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March 28, 2008

Wrong tradeoffs and hardware design

Some people know how to build parts of a computer together, know what makes up a good computer and what computer users really need. Some others do not. It is a pity, that responsible engineers at a major computer manufacturer belong to the latter category.

Lets have a look at my two and a half year old Thinkpad T43.

Thinkpad T43

This notebook is based on a pretty modern Pentium M CPU with Dothan core, that features all the power saving techniques:

Little power consumption means little heat, the notebook should run on battery for a long time and be quiet. But it is much more noisy than my desktop computer in fact.

Lets have a closer look at the design (I mean, not how cute it is from the outside, but what are the intrinsic values):

Infrared LED


It is unbelievable, how compact the semiconductor parts were even 2.5 year ago. So if you do not waste the space and throw away all the unneeded crap like modem, parallel ports, dvd-drive, you can easily create something as lean as a MacBook Air.

So if you do not know how to design computers, do not do it, do something else! Oops, they already desided to give up.

And on next opportunity I will review the enterprise software development tools from the same vendor.

Posted by VladimirDobriakov at 4:15 PM | Comments (0)

March 27, 2008

From Ubuntu to Mac OS X and back in less than one week!

I have been using Ubuntu Linux as my primary OS for about one year now. The advantages are:

However, there are some disadvantages regarding hardware support,

especially for notebooks. I had a misfortune ordering a notebook with an ATI graphics card: the open source driver is not very advanced though progressing well and the proprietary one from ATI crashes randomly or does not support standby or complicated to install or all of these, depending on the version.

The promise

The promise of a Mac is that you get

So after all the pain setting drivers, editing xorg.conf, reading in the user groups, trying out all the howtos and recompiling kernel modules I decided to switch to MacBook Pro and Mac OS X. I have not decided to “give it a chance” - I decided to switch forever. I have turned the old notebook off and started doing the day-to-day stuff on the Mac.

The keyboard

The keyboard layout is is the most weird thing on the Mac.

Window Manager




Posted by VladimirDobriakov at 9:16 PM | Comments (0)

March 25, 2008

The weather

It has snowed for 5 days in a row. Pretty untypical for the end of march in the Lower Rhine area.


So the official season start at the local wind surfing club in two weeks has obviously to be postponed… I have a cold anyway :-(

Posted by VladimirDobriakov at 9:47 AM