PC != Windows

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Re: PC != Windows

Postby shieldforyoureyes » Thu Aug 20, 2009 4:44 pm UTC

phillipsjk wrote:After wasting ~4 hours trying to find a similar picture of a minicomputer, I learned several things:
  • Mainframes tend to be used at about 90% utilization (Wikipedia). I already knew that mircocomputers tend to be used at 10% utilization.
  • Google Image search informs me the the adjective "mini" is applied to everything from actual minicomputers to hand held devices.
  • At one point there were over 100 companies making minicomputers (Blog found on sun website).
  • The distinction between "mainframes" and "supercomputers": supercomputers tend to focus on raw processing, Mainframes I/O (various).

What annoys me is that I may have seen a picture of such a distinctive computer in the past. My first guess (due to the black case) was IBM, but IBM tends to use Blue, rather than red highlights.

Are those grey boxes in the background some kind of Network Attached Storage?
6W per disk x 8 disks per box x 6 active boxes = 288W (not bad now that I worked it out).


Big cube-of-cubes: Connection Machine CM-2 supercomputer. (Unfortunately, empty-CM2-cabinet, to be precise.)
Wall of smaller grey things: Sun E4000's. 14 CPUs apiece, circa 1997.

In the good-old-days, supercomputers were actually a subset of mainframes. That doesn't hold true for massively parellel MIMD machines though, which is what almost all modern "supercomputers" are. (I don't think they really qualify as "supercomputers" either, they're just clusters.)
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby tekk » Tue Oct 27, 2009 12:59 am UTC

10nitro wrote:!
me: eh, GNU/Linux, but whatever, *high fives Davey*

YES someone else here knows it's real name =D *high 5s*

the whole PC thing, I agree with those saying that macs are PCs, if it's a computer, and it's personal, it's a PC...
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Two9A » Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:41 am UTC

You know, I saw a comment on (our good friend) Slashdot the other day that intrigued me. The gist of it was: what's the point of giving the name "GNU/Linux" if there's no reasonable alternative userland to GNU? Since the only major difference between GNU/Linux and GNU/FreeBSD is the kernel and various support mechanisms for the kernel, isn't it worthwhile to drop the Stallmanism every time anyone references either OS?
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Woegjiub » Tue Oct 27, 2009 8:56 am UTC

Two9A wrote:You know, I saw a comment on (our good friend) Slashdot the other day that intrigued me. The gist of it was: what's the point of giving the name "GNU/Linux" if there's no reasonable alternative userland to GNU? Since the only major difference between GNU/Linux and GNU/FreeBSD is the kernel and various support mechanisms for the kernel, isn't it worthwhile to drop the Stallmanism every time anyone references either OS?

Because then we can't do this:

I’d just like to interject for a moment. What you’re refering to as Linux, is in fact, GNU/LInux, or as I’ve recently taken to calling it, GNU plus Linux. Linux is not an operating system unto itself, but rather another free component of a fully functioning GNU system made useful by the GNU corelibs, shell utilities and vital system components comprising a full OS as defined by POSIX.

Many computer users run a modified version of the GNU system every day, without realizing it. Through a peculiar turn of events, the version of GNU which is widely used today is often called “Linux”, and many of its users are not aware that it is basically the GNU system, developed by the GNU Project.

There really is a Linux, and these people are using it, but it is just a part of the system they use. Linux is the kernel: the program in the system that allocates the machine’s resources to the other programs that you run. The kernel is an essential part of an operating system, but useless by itself; it can only function in the context of a complete operating system. Linux is normally used in combination with the GNU operating system: the whole system is basically GNU with Linux added, or GNU/Linux. All the so-called “Linux” distributions are really distributions of GNU/Linux.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Turtlewing » Thu Jan 28, 2010 10:18 pm UTC

Personally I use the term "PC" to refer to any non-Apple brand Personal Computer. Mostly this is because most personal computer manufactures produce roughly comparable products with Apple being the odd one out. Really it's just a matter of Apple's branding and vertical monopoly creating the illusion that they are different while simultaniously Microsoft's horizontal near-monopoly makes the rest of the industry look homoginized, but I often have to make comparasins between Apple's products and those sold by an arbitrary subset of other manufacturers.

If someone could come up with a more correct (and equally easy to say) term I'd actually prefer to use it, but as yet I always get stuck saying "non-apple PC" which shortens to "PC" when I have to say it more than once or twice.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Woegjiub » Thu Jan 28, 2010 11:18 pm UTC

Turtlewing wrote:Personally I use the term "PC" to refer to any non-Apple brand Personal Computer. Mostly this is because most personal computer manufactures produce roughly comparable products with Apple being the odd one out. Really it's just a matter of Apple's branding and vertical monopoly creating the illusion that they are different while simultaniously Microsoft's horizontal near-monopoly makes the rest of the industry look homoginized, but I often have to make comparasins between Apple's products and those sold by an arbitrary subset of other manufacturers.

If someone could come up with a more correct (and equally easy to say) term I'd actually prefer to use it, but as yet I always get stuck saying "non-apple PC" which shortens to "PC" when I have to say it more than once or twice.

Why single out apple at all? They sell PCs which aren't any different to anyone else's, except for the shiny case and draconian lock-in....
The main point of PC!=Windows is that people use the two synonymously.
A PC with OSX is still a PC, so is one with GNU/Linux, *BSD, *Solaris, Plan9 From Bell Labs etc...
I just use the term windows, or for a computer with windows on it - windows box or something along those lines.
I call apple-branded computers PCs because it annoys the apple fanboys, then even more so when I point out that I'm right in my use of the term.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby J the Ninja » Fri Jan 29, 2010 6:25 am UTC

Woegjiub wrote:
Turtlewing wrote:Personally I use the term "PC" to refer to any non-Apple brand Personal Computer. Mostly this is because most personal computer manufactures produce roughly comparable products with Apple being the odd one out. Really it's just a matter of Apple's branding and vertical monopoly creating the illusion that they are different while simultaniously Microsoft's horizontal near-monopoly makes the rest of the industry look homoginized, but I often have to make comparasins between Apple's products and those sold by an arbitrary subset of other manufacturers.

If someone could come up with a more correct (and equally easy to say) term I'd actually prefer to use it, but as yet I always get stuck saying "non-apple PC" which shortens to "PC" when I have to say it more than once or twice.

Why single out apple at all? They sell PCs which aren't any different to anyone else's, except for the shiny case and draconian lock-in....
The main point of PC!=Windows is that people use the two synonymously.
A PC with OSX is still a PC, so is one with GNU/Linux, *BSD, *Solaris, Plan9 From Bell Labs etc...
I just use the term windows, or for a computer with windows on it - windows box or something along those lines.
I call apple-branded computers PCs because it annoys the apple fanboys, then even more so when I point out that I'm right in my use of the term.


Well, if you want to get technical, Intel Macs are still different, and are not "IBM Compatibles" at all, they can just fake it to the point of being able to boot Windows, Linux, etc. People often think they are exactly the same in the firmware department, but they are more like new world Macs with x64 chips than a traditional "PC". EFI, SMC, etc. Apple's locks and drivers are not the only obstacles with a hackintosh, you've got to get it to boot somehow before those are even an issue.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Woegjiub » Fri Jan 29, 2010 8:50 am UTC

J the Ninja wrote:Well, if you want to get technical, Intel Macs are still different, and are not "IBM Compatibles" at all, they can just fake it to the point of being able to boot Windows, Linux, etc. People often think they are exactly the same in the firmware department, but they are more like new world Macs with x64 chips than a traditional "PC". EFI, SMC, etc. Apple's locks and drivers are not the only obstacles with a hackintosh, you've got to get it to boot somehow before those are even an issue.


I'm taking PC as "Personal Computer", Not "IBM Compatible Personal Computer".
They're computers, and they're personal. Ergo, PC.
Nasty hardware locks built into motherboards don't change that, a PC doesn't have to be x86 or AMD86 - Itanium as an example.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Turtlewing » Fri Jan 29, 2010 2:20 pm UTC

Woegjiub wrote:
Turtlewing wrote:Personally I use the term "PC" to refer to any non-Apple brand Personal Computer. Mostly this is because most personal computer manufactures produce roughly comparable products with Apple being the odd one out. Really it's just a matter of Apple's branding and vertical monopoly creating the illusion that they are different while simultaniously Microsoft's horizontal near-monopoly makes the rest of the industry look homoginized, but I often have to make comparasins between Apple's products and those sold by an arbitrary subset of other manufacturers.

If someone could come up with a more correct (and equally easy to say) term I'd actually prefer to use it, but as yet I always get stuck saying "non-apple PC" which shortens to "PC" when I have to say it more than once or twice.

Why single out apple at all? They sell PCs which aren't any different to anyone else's, except for the shiny case and draconian lock-in....
The main point of PC!=Windows is that people use the two synonymously.
A PC with OSX is still a PC, so is one with GNU/Linux, *BSD, *Solaris, Plan9 From Bell Labs etc...
I just use the term windows, or for a computer with windows on it - windows box or something along those lines.
I call apple-branded computers PCs because it annoys the apple fanboys, then even more so when I point out that I'm right in my use of the term.


Except, because of the lockdown, there are no non-Apple branded Mac OS PCs available. Additionaly the differences between Apple brand PCs and other brand PCs hardware configuration wise is grater than the difference bwteen most non-Apple brands (it's like how 6 attoms of Oxygen can end up as 3O2 or 2O3 just because they're made of the same parts doesn't mean the configuration is the same or that there's no difference).

End result:
I am more likely to have to compare Apple vs Dell, Toshiba and Gateway than I am to have to compare Dell and Toshiba vs Gateway and Apple. Hence why Apple get's a privlaged position in termonology.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Woegjiub » Fri Jan 29, 2010 10:40 pm UTC

Turtlewing wrote:Except, because of the lockdown, there are no non-Apple branded Mac OS PCs available. Additionaly the differences between Apple brand PCs and other brand PCs hardware configuration wise is grater than the difference bwteen most non-Apple brands (it's like how 6 attoms of Oxygen can end up as 3O2 or 2O3 just because they're made of the same parts doesn't mean the configuration is the same or that there's no difference).

End result:
I am more likely to have to compare Apple vs Dell, Toshiba and Gateway than I am to have to compare Dell and Toshiba vs Gateway and Apple. Hence why Apple get's a privlaged position in termonology.

I'd argue that it was unfair that there was only apple hardware available for purchase with OSX installed, but considering that it's easily the worst OS in terms of freedom of the major three, it's a moot point anyway - restriction is apple's signature.
You're right though, there are apple fanboys and apple haters (raises hand) - you don't see dell or lenovo fanboys.
I've noticed that it seems like I'm a google and linux fanboy... But they both just seem to do almost everything right IMO.
Think google will offer chrome OS PCs as an alternative to "a PC or a mac"?
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby styrofoam » Tue Jul 20, 2010 8:43 pm UTC

Two9A wrote:The gist of it was: what's the point of giving the name "GNU/Linux" if there's no reasonable alternative userland to GNU?

Ever heard of Busybox+ucLibc? Happens to run on the Actiontech modem this post flows through.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Thesh » Wed Jul 21, 2010 2:33 am UTC

I propose using the terms Heterovendor machines instead of PC as they come from different vendors, and Homovendor machines instead of Mac since they are a distinct class coming from the same vendor.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby styrofoam » Wed Jul 21, 2010 3:34 pm UTC

Thesh wrote:I propose using the terms Heterovendor machines instead of PC as they come from different vendors, and Homovendor machines instead of Mac since they are a distinct class coming from the same vendor.

Too long, and the best shortened terms (hetero and homo) are already used.

... or were you being sarcastic?
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby mikecoulter » Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:34 pm UTC

It's greatly annoying how it's meaning is misconceived. But to be honest, Apple furthered peoples misconceptions with their add campaign separating "Macs and PCs ".
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby hotaru » Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:34 pm UTC

styrofoam wrote:
Two9A wrote:The gist of it was: what's the point of giving the name "GNU/Linux" if there's no reasonable alternative userland to GNU?

Ever heard of Busybox+ucLibc? Happens to run on the Actiontech modem this post flows through.

there's also android, chrome OS, webOS...
Code: Select all
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{ if(!(
1)) return 2;
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== 143) return 11;
  if(
== || == 77 || == 91) return 7;
  
= (>> 4) + (0xF); += >> 4&= 0xF;
  return (
== || == || == || == 12 || == 15) ? :
         (
== || == 10) ? 0; } 
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby J the Ninja » Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:58 pm UTC

styrofoam wrote:
Thesh wrote:I propose using the terms Heterovendor machines instead of PC as they come from different vendors, and Homovendor machines instead of Mac since they are a distinct class coming from the same vendor.

Too long, and the best shortened terms (hetero and homo) are already used.

... or were you being sarcastic?

I think that was a supposed to be a sly "MACS ARE GAY LOL"
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby tuseroni » Thu Jul 22, 2010 1:51 am UTC

i view the "pc='personal computer'" the same way as i view the "rpg='role playing game'" as a relic of the time the term existed.
you see, in the old days there were board games, there were card games, and there were role playing games...played with a pencil and paper and dice you took on the role of a character and....um...did stuff...epically...then a new kind of game came around, the video game. and role playing games came to video games, translations of D&D or similar style games, then more came out which were nothing like those games but still had you playing the role of a character (such as action games) eventually most ALL games involved you playing the role of a character and could all be called "role playing games" but there already existed a well defined genre called role playing games who would no longer have a name, what would the final fantasies or dragon quests be if they were in the same genre as the gtas and pitfall...so they got to keep their name and everyone just silently agreed to overlook the fact that rpg means role playing game and by that definition only it can refer to most ALL video games (except the snarky gits who try to whip it out to win some argument to prove their game is an rpg)
well pc is the same basic area...pc long became intel (like i86 or even amd64...even though that amd...intel eventually copied it anyways) and refered to that type of architecture...the powerpc (even if it has PC in the frikken name) architecture then became known as mac and everyone just overlooked the fact that pc means personal computer...i could go into a long history on the origin of the term to differentiate from the large room sized computers of old, or even the smaller but still huge by todays standards consoles of old...but ive already given my lecture for the thread.

and while it does irritate me that people think pc=windows...people who think that...i dont know if i want them on linux...they are the kind of person who would put in their root password because a program asked them nicely.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby B.Good » Mon Jul 26, 2010 2:10 am UTC

Thanks for reminding how much the statement that a PC is a computer that runs Windows pisses me off.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby uiri » Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:20 am UTC

The only reason I really hate this is because I once met a Mac user who, after I told him I ran GNU+Linux, insisted on drawing a distinction between a Mac, a PC and “a Linux”. I corrected his terminology once or twice, and pointed out that not only are Macs and computers running GNU+Linux almost by definition personal computers but that they all run on x86, most commonly, and the only other real competitor in terms of architectures to the x86[-64] is ARM which is only used for embedded devices because that is what it is designed to be used in.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Amnesiasoft » Sat Aug 21, 2010 8:37 pm UTC

uiri wrote:ARM which is only used for embedded devices because that is what it is designed to be used in.

Maybe one day we'll see the arms of ARM strongarm it's way into desktopland. Beware my armory of puns.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Bipod » Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:58 pm UTC

I obviously agree that in the most technical sense, any Personal Computer would be a PC. However, I do also think that the fact it has become common use for any machine running Windows just shows language in action, and that PC ~= Windows.

(I used this as an example in class for something regarding whether the correct plural of octopus was octopi, because Latin or Greek root etc. blah blah blah to show how language changing can result in at least slang correct words. The ENTIRE class laughed for a minute and a half. I'm still scratching my head on that one.)
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby phillipsjk » Mon Aug 23, 2010 4:52 pm UTC

Can a Windows-based computing machine even be called a "Personal Computer" anymore?

A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection

The DRM "features" were not dropped with the release of Windows 7. IMO, if your computer is designed to prevent you from performing specific tasks, it is no longer a "general purpose" computer. A "computing console" would be a better term.

So, does a "Personal Computer" actually have to be a "general purpose computer" or are "computing consoles" like the Xbox, Wii, or PS3 allowed to be "Personal Computers" as well?

Edit: I disagree with the above poster: I think "PC" refers to any personal computer. However, the term "computer" has drifted to the point that "computer" means "Appliance running Microsoft Windows." Witness the Solid State Disks being removed form netbooks when they started to become popular. Now netbooks use a slower, larger, more power hungry spinning disk so that Windows XP can be installed. :roll:

I suppose by recursion, even my definition of "PC" implies "Windows" :P
Last edited by phillipsjk on Mon Aug 23, 2010 8:57 pm UTC, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby uiri » Mon Aug 23, 2010 5:23 pm UTC

Bipod wrote:(I used this as an example in class for something regarding whether the correct plural of octopus was octopi, because Latin or Greek root etc. blah blah blah to show how language changing can result in at least slang correct words. The ENTIRE class laughed for a minute and a half. I'm still scratching my head on that one.)


Most likely it was because:
  • They don't know of any operating system but Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X
  • They don't know that since 2006 Macs are made of the same stuff as non-Apple branded computers anyways
  • They buy into Microsoft and Apple's marketing.

I generally correct people who misuse and/or abuse the term PC. Although I may sound like someone from the 17th century who reminds people that Apple refers to all fruit outside of berries and nuts and not just what we refer to today as apples.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby styrofoam » Mon Aug 23, 2010 11:19 pm UTC

phillipsjk wrote:The DRM "features" were not dropped with the release of Windows 7. IMO, if your computer is designed to prevent you from performing specific tasks, it is no longer a "general purpose" computer.

Does the OS really matter if you can install your own OS on it?

phillipsjk wrote:So, does a "Personal Computer" actually have to be a "general purpose computer" or are "computing consoles" like the Xbox, Wii, or PS3 allowed to be "Personal Computers" as well?

If you can install Linux on it (naturally, that's not all computers...), it's probably a computer. Yep, that means stuff can become a computer without any changes except for the environment it exists in (it's now been successfully jailbroken).
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby tuseroni » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:27 am UTC

phillipsjk wrote:Can a Windows-based computing machine even be called a "Personal Computer" anymore?

A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection

The DRM "features" were not dropped with the release of Windows 7. IMO, if your computer is designed to prevent you from performing specific tasks, it is no longer a "general purpose" computer. A "computing console" would be a better term.

So, does a "Personal Computer" actually have to be a "general purpose computer" or are "computing consoles" like the Xbox, Wii, or PS3 allowed to be "Personal Computers" as well?

Edit: I disagree with the above poster: I think "PC" refers to any personal computer. However, the term "computer" has drifted to the point that "computer" means "Appliance running Microsoft Windows." Witness the Solid State Disks being removed form netbooks when they started to become popular. Now netbooks use a slower, larger, more power hungry spinning disk so that Windows XP can be installed. :roll:

I suppose by recursion, even my definition of "PC" implies "Windows" :P


my god, i cannot keep reading that....it makes me want to commit bodily harm to everyone in microsoft not chained to their desks.(which i how i imagine the programmers at microsoft. or kept at a competence level just good enough to program in .net, but still dumb enough to be loyal to microsoft)
this...i...the...it....guh...its like reading 1984 without the reassurance of its fictional state. every time i find myself asking "how can microsoft get away with that" and inevitably coming back to "because people keep buying their products"

i dont even smoke and that made ME want a cigarette...
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby stephentyrone » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:38 am UTC

tuseroni wrote:I dont even smoke and that made ME want a cigarette...

That good, huh?
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby tuseroni » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:39 am UTC

no, that upsetting...
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby phillipsjk » Tue Aug 24, 2010 2:29 am UTC

styrofoam wrote:
phillipsjk wrote:The DRM "features" were not dropped with the release of Windows 7. IMO, if your computer is designed to prevent you from performing specific tasks, it is no longer a "general purpose" computer.

Does the OS really matter if you can install your own OS on it?


Yes, Yes it does. As with the netbook example, the decision to ship with WindowsTM restricts the hardware choices. Suddenly you need: more than 16GB of disk space, 256MB of RAM, an x86 instruction set, and any video out needs to be programmed with a secret interface (If running Windows 7).

Many manufactures are reluctant to release hardware specifications (probably because much is implemented in software) for video cards, Wireless radios, modems, and printers. Installing your OS of choice may be a multi-year project (of dubious legality) if you want everything working "just so." It is likely easier to build your own system than to buy a pre-made one.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby styrofoam » Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:11 am UTC

phillipsjk wrote:As with the netbook example, the decision to ship with WindowsTM restricts the hardware choices. Suddenly you need: more than 16GB of disk space, 256MB of RAM, an x86 instruction set, and any video out needs to be programmed with a secret interface (If running Windows 7).

And that has a bearing on whether it's a computer, why?
phillipsjk wrote:Installing your OS of choice may be a multi-year project (of dubious legality) if you want everything working "just so."

Okay, at the point when it's impossible, it ceases to be a computer. But honestly, the terminology war is silly. We both agree the situation sucks; that's what matters most...
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby phillipsjk » Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:54 am UTC

As hinted at by the article that disturbed tuseroni, Some (but not all) Logo certified hardware can be designed to actively resist the use of alternative OS's. Came across this article today: Even More Incriminating Evidence in The Foxconn Debacle! (July 2008). It is circumstantial evidence, but still evidence. A possible bug in Foxconn boards BIOS affects Linux ACPI (more detail).

The conversion of a "computing console" to a "general purpose computer" may be considered "circumvention of effective technological measures" under Article 11 of the 1996 WIPO Copyright Treaty and Article 18 of the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty. Many countries prohibit "circumvention devices" when ratifying those treaties.

Because of how DRM and the Universe works, it will always be possible to install your own OS. That does not mean it will necessarily be legal. There is precedence for the US government classifying Personal Computers as munitions. All this may be a little off-topic though.

On topic: That video describes the "Power Macintosh G4" as a "Personal Computer."
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby hotaru » Tue Aug 24, 2010 6:31 am UTC

phillipsjk wrote:The conversion of a "computing console" to a "general purpose computer" may be considered "circumvention of effective technological measures" under Article 11 of the 1996 WIPO Copyright Treaty and Article 18 of the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty. Many countries prohibit "circumvention devices" when ratifying those treaties.

well there is the matter of the word "effective" there... measures that can be circumvented so easily are far from effective.
Code: Select all
uint8_t f(uint8_t n)
{ if(!(
1)) return 2;
  if(
== 143) return 11;
  if(
== || == 77 || == 91) return 7;
  
= (>> 4) + (0xF); += >> 4&= 0xF;
  return (
== || == || == || == 12 || == 15) ? :
         (
== || == 10) ? 0; } 
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby phillipsjk » Tue Aug 24, 2010 7:00 am UTC

While "effective" usually means "reliably accomplishes a goal," it can also mean "policy that is currently in place."

If you assume the stronger definition of "effective," those clauses are self-contradictory.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby spupy » Thu Jan 20, 2011 1:10 am UTC

Vault wrote:I was talking about the Mac vs PC commercials specifically, and I also think that in most people's minds anything non-Mac = PC. The Linux users I know would say that they own a PC, so as far as I can tell, the only thing associated with being not a PC is Mac. Most of the Mac users I know would call their computers a Mac (I'm probably guilty of this too). Thinking about it though it sounds really weird to identify your computer by the OS it runs. "Do you have a PC? Nope, I've got a Debian" "Do you have a PC? Nope, I've got a Windows" "Do you have a PC? Nope, I've got a Mac"


Why so? I'd say that OSs are the main culprits when it comes to incompatibilities.

stephentyrone wrote:They're identifying it by the hardware brand, not the OS. As in "I have a Dell", which is a completely reasonable thing to say. The only thing that's interesting is the distinguishing of a specific case (Mac) from the generic term (PC).


It is reasonable, but only in some contexts. When describing what your computer is capable of, stating the brand will only answer the question due to the general assumption of what OS might be running on that brand of computers. (excluding the hardware, of course, where there is even less difference between "PCs" and Macs.)
Looking at the OS installations that are non-Windows and non-OS X for "PCs" and Macs respectively, I'd say that assumption is correct most of the time. Leading to the whole "PC!=Windows" and "Macs are PCs" issue.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby JoeZ » Thu Jan 20, 2011 3:45 pm UTC

The way I see it, Macs are PC's in the same way that squares are rectangles. Usually, it's much more helpful to refer to a square as a square, rather than a rectangle, because the square has special properties. A mac can run osx without modification of the OS or kexts, a PC can run one or more OS's without modification. Usually, if I say rectangle, I'm talking about something with two different lengths of sides, and if I say PC, I'm talking about something that can run some OS's but not OSX.

Since the whole point of buying a mac is to run OSX, this makes perfect sense to me.

(I guess you can buy one because it looks pretty, then install something else, but I can't quite understand that mentality)
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Endless Mike » Thu Jan 20, 2011 9:09 pm UTC

tuseroni wrote:what would the final fantasies or dragon quests be if they were in the same genre as the gtas and pitfall..

I kind of find this funny since I would say modern GTAs more fit the definition of RPG than modern FFs.

But on topic, I agree that PC doesn't mean Windows. And I say that as someone who owns two Macs. (Plus a self-built desktop running Windows 7 and a netbook running Ubuntu.)
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby GenericAnimeBoy » Wed Feb 02, 2011 6:55 am UTC

jrife0 wrote:Does anybody else get annoyed when people think PC is a synonym for windows? I do.

You are fighting a losing battle, sir. A noble battle, indeed, but also a losing battle. My parents call the desktop shortcut to their web browser "the internet". I'm not kidding. :evil:
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby jswf » Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:48 pm UTC

GenericAnimeBoy wrote:
jrife0 wrote:Does anybody else get annoyed when people think PC is a synonym for windows? I do.

You are fighting a losing battle, sir. A noble battle, indeed, but also a losing battle. My parents call the desktop shortcut to their web browser "the internet". I'm not kidding. :evil:


My dad uses a 'geek machine', and my mum uses her 'Fedohra Linex' to produce 'Microsoft doc'. :roll:
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby WizenedEE » Fri Feb 11, 2011 6:16 am UTC

GenericAnimeBoy wrote:
jrife0 wrote:Does anybody else get annoyed when people think PC is a synonym for windows? I do.

You are fighting a losing battle, sir. A noble battle, indeed, but also a losing battle. My parents call the desktop shortcut to their web browser "the internet". I'm not kidding. :evil:


In what context? Do they say "I'll start up the internet here.." or like "I'll open the internet..." Because they are viewing, and therefore opening (parts of) the internet with the shortcut. "Starting" the internet is incorrect, but it is starting it for you.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby GenericAnimeBoy » Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:52 pm UTC

WizenedEE wrote:In what context? Do they say "I'll start up the internet here.." or like "I'll open the internet..." Because they are viewing, and therefore opening (parts of) the internet with the shortcut. "Starting" the internet is incorrect, but it is starting it for you.


No, they are viewing webpages, which are delivered via the internet, in their web browser program. I'm not just being pedantic. The failure to understand that the internet is a communication link with the outside world ('a series of tubes' :roll: ) and that webpages are only one aspect of what it is capable of delivering is kind of a big deal. It has broad implications throughout computer literacy, perhaps most importantly including security--people who think that they "closed the internet" when they exited their browser are far less likely to understand how the '101 smilies' thing they installed is actually stealing their personal information.
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Re: PC != Windows

Postby Alexander The 1st » Fri Feb 11, 2011 8:28 pm UTC

GenericAnimeBoy wrote:
WizenedEE wrote:In what context? Do they say "I'll start up the internet here.." or like "I'll open the internet..." Because they are viewing, and therefore opening (parts of) the internet with the shortcut. "Starting" the internet is incorrect, but it is starting it for you.


No, they are viewing webpages, which are delivered via the internet, in their web browser program. I'm not just being pedantic. The failure to understand that the internet is a communication link with the outside world ('a series of tubes' :roll: ) and that webpages are only one aspect of what it is capable of delivering is kind of a big deal. It has broad implications throughout computer literacy, perhaps most importantly including security--people who think that they "closed the internet" when they exited their browser are far less likely to understand how the '101 smilies' thing they installed is actually stealing their personal information.


So, uh, when you read a book:

You are viewing inked pages, which are delivered via the book spine, pulled together by their book covers, where the inked pages are written by the author and the book cover by the illustrator. The book spine is a whole different detail, with manufacturers taking the inked pages, and putting them between the book covers. So, you're not viewing "the book", you're viewing "the inked pages in the book."

Frankly, the internet is just a giant book spine bound by ISPs, with the browsers the book covers, and the inked pages the .html files.

But you know what? I'm viewing this on a thing we call the Internet.
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