Latest Posts

A comparison of quad-core server CPUs

For anyone looking to buy a workstation or server CPU, quad-core CPUs have become mainstream. Therefore it's important to know what you're getting for the money so I've compiled a chart with general purpose computing performance using the SPEC CPU database with the highest scores as of December 28, 2007.

January 2, 2008 by George Ou


Vista deactivates me for upgrading motherboard firmware

Updated 8:40AM - After going to "Windows Help and Support" in the start menu, I searched for Activate and the second choice was "Activate this computer".  Using the phone option I called an 800 number and spent 3 minutes waiting and 3 minutes talking to a person.

December 23, 2007 by George Ou


How LCD makers inflate their contrast ratio scores

If you've ever wondered why contrast ratios claims of LCD monitors can swing so wildly from product to product, here's the explanation:There are "dynamic contrast ratios" and then there are "static contrast ratios".  Static contrast ratios is defined by the ratio of the brightest part of an LCD screen to the darkest part of an LCD screen that can be simultaneously displayed on the screen.

December 22, 2007 by George Ou


How LCD makers lie to you about viewing angles

I was in a large computer store looking at computer LCD monitors and a lady was asking about which one was the better one to buy.  A man (presumably her family) told her that the ones which indicated TFT (Thin Film Transistor) were the ones to buy.

December 16, 2007 by George Ou

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SPEC launches standardized energy efficiency benchmark

SPEC (Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation) launched its first standardized energy efficiency benchmark SPECpower_ssj2008 this week which tackles something that the computer industry has struggled to define in recent years.  With datacenter energy costs spiraling out of control, server customers have struggled to sort out the conflicting messages from technology vendors about who is the energy efficiency leader.

December 13, 2007 by George Ou


All SPEC CPU results for AMD Barcelona invalidated

As of today, all of AMD's Barcelona SPEC CPU results so far have just been invalidated and labeled "Not-Available" by SPEC due to violation of the 3-month availability clause.  AMD is struggling with availability of its new quad-core “Barcelona” chips because of yield problems in manufacturing and the newly disclosed TLB (Translation Lookaside Buffer) bug.

December 12, 2007 by George Ou


Why metered Internet is a really bad idea

The above image from Lauren Weinstein's blog shows why metered Internet is a really bad idea and obnoxious.  It shows Canadian ISP Rogers Internet altering web pages to warn you when you go over 75% of your 75GB cap.

December 10, 2007 by George Ou