28/02/2001 Graphics chip company nVidea chooses Paris to launch its GeForce3, a video processor of such stunning capability it can even do facial hair. What to you or I is mere unsightly growth turns out to be an incredible test of macho pixel pounding power -- I daresay Intel will include a Grow_Stubble command in a future version of SIMD. It has to be said that watching video cards get better and better is a very pleasant part of the job, even if they've long since gone past the point when anybody other than gamesplayers can do anything with them. Every couple of years some bright spark claims to have come up with a business interface that uses some of the three-dimensional shading, stippling, light sourcing and texturing that modern chips do with insouciant ease, and every couple of years people shake their heads and go back to pretending to write on pieces of paper. One day, it will happen and we'll all have much more fun with riots of cascading colour and shapes. Until then, the only reasons to buy a better graphics cards are that you want to then spend lots more money on videogames, or you just want to annoy your friends.