthew Leverton

I have a nice 14" laptop, but I don't like carrying it around. It barely even fits on the desks at university; with the Eee PC, I can have it open along with a pencil and (paper) notebook. In fact, those are the only things I carry with me.

kikabo
Quote:

Kids these days are useless!

Amateur!, if he can't can't put his chain on while riding, within one crank rotation, while signaling, braking, turning and avoiding the parked car who suddenly opened the driver door without looking and avoiding the car on your shoulder who just decided that it's the perfect safe moment to overtake (which is always if there is a bike in front) then there is no hope - next time tell him to go home and get a mac.

Frank Griffin

Will it rain today?

alethiophile

57 = 39. 8-)

Evert
Quote:

I've always liked how Mac buyers respond to the "Mac is expensive" truth. They take one of Apple's few offerings that are mass produced and try to compare it to an equivalent PC of a single vendor.

I'm well aware of the irony that my iBook was actually the cheapest laptop that fit my needs. Apple's products do tend to be insanely priced most of the time (which is why the iBook is the only Apple product I own), but there's the odd exception.
Saying Apple is always too expensive is just short sighted.

Quote:

But what if you want to buy a $600 laptop?

If you want to buy a $600 laptop, you buy a $600 PC laptop, not a Mac (since there isn't one in that price range).
As I said, I didn't want a cheap $600 laptop because any cheap laptops I could find were large, bulky and had shoddy battery life. Not to mention questionable Linux support.

I'm not planning on a laptop replacement yet, but chances are I'll just take another Mac when I do need a replacement. Desktop machines are a different story, I wouldn't get a desktop Mac, personally.

alethiophile

Threads really do get way off topic in this place, don't they.

Thomas Harte
Quote:

I actually just got an Eee PC to keep me occupied during some of my more boring lectures (review coming soon!), and I would have to heartily disagree. If someone were looking for a laptop to use as a portable workstation and did not have much money, I'd recommend a cheap $500 laptop.

$500 is still more than the cost of an Eee. If you're in a realm where price is the absolute determinant then you can't avoid that fact. And in any case, $500 could turn out to be substantially more once the user is in the mire of Microsoft. In my experience, the degree of openness provided by Microsoft and the way that it is implemented lead most users to bog down their machine over the years and then prematurely buy a new one. It's not necessarily Microsoft's fault and it isn't unavoidable, but I'm imagining the situation where an ordinary person walks off the street and says "I want to buy a computer, I want to minimise cost" and then I get neither to lecture that person nor to ever see them again.

So I find not just the price point of the Eee attractive, but the also way that it's a lot closer to an appliance than a full PC — which is what I think a lot of people actually want from their computers. It's like the return of the Amstrad PCW, but now it does much more than basic word processing.

Quote:

While I like the Eee PC for what it is, if I were to make a weekend or business trip, I'd get quite frustrated if I had to use it for extended periods of time as a workstation.

Obviously it'd be incorrect to second guess your thoughts, but I look forward to your review. I have no firsthand experience, I was just going on user feedback I've read on the web and the reasoning expressed above. I could well be wrong.

Matthew Leverton

Walmart sells full sized laptops as low as $400. I just picked $500 because there tends to be a lot of difference between them. The 4GB Eee PC is $400; the 2GB at one at $300 is unreasonably restricted.

Then if you want to get 8GB of extra storage and 1GB of RAM, you are looking at $450 for the Eee PC. At that point you are in the range of cheap, full sized laptops.

It's not that the Eee PC is unusable as a cheap, stand alone PC. It's just if you plan on using it remotely, it's too small for extended use... unless you happen to have an extra monitor, keyboard, and mouse everywhere you go. Couple that with the small storage space, and it becomes not very nice as your only machine.

Its usefulness as a portable machine is mostly limited to when you are going to be in tight spaces (e.g., airplane, bus, classroom, etc). It's only then when you really appreciate its small size.

I agree though, that PCs should operate more like devices for the average user. The trouble is convincing them of that. I think the PDA like icon / fullscreen approach to an OS (like the default Xandros on the Eee PC) is far easier to use than both Windows and OS X without any limited loss of functionality (with respect to how the average person uses a computer).

Dustin Dettmer

A guy asked me if he should buy one of those mac ultra-thin notebook things so I did a thorough comparison of Sony's line up against Apple.

Sony beats them in every department, including cost. If you catch them during a sale you can get an equivalent apple laptop for ~60% of the cost.

I can't see a single logical reason (short of the sexual appeal) to throw your money at an apple laptop.

bamccaig

Personally, I own an iPod. I have a strong distaste for Apple. >:(

BAF
Quote:

I prefer PC hardware because it's cheaper and it's a computer ;D, and then I can install Linux, kill the Windows partition during the install, and have a great OS on an actual machine.

And what do you think a Mac is? It's still PC hardware these days. You can install Linux/Windows on a mac. Also, Linux is probably lower than OS X and Windows on my great OS list. Glad to see we have another anti-MS zealot on the boards here!

Quote:

Sony beats them in every department, including cost. If you catch them during a sale you can get an equivalent apple laptop for ~60% of the cost.

What about an Apple sale? Also, Sony laptops are shit in my opinion. I'm not too impressed with my plastic Gateway either, if I buy another laptop then I'm going back to IBM Thinkpads. They are pricey, but they are built like a tank and loaded with features.

alethiophile

I got my current laptop free from my uncle, so I'm not complaining. 8-) Anyway, I will go for whatever is cheapest if the physical UI doesn't suck.

Dustin Dettmer
BAF said:

Sony laptops are shit in my opinion

What issues have you had with Sony laptops?

ixilom
Quote:

What issues have you had with Sony laptops?

it came with a rootkit ;D

Thomas Fjellstrom
Quote:

it came with a rootkit ;D

Windows? ;D

Thomas Harte
Quote:

A guy asked me if he should buy one of those mac ultra-thin notebook things so I did a thorough comparison of Sony's line up against Apple.

Sony beats them in every department, including cost. If you catch them during a sale you can get an equivalent apple laptop for ~60% of the cost.

I can't see a single logical reason (short of the sexual appeal) to throw your money at an apple laptop.

Well it does sound like you've done a thorough and reasoned comparison there. After all, you've compared the ridiculously priced cut-down laptop that costs about twice the price of Apple's cheapest offering while offering lower performance and fewer features (especially if you don't consider "thinness" to be a feature) with the entirety of Sony's range. And then you've taken that conclusion and applied it to the entire Apple range.

I would say that I bet that the Apple was still cheaper for people that want to edit videos and author DVDs. But then I remembered that it has neither a firewire port nor an optical drive.

le_y_mistar

well, there are some older 'kids' here who compile gentoo and grow neckbeards.

Arthur Kalliokoski

reeeel ma-chure, d00d

BAF
Quote:

compile gentoo

Any modern OS has to be compiled. I highly doubt any of them were written in machine language.

alethiophile

True. Most come in precompiled form, though.

Hard Rock
Quote:

Well it does sound like you've done a thorough and reasoned comparison there. After all, you've compared the ridiculously priced cut-down laptop that costs about twice the price of Apple's cheapest offering while offering lower performance and fewer features (especially if you don't consider "thinness" to be a feature) with the entirety of Sony's range. And then you've taken that conclusion and applied it to the entire Apple range.

Well I was able to put together a 13.3 inch dell xps, LED(extra light and pretty) screen, 2 batteries, 3GB of ram, 8400GT, 200GB 7200rpm hd with the free fall detection, windows vista premium, wireless n wifi, bluetooth, a 2.4 or 2.2 ghz cpu (the slowest core 2 duo WITH 4MB cache, not 2 MB cache) all for $1600 FLAT, after taxes and shipping. The 15inch was about the same price ($50 more) but had a 8600GT instead and a 1680x1050 screen. Oh and both had sound cards.

So what mac compares in price to that? Also the XPS series looks pretty damn nice, and is really thin.

[edit] looks like the closest Mac is $400 more before tax, has 1GB less ram,slower hard drive, smaller resolution (you can drop the XPS resolution to save money), no sound cards, oh and you have to buy a copy of Windows).

I think the 15inchs are damn well comparable and I'm comparing a deal I saw 2 months ago to the newest released Mac Book Pro.

Evert

Hmm... ok, let me compare that to what my requirements for a laptop are.

Quote:

13.3 inch

Huge.
I know, I know, the current generation of Mac laptops is large too.

Quote:

8400GT, 200GB 7200rpm hd with the free fall detection, windows vista premium, wireless n wifi, bluetooth, a 2.4 or 2.2 ghz cpu (the slowest core 2 duo WITH 4MB cache, not 2 MB cache)

How much battery life do you get out of that? What is the weight of the machine?
I personally couldn't give a rat's droppings about the speed of the machine as long as it's fast enough. If I want a fast computer for serious work, I'll get myself a desktop system.

Quote:

The 15inch was about the same price ($50 more) but had a 8600GT instead and a 1680x1050 screen.

15" is way to big to be carrying around.

Quote:

So what mac compares in price to that?

It depends on what you want from a laptop. If what you want from a laptop is the fastest CPU you can get, the largest amount of RAM, the best power-hungry video card and the largest and fastest harddrive, then the answer is none.

Quote:

looks like the closest Mac [...] no sound cards

The cheapest Mac laptop you can get has an audio connector and a headphone connector. What'd you think those are for? Decoration? Of course it has a buildin soundcard, has had for at least the past three years and probably longer.

Quote:

oh and you have to buy a copy of Windows

::)
If you want Windows, stick to you goddamn PC laptop. I don't understand people buying an Apple computer only to run Windows on it. I don't really understand people installing Mac OS on their vanilla PC hardware either, but then again they at least have the excuse that their vanilla PC hardware + OS X is probably cheaper than an Apple computer + OS X.
(No, that's not a contradiction with me saying that my iBook was the best deal for what I wanted back when I got it).

Hard Rock
Quote:

The cheapest Mac laptop you can get has an audio connector and a headphone connector. What'd you think those are for? Decoration? Of course it has a buildin soundcard, has had for at least the past three years and probably longer.

Sorry let me clarify, by sound card, I mean it had a sound blaster Audigy. Basically it supported accelerated audio. Obviously shitty integrated audio is a given ::)

Quote:

How much battery life do you get out of that? What is the weight of the machine?
I personally couldn't give a rat's droppings about the speed of the machine as long as it's fast enough. If I want a fast computer for serious work, I'll get myself a desktop system.

Less then 4 pounds if you drop the video card. (For the record that's a full pound LESS then the macbook. Cheaper too). It even lowers the price. Battery life about 3:30 for internet use. Since a 9 cell battery is also included in that price, that will add an extra 5-6 hours. It even comes with a finger print reader and lots of other stuff.

So the dell is lighter, almost the same size (thinner in the front, a little bit fatter near the battery and has about 1 cm more depth. It's less wide though :)) a little bit less battery life, but you don't have to pay some ridiculous fee to get a new one since you'll have two.

Also it looks really really sweet.

alethiophile

Again: f*** mac hardware, just get a vanilla PC and install Linux. ;D

Thomas Harte
Quote:

Again: f*** mac hardware, just get a vanilla PC and install Linux.

I assume you accept that exactly one solution is not suitable for everyone? If so, then I take it that your argument is that Linux is the best solution for a majority of users. If so, then I don't necessarily have an argument. I don't even really have an opinion and I consider that argument to be completely peripheral to the part of the discussion I've taken part in. I'm just commenting on it because it happens to be the post above.

Linux certainly seems to be a smart choice for basic (as in 'the tasks used by 95% of people in an office') Office functionality tasks and web browsing. And probably the best choice for programmers that like to be able to poke their nose into as much as possible.

Quote:

So what mac compares in price to that? ...
[edit] looks like the closest Mac is $400 more before tax

You think that the Mac laptop that is closest in price to $1,600 is one that costs $2,000? Given that the cheapest Mac laptop is $1,099 and they can be configured to most prices in the range between that and some silly price, I would have to suggest that you may wish to revise your basic numeracy skills.

Quote:

...oh and you have to buy a copy of Windows).

You make a powerful argument. All the people that posted to this thread claiming that Macs were the cheapest way to run Microsoft Windows look pretty foolish now.

Dustin Dettmer
Thomas said:

Well it does sound like you've done a thorough and reasoned comparison there. After all, you've compared the ridiculously priced cut-down laptop that costs about twice the price of Apple's cheapest offering while offering lower performance and fewer features (especially if you don't consider "thinness" to be a feature) with the entirety of Sony's range. And then you've taken that conclusion and applied it to the entire Apple range.

I looked at 3 different apple laptops, each with a few different flavors (ie. the expensive version and the cheaper version). Unless these 3 were Apple's big over priced line-up, I'd say my comparison was fair.

Thomas Harte
Quote:

I looked at 3 different apple laptops, each with a few different flavors (ie. the expensive version and the cheaper version). Unless these 3 were Apple's big over priced line-up, I'd say my comparison was fair.

Clearly I found your original post ambiguous, and misunderstood it. Naturally, I apologise.

I still disagree with your statement that "Sony beats [Apple] in every department, including cost" as even if we trust your survey without any evidence (and I can't think why we wouldn't) then I can't imagine you are comparing on anything except cost. And even then I think you're using a false metric.

By comparing hardware components to hardware components you seem to be saying "let's compare what's the same and easy to compare, ignore what's different or hard to compare." Then you conclude that because your numbers suggest that the bits that are the same and easy to compare can be had for less money, there isn't "a single logical reason (short of the sexual appeal) to throw your money at an apple laptop."

Ignore what I'm otherwise arguing, and ignore what you're otherwise arguing, and just answer these questions:

  • in the real world, is there any advantage to being able to use a computer more competently, more happily or more quickly?

  • is there any evidence that at least some people prefer or are more competent, happier or faster with the workflow on a Mac than a PC?

I maintain that that's at least one logical reason, and so enough to disprove your comment.

In my opinion this whole debate gets muddied by the idiot OS-fanatics of the internet who have no idea of practical reality and are more interested in pushing their opinions loudly than critically assessing them. Which makes it too easy to lose track of what people are actually saying.

Evert

Please forgive my sarcasm.

Quote:

Sorry let me clarify, by sound card, I mean it had a sound blaster Audigy. Basically it supported accelerated audio. Obviously shitty integrated audio is a given

Ah yes, the thing I really cared about when I got my laptop was the quality of its soundcard...

Quote:

Battery life about 3:30 for internet use. Since a 9 cell battery is also included in that price, that will add an extra 5-6 hours.

Oh, so as long as you bring your (charged) spare battery, you'll get decent battery life. Great.

Quote:

It even comes with a finger print reader

Yes, many was the time I thought to myself, "this is a nice laptop, but what it misses is a piece of hardware I have absolutely no use for".

Quote:

and lots of other stuff.

Oh good. More junk I care nothing about.

Quote:

f*** mac hardware, just get a vanilla PC and install Linux. ;D

Yes, because Linux works really well with laptop wireless cards and never gives problems when you try to connect a beamer to it. I don't know, it may work flawlessly these days, but it most definately didn't two years ago.

Seriously. What part of "when I wanted a laptop the Apple iBook was the cheapest laptop I could get that met my needs" is so hard to get?
I use my laptop for work and when I'm travelling. As such, I need to be able to use it to read and send e-mail, to read (PDF) and write (LaTeX) papers, give presentations (PDF) and preferably run some models or data analysis on it (FORTRAN, Perl, some C and all designed to run in a UNIX environment), although any serious work in that area goes to my workstation or a computer cluster. It doesn't need to run games, it doesn't need a particularly good graphics card and I couldn't care less about its soundcard. I wanted something small, reasonably light, not overly expensive and with a decent battery life, preferably running a UNIX system without hassle. Anything cheaper was bigger and heavier and had worse battery life, anything smaller and lighter was at least twice as expensive (and had worse battery life).

If my requirements for the system had been different (say, I had wanted a laptop as a replacement for my desktop machine), I very probably would not have gotten a Mac. But I didn't want a replacement for my desktop machine.

Matthew Leverton

Sounds like you need an Eee PC. ;)

I installed Ubuntu 7.10 on my Dell Inspiron E1405 last night (over top of the wasted 10GB "recovery partition," and it worked with all my hardware out of the box. It's the first version that has proper support for the Broadcom wireless chipset. Even version 7.04 didn't work with it.

I haven't tested out the power management features yet, but overall it is very impressive. I've always been a harsh critic of Linux distributions putting unrealistic ideals ahead of consumers, but Ubuntu knows when to compromise. The package management is slick; it proactively asks you to install proprietary drivers; and it doesn't install dozens of similar software packages.

Missing programs aside (e.g., there is no good GPS driving software to compare with Microsoft Street & Trips), I think it's finally to the point where I could find it nicer to use than Windows and OS X. It's a shame its support for multiple monitors is horrible; using it on my workstation is useless.

But the compiz window manager is awesome. Hands down the best interface I've ever used. It's everything that I like about Windows and OS X put into one.

Evert
Quote:

Sounds like you need an Eee PC. ;)

Maybe. It looks interesting, but based on the reviews I just read the battery life isn't so great (3.5 hours). It's probably also a bit too small to write comfortably on, and in terms of storage space it's also not that great. Still, I'll keep an eye on it for when I need a new laptop.

ReyBrujo
Quote:

Don't they teach kids anything these days?!?! And even if they don't teach things like that, how hard is it to figure out for yourself how to put a bike chain back on?

If it is not in MySpace or Facebook, they don't learn it. Times change, I loved to spend hours fixing the tail of my barrilete until it got the perfect balance to fly over 100 meters away from me (and around 25 or 30 meters above ground). Electricity lines were filled with kite remains! Nowadays, children and teens prefer playing with a PS2. My nephew at 4 has never seen a kite, but is good playing Mortal Kombat 3.

Quote:

But the compiz window manager is awesome. Hands down the best interface I've ever used. It's everything that I like about Windows and OS X put into one.

What the heck! My computer can barely play them. I blame the MX 4000 w/64MB, but if a notebook can run it...

BAF
Quote:

it proactively asks you to install proprietary drivers;

Really? I was messing with kubuntu in a VM, and it was bitching at me because I had the nerve to install proprietary drivers [vmware guest tools]. It was talking about it being a security risk, not supported, this and that. Had to click a few buttons to make it STFU.

Dustin Dettmer
Quote:

    </li>
    Sure.

    Quote:

      </li>
      Your grammar is ambiguous to my eyes, however...
      Some people prefer the workflow on a Mac.
      Some people are more competent on a Mac.
      Some people are happier on a Mac.
      Some people are faster on a Mac.

      All of these issues are irrelevant to a proper comparison. I will give one example of the irrelevance before moving on.

      Example said:

      My grandmother prefers to write letters, she is more competent at writing letters, she is happier writing letters and she writes them faster. She will never use email.

      I wont discuss the irrelevance of your issues any more.

      *** I wrote a long break down of comparisons of Apple and Sony. I decided the conversation would get boring so I erased it (except this last part, cause its so true...) ***

      Additionally, Sony laptops are awesome (I mean, their keyboards don't break. Apple people could appreciate that).

      Matthew Leverton
      Quote:

      It was talking about it being a security risk, not supported, this and that. Had to click a few buttons to make it STFU.

      It doesn't install them by default, but it pops up a dialog saying that here's a list of drivers (Intel video driver, and Broadcom wireless) that are necessary to install for full usage of your computer but that Ubuntu cannot provide support for them. A total of one dialog, which is far fewer than the amount it takes if you were to install a fresh copy of Windows on a Dell laptop!

      On Windows, if you don't have the original driver CD, you have to go to Dell's website, wade through a huge list of potential drivers, and install them one at a time, each with their own wizard.

      On Ubuntu, you press OK on one dialog and you've got them.

      Thomas Harte
      Quote:

      All of these issues are irrelevant to a proper comparison. I will give one example of the irrelevance before moving on.

      You're trying to shift the argument.

      You said that there isn't "a single logical reason (short of the sexual appeal) to throw your money at an apple laptop."

      You accept that:

      Quote:

      Some people prefer the workflow on a Mac.
      Some people are more competent on a Mac.
      Some people are happier on a Mac.
      Some people are faster on a Mac.

      So we can only conclude that you do not consider picking a laptop on which you prefer the workflow or are more competent or with which you are happier or on which you are faster to be "logical".

      Since I do consider all of those to be logical reasons to pick a particular laptop, I doubt if we are going to come to any agreement.

      bamccaig
      ReyBrujo said:

      Electricity lines were filled with kite remains!

      Do we want children grounding themselves to power lines? ???

      ReyBrujo said:

      My nephew at 4 has never seen a kite,...

      Whose fault is that? >:(

      ReyBrujo
      Quote:

      Do we want children grounding themselves to power lines?

      You have never played with a kite, am I right? :P

      Quote:

      Whose fault is that?

      My sister's husband who bought a PS2 :P

      bamccaig
      ReyBrujo said:

      You have never played with a kite, am I right? :P

      Sure I have.

      ReyBrujo said:

      My sister's husband who bought a PS2 :P

      If you're concerned about it why not buy him a kite and organize a day at the park...? ???

      ReyBrujo

      If I were interested in teaching them things, I would have my own children :P I believe parents are the ones who decide how to educate their children. And even when I am playing soccer, he would come and ask when I am going to play Zelda again, so I am guessing he is not that interested in sports.

      bamccaig
      ReyBrujo said:

      If I were interested in teaching them things, I would have my own children :P I believe parents are the ones who decide how to educate their children.

      I agree with you to a point. So it's his parents' fault. :P Still though, I don't see his parents caring if you teach him to fly a kite (so long as you avoid power lines ::)) and if you think it would do him good then it makes sense for you to do it.

      ReyBrujo said:

      And even when I am playing soccer, he would come and ask when I am going to play Zelda again, so I am guessing he is not that interested in sports.

      Are you still talking about the 4 year old? A number of sports are difficult for children to play successfully. It makes complete sense that they would prefer playing a video game that they can master rather than struggling with a game designed for big kids.

      However, you need to encourage them to play sports now so that when they do get big enough to play they want to (because the people they look up to have demonstrated how fun it can be).

      BAF
      Quote:

      It doesn't install them by default, but it pops up a dialog saying that here's a list of drivers (Intel video driver, and Broadcom wireless) that are necessary to install for full usage of your computer but that Ubuntu cannot provide support for them. A total of one dialog, which is far fewer than the amount it takes if you were to install a fresh copy of Windows on a Dell laptop!

      Ah, I had to manually install the vmware kernel modules and such, and once I rebooted and it caught the loaded modules it thought something got hijacked or something. Had to go through 2 or 3 dialogs, but they haven't come back up since.

      ReyBrujo

      Although I don't have those problems (I am used to installing the NVidia drivers through command line), I noticed the dialog when a friend installed it at work. I thought it was pretty cool, because it hid a lot of stuff that is not necessary for the end user.

      Quote:

      However, you need to encourage them to play sports now so that when they do get big enough to play they want to (because the people they look up to have demonstrated how fun it can be).

      Oh, I try. Soccer isn't that hard, just kick a ball. And not even a soccer one, just a balloon of any kind. The problem is, he is through his "dinosaur" phase, where he likes them, so we took him to the natural museum, and to different expositions. But since in games like Zelda you fight against big creatures, he wants to either see a living dinosaur, or the one in the game :P

      bamccaig
      BAF said:

      Ah, I had to manually install the vmware kernel modules...

      There are kernel modules for virtualization? :o

      Thomas Fjellstrom
      Quote:

      There are kernel modules for virtualization? :o

      VMware implements its hypervisor via a kernel module that actually takes over and reboots the kernel ontop of it. Its an odd hack. Also, other parts provide virtualized hardware drivers, like special optimized virtual disk, network, and video drivers.

      KVM on the other hand, uses linux itself as the hypervisor, and the kvm modules just provide hooks for qemu to properly hook into the kernel and the processor's hardware virt extensions.

      BAF

      Uhm, I'm talking about the kernel module drivers for vmware. As in, I was running it under VMWare, so it needed the drivers for full mouse/kb/clipboard/etc integration.

      ReyBrujo

      Just saying, Ubuntu picked KVM instead of Xen (which has been picked by RedHat and Suse). I have never been interested in them, but from what I read, KVM appears to be the less obtrusive one (in terms of kernel modifications needed to make it work) than Xen. Is it right?

      Thomas Fjellstrom

      Quite. Xen provides support for hardware that doesn't support hardware virtualization. KVM depends on it, otherwise it defaults to Qemu's software emulation. But I've been looking at kvm recently, and I think I prefer it over Xen now. It sure is a heck of a lot simpler. You can even do realtime migration over ssh for peatsake.

      ReyBrujo

      So, KVM is like KQemu, switching to Qemu mode if necessary. I have only used VMWare (and Virtual Box), but never full hardware virtualization (other than KQemu). Does it come with some kind of front-end, or it just provides the API needed by Qemu, VMWare, Virtual Box or similar to be used?

      Thomas Fjellstrom

      KVM is an alternative to KQemu to be honest. But its a little more flexible, uses hardware virt extensions (and only hardware extensions, it won't run if you don't have any), and comes with more recent kernels. If you install a KVM package in a distro, it pulls in qemu. Any front ends that work with qemu work with kvm.

      Rash
      LennyLen said:

      Kids these days are useless!

      I agree! They always generalize from a sample size of one!

      LennyLen
      Quote:

      I agree! They always generalize from a sample size of one!

      They also seem to fail to recognize that when someone goes to the effort of putting a [rant] tag in a thread title that it's to indicate that the post serves nothing more than to get something off one's chest and should not be taken entirely seriously.

      Luckily, it appears that most people here seem to have realized that.

      OICW
      Quote:

      Luckily, it appears that most people here seem to have realized that.

      And the others were discussing something completely different. Gee, this thread has been derailed on the first page.

      Thread #595264. Printed from Allegro.cc