I finally did it. I got my hands on some netbooks. I went to a technology seminar for vendors yesterday and got to test 3 netbooks. The benchmark I used was from the January 1983 BYTE magazine but I added a few enhancements to it so it now calculates and displays its performance and lists a few of the results from 1983. I heard at least four people at the seminar disparaging netbooks as being of very limited capabilities.

Everyone tries to compare things to what is latest and greatest today. The computer I use most is a custom built machine based on an ASUS motherboard with a 2.66 GHz Pentium 4. It wasn't the fastest thing going in 2005 but just the mobo and CPU cost me more than $400. I named it Blackjack because the case is black and it is listed in the benchmarks below. My Archos PMA400 pocket computer is also listed. The Archos retailed for $800 but I bought it off Ebay for $300.

I tested 3 netbook which all had Intel Atom processors at 1.6 GHz. I checked a Lenovo, an ASUS Eee PC and some NO NAME Tiawnese clone netbook that the salesmen didn't even know the name of.

They all came up with exactly 0.0022 on the benchmark.

I also took some MP3 files on the USB stick and tried to play them to check the sound quality. I couldn't get the Lenovo to produce any sound. Windows media player was running and producing that light show in time with the music but no sound. The salesman coudn't get it going either. I got the ASUS and the NO NAME to play but the sound was really low. They had a DJ playing music so it wasn't a quiet environment but I think the sound was unacceptable. I tried my PMA400 for comparison and it was about the same in that environment. I almost never turn on the speaker with the Archos. It is just about worthless without headphones.

But the important point is that 0.0022 on the benchmark. The netbooks were 3 1/2 times as fast as the $3,000,000 1978 mainframe running Assembly language while my benchmark was compiled C. The compiled C on the netbooks was 16 times as fast as compiled PL/I on that mainframe. So the real question is, "Why do you need more processing power than that in a portable format?" Why not have a powerful desktop at home to do your heavy lifting and use the netbook on the go. Is the real problem simply that today's software is too bloated and inefficient?

So I see no reason not to think that these netbooks should be perfect for school kids. If anything they almost have to be OVER POWERED for grade school kids. So how do we mold the future with the sci-fi technology that we now have at our fingertips?

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

100,000 iterations

Start time: 2009 Fri May 22 00:41:47

Stop time: 2009 Fri May 22 00:42:07

The duration was 20.0 secs or 0.0020 secs for 10 loops.

1899 primes. The Sieve enhanced by Dead C.A.T. Software.

C.A.T. == Computerized Anachronisms Test, providing Real Time perspective.

The IBM 3033 mainframe cost $3,000,000 in 1978. [You are not allowed to LAUGH!]

  --------  Data from January 1983 BYTE Magazine  --------  

Computer       Language                   Seconds

IBM 3033       Assembly                    0.0078  fastest CPU+SWare tested
IBM 3033       PL/I                        0.036   21.7% efficient
IBM 3033       COBOL                       0.0824   9.5% efficient
68000 8 MHz    Assembly                    0.49
VAX-11/780     C (UC Berkley)              1.42
8086  8 MHz    Assembly                    1.90   100%
8086  8 MHz    C (Digital Research)        2.8     67.9% efficient
8086  8 MHz    C (Microsoft)               6.0     31.7% efficient
8086  8 MHz    C (Computer Innovations)    7.2     26.4% efficient
8088  5 MHz    Assembly  [CPU of IBM PC]   4.0    100%
IBM PC 5MHz    C (Computer Innovations)   22.0     18.2% efficient
IBM Series 1   COBOL                      38.7 
Z-80            Assembly                   6.8    100%
Z-80             C (BD Systems)           15.2     44.7% efficient
Apple II          Pascal (Apple)         160
Z-80               COBOL (MS V2.2)      5115     = 1:25:15 slowest 0.13% ef

  ----------  New tests on more recent CPUs  ----------  

TI OMAP5910 150 MHz GNU C               0.0522 Archos PMA400 Linux
Pent 2 300  MHz     GNU C               0.0148
AMD Geode 433 MHz   GNU C               0.0122 OLPC XO
Pent 3 500  MHz     GNU C               0.0087
Pent 3 1.3  GHz     GNU C               0.0035
Pent 3 1.8  GHz     GNU C               0.0024
Atom   1.6  GHz     GNU C   netbooks    0.0022 Asus/Lenovo
Pent 4 2.66 GHz     GNU C   Blackjack   0.0020 Single-Core 1 program
Pent 4 2.66 GHz     GNU C               0.0040 Single-Core 2 programs
Pent 2D 2.8 GHz     GNU C               0.0019 Dual-Core   1 program
Pent 2D 2.8 GHz     GNU C               0.0019 Dual-Core   2 programs


um
There were reps from NVIDIA and Intel at the show.

There is rumor of a Dual-Core Atom processor and a Graphics Processor chip called ION from NVIDIA.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13924_3-10214096-64.html

http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=663

Supposedly the ION chip is in the hands of manufacturers and netbooks incorporating it will be out in a couple of months. The Intel rep was being cagey about dates for a dual-core Atom. It may be nearly a year for that.

um
quote:
Originally posted by negrospiritual:
Do netbooks allow you to burn CD's and upload video?


Netbooks do not have built in CD or DVD drives. That is one reason they are so light and cheap. I have heard contradictory information about them playing HDTV. Most sources have said they don't but a couple say they do. It may depend on which model.

Once the machines have the Nvidia ION chip built in they should play HDTV. I personally don't care about HDTV, I don't even want it in my house but there may be other relevant applications so I don't think I will buy a netbook until some 12 inch model has that feature.

um
The technology is being manipulated for the money.

Living with the limits of Windows 7 Starter Edition

http://blogs.zdnet.com/Bott/?p=844

Intel Confirms Atom Will Cost More for Netbook Makers Who Embrace ION

http://blog.laptopmag.com/inte...kers-who-embrace-ion

Linux Distros For Netbooks

http://www.informationweek.com...3&queryText=&isPrev=

Macro$cam is putting limits on Windows 7 so people must buy more expensive hardware and software to go beyond them. The hardware manufacturers want Microsoft to do this. These netbooks are too cheap and don't have big enough profit margins to suit them. So this may be a good reason to switch to Linux.

I have been talking about Black people worldwide standardizing on Linux for various websites but I can't even get a conversation going.

um
I have been talking about Black people worldwide standardizing on Linux for various websites but I can't even get a conversation going....um

Back in the '80s, I was intrigued with Linux.

I say 'intrigued', because I did not fully understand it then, and don't now.

I was attracted to the touted compatibility with essentially everything else 'out there'.

That would get rid of all the niches.

I am not, however, that computer-savvy.

Most aren't.

And most don't want to be.

It's sort of like cars.

I own one.

I need one.

I know how to drive most cars.

FINI.


PEACE

Jim Chester
quote:
It's sort of like cars.

I own one.

I need one.

I know how to drive most cars.

FINI.


Yeah, it is. I built one of these when I was in grade school.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8aKoWgGw9_8

It was great for helping me understand how engines work. I know what a cam shaft is. That does not mean I know how to take a real engine apart and replace the cam shaft or that I want to. But I was walking home from the store one day and a woman was trying to get her car started and it sounded like the battery was nearly dead. She had the hood up so I walked over and looked at the battery terminals. One terminal had a ring of white crystaline powder around it. I grabbed the cable and twisted it pack and forth. It moved easily because it was loose on the terminal. I told her to rev the engine and it started right up.

I am not suggesting that everyone learn the innards of Linux. But if users switched to Linux it would mean not having to upgrade when Macro$cam decides and put up with limitations that Bill Gates puts into the software.

Suppose 1/3rd of Black people world wide started seriously talking about standardizing on Linux over 5 years. How big a market would that make? Why couldn't it be served by our own Black Linux experts?

The history of the last 500 years has been about who had technology and who didn't. Black Americans can quit talking about freedom as long as we accept technological dependence.

Knowing Black history ain't going to solve a damn thing. Except create jobs for Black history teachers.

um
Now this is curious. Isaac Asimov in 1988.

Isaac Asimov on Bill Moyers World of Ideas pt 1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CwUuU6C4pk

Isaac Asimov on Bill Moyers World of Ideas pt 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJAIERgWhZQ

Isaac Asimov on Bill Moyers World of Ideas pt 3
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEHtt5sGbTw

In #2 he is saying what could be done with Netbooks though they hadn't been developed yet. In 1988 Intel had not yet introduced the 486 processor. The Pentium was still 5 years away. I don't think more power could do grade school kids much good now.

But also no one was envisioning hard drives as big as we have now in 1988. Who needs libraries with terabyte drives in your house?

Now it is all up to us with what to do with the tech.

http://sharepointineducation.com/?tag=netbooks

http://www.education.vic.gov.a...netbooks/default.htm

um
quote:
Samsung NC-10: just not tough enough for school

So far, we have 40 Samsung NC-10 netbooks deployed in the school; some running Vista, and some running the Windows 7 RC. They’ve all been upgraded to 2GB of RAM and are joined to the domain. They are running pretty well, but in the last week we’ve been finding some problems.

Basically, these machines are just not bloody tough enough. We’ve previously used nothing but Dell laptops, and despite our relatively well-behaved students, they do take a bit of a bashing. After only a month, the Samsungs are not faring well, and 3 are already out of action.


http://angrytechnician.wordpre...ugh-enough/#more-961

http://jeffmcneill.com/2008/11...0h-one-month-review/

http://www.liliputing.com/2008...itpickers-guide.html

um
quote:
Originally posted by ricardomath:
I just purchased a Toshiba NB 205.


http://jameswharris.wordpress....shiba-nb205-netbook/

http://www.laptopmag.com/revie...iba-mini-nb-205.aspx

http://www.pcworld.com/article...ook_fight_night.html

http://technologizer.com/2009/...b205-netbook-review/

http://gigaom.com/2009/08/11/t...th-premium-features/

http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/p...a-NB205-Netbook.html

Congratulations! So you are the first AAOer to become netbook equipped.

Sorry, second. Frenchy got one.

I have just tested 3 and read about them. I am waiting for a few 10 and 12 inch ION machines to choose from.

Do you have a USB optical drive?

How did you pick the Toshiba and what others did you compare it to?

um
quote:
Originally posted by umbrarchist:
quote:
Originally posted by ricardomath:
I just purchased a Toshiba NB 205.


http://www.laptopmag.com/revie...iba-mini-nb-205.aspx

http://www.pcworld.com/article...ook_fight_night.html

Congratulations! So you are the first AAOer to become netbook equipped.

Sorry, second. Frenchy got one.

I have just tested 3 and read about them. I am waiting for a few 10 and 12 inch ION machines to choose from.

Do you have a USB optical drive?

How did you pick the Toshiba and what others did you compare it to?

um


No external optical drives, but I have a cd/dvd reader on my old linux laptop that i can use to read Cds if necessary. And a couple of USB external hard drives from a couple of years ago.

There were 3 considerations that I had in mind when I purchased it.

(1) Battery life.

(2) Battery life.

(3) Battery life.

9 hours stacked up well against the compeditors that had 3, 4 or 5 hours listed.
quote:
There were 3 considerations that I had in mind when I purchased it.

(1) Battery life.
(2) Battery life.
(3) Battery life.

9 hours stacked up well against the compeditors that had 3, 4 or 5 hours listed.


It is so nice to communicate with someone that knows what he wants. LOL

I was talking to a woman that said she was thinking about getting a desktop a few days ago. She asked me what was the best. I asked her what she intended to do with it. It was like pulling teeth.

IONizing the Atom

um
G vs N

This is the first article I have seen to make a BIG DEAL of this. Most hardly mention it.

http://itmanagement.earthweb.c...ers-Better-Wi-Fi.htm

Newer technology is usually better to some degree but it is not necessarily a deal breaker.

Here is something a budding computer geek might find interesting:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t...mYvvSavRqGDdF1rmcMjA

um
Nec VersaPro VS-7, the Ultimate Netbook is Japanese! (Quick Review) [but over $1000] $1850???

http://www.akihabaranews.com/e...+(Quick+Review).html

http://nexus404.com/Blog/2009/...e-resistant-chassis/

http://www.netbookchoice.com/2...-quick-review-video/

http://blog.laptopmag.com/1850...-obscenely-expensive

Nice specs but does not seem worth it to me. I would pay 50 to $100 more to be assured of a more rugged machine. But 1 1/2 pounds isn't that much better than 3 pounds.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Pioneer Adds Netbook DVD/CD Burner

http://www.twice.com/article/3...ok_DVD_CD_Burner.php

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Klingons need netbooks too.

http://www.atom.com/funny_vide...181AEE4001700A6E1A3/

um
Here is a long, 9 page, article about BIG netbooks.

Aspire One 751 vs. Gateway LT3103
Battle at 11.6"
http://techreport.com/articles.x/17249

Gateway LT2000: A New Netbook Appears
http://www.pcworld.com/article...netbook_appears.html

Still no ION platform. td6

Are Netbooks Green? 6 Pros and Cons
http://www.treehugger.com/file...-and-cons.php?page=2

Do these people know what they are talking about?

quote:
The netbook and notebook categories have become all mixed up and unsophisticated buyers are just going to plump for dinky little machines which appear to be vastly better value than their overpriced brethren. They're not better value and netbooks underperform compared to fully fledged notebooks.

http://www.tgdaily.com/content/view/43483/145/

I agree with this dude:
quote:
# J said:
June 12th, 2009 12:24 PM

Microsoft and Intel should shut up and give consumers what they want instead of using their near-monopolies to force people to buy expensive, bloated software and overly powerful hardware.

http://www.netbookchoice.com/2...books-to-102-inches/

quote:
instead of developing more and more bloated software that negate simultaneous increases in hardware processing power/speed, we should be making software more efficient so that casual computing can be done on cheaper and cheaper systems that require less power & energy rather than more.

the average user should be able to accomplish everything they need to do using a 700-800 MHz low-power processor with 256 MB of RAM. they'd not only save on their electric bill, but we'd be creating a more sustainable society. besides, unlike the PC gamer, media/graphic design professional, the casual computer user shouldn't need to upgrade their hardware every single year to keep up with increasing resource intensive software.

http://ask.slashdot.org/articl...sid=08/10/26/1518250


It will always be possible to make $900/9 pound laptops more powerful than $300/3 pound netbooks. But how many people need that much power and how often do they need it? I could have a desktop 10 times as powerful as my netbook but use the netbook 10 times as often as the desktop. I can't take the desktop to the park to read an e-book while drinking a pina colada in the shade of a tree.

um
WHY BUY A NETBOOK?

Here is why:

quote:
Open-Source Textbooks

* Abstract Algebra: Theory and Applications, by Thomas W. Judson.
LaTeX source distributed under the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL).
* Whitman Calculus, by David Guichard
An introductory calculus text. Distributed under a Creative Commons License (Attribution, Non-Commercial, Share Alike).
* Vector Calculus, by Michael Corral
Third-semester calculus: vectors, functions of several variables, multiple integrals, line integrals. Distributed under the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL).
* Linear Algebra, by Jim Hefferon
An introductory linear algebra text. Distributed under both the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL) and a Creative Commons License (Attribution, Share Alike).
* A Problem Course in Mathematical Logic, by Stefan Bilaniuk.
LaTeX source distributed under the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL).
* Introduction to Programming Using Java, by David J. Eck.
Distributed under the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL).
* Programming Languages: Application and Interpretation, by Shriram Krishnamurthi
Distributed under a Creative Commons License (Attribution, Non-Commercial, Share Alike).
* Introduction to Probability, by Charles M. Grinstead and J. Laurie Snell.
Distributed under the GNU General Public License (GPL).
* OpenMathText.org, by David Santos and Alain Schremmer.
A variety of comprehensive lecture notes, many distributed under the Open Publication License (OPL).
* Introduction to Economic Analysis, by R. Preston McAfee.
Distributed under a Creative Commons License (Attribution, Non-Commercial, Share Alike).
* Calculus-Based Physics, by Jeff Schnick.
Distributed under a Creative Commons License (Attribution, Share Alike).
* A First Course in Complex Analysis, by Matthias Beck and Gerald Marchesi
Free to use for educational purposes at institutions of higher learning, source available on request.
* Elements of Abstract and Linear Algebra, by Edwin H. Connell.
See Chapter 5 for linear algebra done at a higher level. Free to view, but copyrighted.
* Light and Matter, Ben Crowell.
Free physics textbooks.
* LibertyTextbooks.Org, Ben Crowell.
A single CD with many open-content texts.

http://linear.ups.edu/opentexts.html

Are the educational institutions going to have to fight a rear guard action against computers? I don't think we have seen what computers are going to do to society yet.

um
quote:
Originally posted by umbrarchist:
quote:
Originally posted by ricardomath:
Hurray for LaTeX!!!



appl appl bow bow appl appl


Now see, you think you are real funny.

Just you wait 'til get my cruise missile programmed and targeted on your house.

And it won't take no damn calculus neither. spank

What the hell is that upside down L business?

um


It never ceases to amaze me to see the differences between professionally and comercially produced mathematics monographs from just a few decades ago in the pre-TeX era with their handwritten symbols and typewriter font printing and whatnot and the beautifully and precisely typeset mathematical manuscripts that I can produce on my PC today using LaTeX with almost no effort at all.

What I write may or may not be profound, but I'll be damned if it isn't the most beautiful peice of typesetting in the history of the universe.

tfro
Will IONs be in the Ionosphere?

How long will they maintain that altitude?

quote:
Ion-packing Netbooks: Samsung N510 finally arrives next month

Price is reported to be $599, which is roughly a hundred-dollar upgrade from the highest-end Netbooks we've encountered.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10307347-1.html

HP has announced the Mini 311 for $399. It has an 11.6 inch screen and the ION processor. So the Samsung is now over priced.

quote:
Samsung 256GB MLC SSD Expensive, but worth it

http://www.maximumpc.com/artic...amsung_256gb_mlc_ssd

um
There is a threat to netbooks.

Toshiba Satellite L355

quote:
Measuring 15.6 x 11.4 x 1.6 inches and weighing 7 pounds, the L355 is not unreasonably heavy for a notebook this size; in fact, it feels lighter than you might think when you pick it up. We found it easy to shuttle from room to room, which is about how far you’re likely to transport it.

http://www.laptopmag.com/revie...-satellite-l355.aspx

Toshiba is underslling its own netbook.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

From Windows 7 Back to XP on the Toshiba NB205 Netbook

http://jkontherun.com/2009/08/...shiba-nb205-netbook/

um
quote:
Originally posted by umbrarchist:
quote:
Originally posted by ricardomath:
Oh, I carry mine alot further than just room to room.


Yeah, I know. Out to that hammock in the back yard. lol

um


Unfortunately, the hammock broke a while back.

Now that was a pain in the ass.

Need to go on a diet, I guess.
quote:
Originally posted by ricardomath:
Unfortunately, the hammock broke a while back.

Now that was a pain in the ass.

Need to go on a diet, I guess.


That is total bullshit!

As someone that tears a lot of stuff apart and talks to a lot of other tech/mech guys I see this country falling apart in a way that I don't hear most people even mention. Electronic equipment that I would have to regard as well constructed today I would have spat on back in the 70s. No hammock should have broken unless you weigh more than 500 pounds. It should have been illegal to sell that shit.

There are some things I buy now and immediately reinforce if it is cheap enough. Buy another hammock and figure out where the weak spots are and reinforce it with rope or something.

Of course extra cushioning on the stomach to protect the netbook can't hurt. lol

umbra
quote:
Asustek is the most reliable PC According to Rescuecom

By Nick Farrell
Wednesday, 19 August 2009, 11:31

ASUS makes the most reliable personal computers in the US, according to the blokes who have to fix PCs when they explode.

Rescuecom pens a computer reliability report every month. Asus, Apple and Lenovo are the top three makers of most reliable PCs.

http://www.theinquirer.net/inq.../asustek-reliable-pc

quote:
The un-Netbook: Acer laptop hits $279 at Best Buy


http://news.cnet.com/8301-13924_3-10313889-64.html

um
The Macro$cam holdup.

quote:
Windows 7 Starter Edition Is Too Wimpy for New Netbooks

Jeff Bertolucci, PC World

Aug 24, 2009 5:07 pm


http://www.pcworld.com/article...or_new_netbooks.html

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

The shape of things to come for $100

quote:
World’s 1st Real Smartbook Review
Reviews - Smartbook Reviews
Written by Tai-Pan
Monday, 24 August 2009 17:37

Under the hood
The Lanyu eBook was reported to have a 266MHz ARM processor from Anyka when it first appeared on the web. When we checked the properties of the My Computer on the device it shows a AKARM,ARM 920-AKCHIP. The only information we found on the internet about this chip was this page which says it comes from AMD (rather than Anyka as we reported earlier) and that it’s a 533MHz sku. I don’t think that site is particularly reliable so it safe to say we’re not really 100% sure about the processor under the hood. Personally my money is on Anyka.

I would say however that the applications that are included seem quite responsive if not quite “snappy” in terms of general use. We’re going to take a closer look at the devices media playback properties and office performance in tomorrow’s video coverage of the device.

We do know you get a gig and a half of memory with the device. Which will make the card reader slot invaluable. That sounds small, and it is, but there are a couple of benefits to that. No hard drive really drops the weight of the device down. At .6kg this device is incredibly portable and light weight.

There are 3 USB ports as we mentioned and pulling the screenshots off the device to a USB memory stick proved that 1 of those USB ports was completely non-functional. I tried several different brands of memory and none worked.

http://www.shanzai.com/index.p...ook-reviews&Itemid=1

quote:
How to Buy a Netbook

08.26.09

If you're not thinking about buying a netbook, you should be—they're powerful, portable, and even more inexpensive than a year ago. Here's what you need to know before you buy.

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2351912,00.asp

http://www.businessweek.com/te...ology+product+review

http://compreviews.about.com/o...ooks/tp/netbooks.htm

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10319602-1.html

um

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