When To Buy A New Computer

September 29, 2010

I know you are wondering what a cement block and a bungee cord have to do with buying a new computer, right?

Well they have a lot to do with it.
Let me explain.
Processors and associate hardware double in power every 18 months while it takes on the average 6 years to write software for the new processors and associate hardware. So there is a major gap; how big a gap?
From the Pentium 3 to the Pentium 4 was a doubling of power and from the Pentium 4 to the core 2 was another doubling. Then from the Core 2 to the Dual core was yet another doubling! I know my words just don’t seem to convey the reality.

For illustration purposes lets say the Pentium 3 is a car that travels 20 miles in an hour, can you visualise that?  Great , now then the Pentium 4 travels twice that, doubling the power, going 40 miles an hour. Now the following year the Core 2 comes out and it is double in power and to continue our illustration it is traveling at 80 miles per hour! Now then what is the speed of the Dual-Core processor in this illustration? 160 miles per hour! With the Quad-Core processors what is the speed? 320 miles per hour!

Does this help?

Pentium III

 

 

 

 

Remember this all takes place in less than 6 years!

Now comes the part about the cement block and bungee cord!!

Now remember hardware double every 18 months while it takes about 4 years to write the Operating system that can utilize the new powerful components. So what take place between these four years? Updates and patches.

Picture your Operating system as the cement block and the bungee cable the updates and patches which is tied to the bumper of your car (computer) . As the new hardware comes out they use the older operating system which will require advanced drivers to link with the new processor and chips and major software updates. So as time goes on the core of the operating system doesn’t really change just like the cement block. But the updates and drivers get pulled greater and greater like that bungee cord getting stretched until finally the cement block takes to the air and comes crashing down! Average time to the flying cement block 4 years!

This is why there was Windows NT then Windows 2000 then Windows XP then Windows Vista then Windows 7

Are there alternatives?

Yes, get a different cement block (operating system) with a longer bungee cord (updates and drivers) like Linux but 8 years is the MAX before the flying cement block. 🙂

Did the hexa-core (six core) processors come out yet?

Yep the first months of 2010.

When is Windows 8 coming out?

Late 2012 or 2013 or ….

In the mean time there are going to be a TON of updates  🙂

 

by R. Frank Tulak

 Related articles for further reading:

The Real Beanstalk

Computers in Cars?


Let There Be Light!

August 8, 2010

Have you ever read the Bible?

Gen 1:3 “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.”.

Did you notice as you continued to read that it wasn’t till the fourth day that the stars and sun and moon came into existence? So what light was God talking about in Gen 1:3?

Well according to John 1:1 and Heb 11:3 and 2 Peter 3:5 it is God’s Word.

God’s light is his thoughts and images.

 The great combination of thoughts and images transmitted by light  has been the Holy Grail that has been sought after since the first computers were connected. Obviously it was God’s idea first. 🙂

Why?  Because there is nothing faster than light!

Now that the new processors spend most of their time waiting for the data to proccess, the need to get the data to them faster is crucial. The year that light enters the computer as an interface is 2011!  It is this coming year that copper will begin to be replaced with a new fiber optic interface, designed by Intel Corp, which is called Light Peak!

I know what your thinking, fiber optic cable travels at 2 gigabyte so not a big deal, right? Well this design adaptation begins at 10 gigabytes and can easily go to 100 gigabytes.  

Imagine downloading a blueray movie in less than 30 seconds!   Imagine only one cable connecting your computer to your high definition monitor, then to your then TV, then it connects to your printer, then another computer, then….  There is no limit to the amount of connections and different data types, and the cable is 1/3 the size of  aquarium air tubing.

Instead of hundreds or thousands of wires for differnet signals and data there is only one!

With existing servers and the internet how much of the cabling is copper wiring?  What will this do to the internet and communications industry?

With aircraft how much of the weight is copper cabling ?  What will this do to the aircraft industry?

With robotics, how much of the robot is copper wire? What will this do to the robotics industry?

  
In the begining God brought forth his images, thoughts and words as light and created the world we have now.

Now man will  bring forth his thoughts, words and images as light and the world’s change will begin.

by R. Frank Tulak


When the Stars Threw Down their Spears

June 15, 2010

We should all recognize this line from Blake’s poem “The Tyger” written just before 1800’s when England’s influence was beginning to dominate and control India and the mysterious Indian tiger evoked images of  fear and fascination.

The simplicity of the verse in the poem could allegorically describe a great discovery in the field of physics called cosmic rays. (but I seriously doubt Blake knew about cosmic rays 🙂 )

Why are they important?  Because in the field of Astrophysics they become the exception to theoretical rules.  Or they down right smash them!

First; what are cosmic rays?

They are atomic nuclei (mostly hydrogen or helium elements ) stripped of their electron shells, shooting through space at extreme  high velocity.

Are you getting the right image of what i am saying?
All right then let me put it another way.
If the nuclei of a hydrogen atom were the size of a basketball, the outer electron shell would be 8,000 miles away!  That’s the approximate distance from San Diego, California to Bangkok, Thailand.  Does that help?

This is why cosmic rays (particles ,”ray” being a misnomer at the time of discovery) mostly pass right  through us and additionally right through the earth!  The chances of hitting another nuclei are very slim but when they do WHOA !

Now for the “extreme high velocity” mental illumination.

These ultimately smallest of particles are clocked at speeds 248.5 miles (400km) a second and greater but the most shocking to all scientists was the OH MY GOD PARTICLE  discovered on the night of October 15, 1991 by the University of Utah’s cosmic ray detector.

Remember what you were taught in school; that nothing can travel at the speed of light or even approach that speed?  Why?  Because the closer matter approaches light speed the greater it’s mass increases thus slowing it down. The problem is this particle didn’t go to the same school we did nor did the source that sent it!

How fast was this infinitesimal proton going? 2.9999999999999999999999853×108 metres per second !  You are probably wondering why the speed is just not given as 3×108 BECAUSE 3×108 metres per second IS THE SPEED OF LIGHT !  This little mighty mouse after traveling across space for one year would be only 45 nano meters behind the photon (light particle) that left with him.
Remember a nanometer is only three to five atoms wide, while a human hair is about 60000 nanometers in diameter.
Was it’s mass increased?  Oh Yeah!
When this infinitesimal sub atomic particle was detected the instruments indicated a mass and force of a baseball moving at 60 miles an hour!

Let’s take a nuclei of an atom of an element in one molecule of water, within one of our cells, and shoot it through with one of these cosmic bullets.  What would happen?  Not only would that element change but also the molecule and that molecule would be removed from the body.
But whoa that is a different thing when your computer processor gets hit!

The processors are becoming more like molecules than pieces of equipment. Every two years they shrink the components of the processor chip to where they are nanometers apart; just like in a complex molecule. What happens when a nucleus of one of the atoms of the processors’ transistors gate gets nailed by a OH MY GOD PARTICLE  what then? Imagine  seeing a rising mushroom cloud coming out of your computer and the temperature rising to a 1000 degrees… just kidding 🙂

It wouldn’t be any different from what a power spike or static discharge would do.

Would it still work?  Possibly, but not very well depending on where the hole is.  It’s hard to believe that a computer would not function with holes blown through it’s processor but trust me on this 🙂

Has there ever been any computer damage attributed to cosmic rays?  Yes.  Especially at high altitudes above the protection of the atmosphere and the denser part of the earth’s magnetic field. For the IBM research on cosmic ray damage to computers and memory click HERE

Is there anything we can do to stop cosmic rays from destroying our computers?  Don’t use your computer while in orbit around the earth or outside the protection of the atmosphere 🙂  Seriously, the odds are you will more likely destroy your computer by voltage spikes and transient voltages, rather than by cosmic rays.  Unless you’re an astronaut!

When the stars threw down their spears,
And watered heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb, make thee?

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright,
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

If you have questions about using a UPS to protect your computer give us a call at IBEX or place a comment on this article.

by  R. Frank Tulak

Further reading:

The Domino Effect

Most Lethal #6


Computers in Cars?

May 14, 2010

In the next 4 years a computer in your car will not be your notebook computer that you carried  into your car but will be a major part of your car!  

Imagine you are driving on the freeway in the rain and your car goes into a skid, wouldn’t it be of great value to you if the skill set of the world’s greatest drivers were given to you to avoid an accident?  What if that knowledge was programmed into the car?

What if you were late for a major appointment and your car would drop you off and go park itself?  Then when your meeting is over and you are leaving you could call your car to meet you at the front of the building.  Your car pulls up as you’re going through the door to the street, recognizes you and opens its’ drivers side door for you.

No I haven’t been watching too many James Bond movies or TV reruns of Knight Rider.  This is what is available now.

The question is “are the computer processors and chips the same in the car as in the notebook computer?”

NO!

The car’s internal environment can go to extreme temperatures.  Try sitting in the car with the windows rolled up on a summer day with the engine turned off and no air-conditioning.  Does the word “cooked” bring any images to mind?  On the other hand many a car is buried under snow with the temperature going below zero!  Does the word “frozen” bring any images to your mind?  The car’s computer is required to work in these extreme environments while your notebook computer is designed to work in an environment that you are comfortable in.

What do you do if you leave your computer in the car with the windows rolled up in summer?

Don’t turn it on until it returns to normal temperature which will take about 40 minutes to an hour.

What if you leave it in the car overnight during freezing cold?

Don’t turn it on!  Wait for the temperature to return to normal AND THE CONDENSATION TO EVAPORATE !  The best is to wait over an hour or more closer to two before turning it on.

REMEMBER computer’s are begining to do that which has made us superior,  think!

 

by R. Frank Tulak

 

Additional reading:

Most Lethal #2

Most Lethal #3 

The Real Beanstalk


Two Tiny!

March 23, 2010

Vervain

We should all recognize this creature as the animal with the highest metabolism of any other creature on earth!

While sipping nectar from a flower the hummingbirds wings beat 50 times per second and are capable of beating up to 200 times a second to escape a predator.  They can fly in all directions: forward, backward, and sideways. They can also stop in mid-air; their wings beating and rotating like little helicopters.

Where does the fuel come from to keep this little guy going?

The nectar provides the fuel; every one of the 1000 flowers that this little guy visits in a day is a fuel stop.

What always amazes me is that no one ever wonders, where does the  protein come from to repair and grow his little body?

NO, sugar (nectar) is not a source of protein.

Ever notice that the flowers that this little guy sips the nectar from have no aphids? or caterpillars? or ants? or gnats? or mosquitoes?

Guess why.  He ate them!

20% of their daily diet is insects, but when it’s time for migration or nesting time comes along our little guy turns into quite the carnivore consuming almost half  his weight in insects. Nature helps by providing the ultimate “convenience store and fast food shop in one”  for the hummingbird; the local spider’s web!  It is there, caught in the web, insects too small for the spider to pay attention to, that our little guy can pick and choose until the owner of the web shows up.  To the hummingbird the spider is a big ball of food with eight legs!

Then also the solution to the humming-birds “home” problem is solved.

What is the problem?  How to get a nest to  stay stuck to a branch and hold together when it’s just a little bigger than a half dollar. The solution is the spider’s silk from the spider’s web!  It’s the spider’s web that provides the means to hold the little nest together and keep it held to the tree.

What happens if the Hummingbird gets caught in the web? Well, if the hummingbird didn’t eat the spider before being caught in the web the hummingbird will be eaten by the spider. If the spider has been eaten and the hummingbird gets caught in the web he will die from exhaustion or starvation.

Processor with a grain of rice !

We should all recognize at least two of the objects in this picture, right?

 

by R. Frank Tulak

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The Death of the Disk

February 13, 2010

If you found this would you know what you are looking at?

This is the first talking machine!  It recorded speech and played it back to you as you turned the crank.

When was this made ? 1887.  The same time as electricity was being harnessed and the light bulb, telephone and automobile  were being  invented and developed.

What is it’s name?  The phonograph.

I know what your thinking that the image does not look like a phonograph.

Well let me introduce to you the gramophone that came out a year later.

Because the method was the same as the phonograph but  just the means were different, people called the  gramophone  the phonograph.

And just as confusing the cylinder and the platter were both called recordings or records holding 2 minutes of voice or music.

By the 1920’s the invention of the radio and it’s spread throughout every household had forced the closure of many recording companies resulting in the demise of the cylinder and dominance of the platter as the standard for recordings.

In the 1930’s the invention of magnetic tape competed with the disk platters as the standard of recording and continued to do so until the 1980’s where the two were joined with the disk platter coated with magnetic material for recording.  Mass storage for main frame computers had used magnetic disks from the 1970’s for data.

Now the platter could hold sound and/or  data.  In the computer they were the mass storage.

Video and movie storage was still restricted to celluloid; because the storage capacity for a single full color image could never be stored on a computer’s hard drive, the image was too big!

In 1985 an alternate media was applied to the disk to increase capacity and incorporated the laser, it was called the laser disk or compact disc. The CD ROM exceeded the capacity of the hard drives of the time and could hold images and videos.  Meanwhile as the hard drive platters continued to grow in capacity and CD ROM’s developed into the DVD’s,  3.5″ floppy disks were replaced by  flash drives. In 2000 a little flash drive could hold 8 meg of data and against the 1.44meg  floppies there was no competition.   In 2001 the digital media players (MP3)  hit the music world and continue to take out large chunks of the market from CD’s.

What is inside the flash drive and the digital media players?

Magic rocks! Silicon memory chips.

The new storage  media is digital and it’s capacity is doubling each year!

Ah but will digital replace the hard drive?

In 2009 the 80, the 160, the 320 giga byte and the 1 tera byte Solid State Drives (SSD) drives were released.

Here is the difference looking at the insides of the two drives; the hard disk drive and the solid state.

 Notice a big difference?

In a very short 4 to 6 years the disk will be dead.

Will anyone miss it ?

Probably not, but I thought you’d like to know 🙂

by R. Frank Tulak


When the Earth Gets Slapped

January 18, 2010

If you have ever been slapped you have noticed that it only hurts where you have been hit the other parts of your body feel fine except maybe your ego.

Solar flares and “Coronal Mass Ejections” are a part of our Sun’s existence it’s what it does. It’s nothing personal. There are 11 year cycles where our Sun goes through a period that it is reasonably peaceful and at other periods is extremely violent.

Our little Earth orbits the massive Sun at about 67,000 miles an hour and we are 93,000,000 miles away from it.  Usually it takes 3 to 4 days for a Coronal Mass Ejection to collide with our Earth’s orbiting path.

What is the difference between a solar flare, solar wind and a Coronal Mass Ejection?

The surface of the Sun does not radiate uniformly over it’s surface. Rather the surface is turbulant and violent; more like a furious storm of supper heated plasma, with pockets thousands of degrees different in temperature. Picture in your mind sitting at your fireplace with a roaring fire and feeling the waves of heat coming from the fire. Well constantly the Sun is emitting charged particles with it’s radiation; where these particles concentrate is called a solar wind.  Now imagine looking at the flames leaping from the logs, well just like the flames,  solar flares are localized explosions on the Sun where hot plasma will get shot out from the Sun. Now imagine while you sit at the fire and somewhere within the burning wood there is a loud bang and a piece of flaming wood and charcoal come flying out of the fire-place at you!  Well with the Sun when mammoth mountains of the solar surface is thrown out into space, that would be a Coronal Mass Ejection. The video below is the SOHO satellite’s images of the Sun’s surface for the last 48 hours where you can detect the differences between solar wind, solar flare and a coronal mass ejection. (The solar disk is blocked simulating an eclipse to facilitate viewing)
Do Sun spots have anything to do with solar flares and coronal mass ejections?  Sun spots occasionally are the cause of solar flares but they are definitely the cause of coronal mass ejections!  Because, unlike the Earth,  the magnetic poles of the Sun are in constant motion and the massive electromagnetic fields create whirlpools, vortexes in the plasma that may extend miles below the Sun’s surface (picture in your mind a sling shot being pulled all the way back).  This vortex or whirlpool in the plasma is that sun spot. Then, in an instant, the magnetic fields shift and then the slingshot is released!

A sun spot is the barrel of a gargantuan plasma cannon!

Millions of tons of super heated plasma from below the Sun’s surface is shot from the Sun at over 2 million miles an hour! If we are in its path it will not be a good thing. 🙂

The Earth is always hit with solar wind and solar flares but a Coronal Mass Ejection is a whole other thing!

This image show the first moments of the Sun slapping the Earth with a Coronal Mass Ejection.  The faint blue line represents the ionosphere while the turquoise lines represent the earth’s magnetic field that supports the Ionosphere. Depending on the force and mass of the Coronal Mass Ejection the ionosphere and magnetic fields will buckle and bend compressing the Ionosphere closer to earth.  Now we have to stop and think about something.  Why are the contact poles on your car battery the distance they are, why are they not closer?  Because the electricity in the battery will arc if they are closer. Okay, now lets look at this situation as the Coronal Mass Ejection which is superheated and supercharged electrically to the tune of trillions of volts negative; strikes our Earth which is electrically positive it compresses the Ionosphere shortening the distance between the Coronal Mass Ejection (extremely negative) and the Earth (positive) until ARC !  Can this be seen?  No, but the effects will be everywhere!  Why can’t it be seen?  Because the air of the atmosphere  you are breathing is the conductive material!  What will it feel like?  Some say it’s like ants crawling on your skin, others say it’s like wearing a wool sweater, while others notice nothing at all!  What are the effects? Depending on the dispersal field and the mass of the coronal ejection; everything that conducts electricity will have had thousands of volts pass through it!

Will this be the end of the earth?  NO!

Just the end of anything electrical for that city, state or country on Earth that was facing the Coronal Mass Ejection when it hit.

The biggest recorded Coronal Mass Ejection hitting the Earth was September 1st through 2nd 1859  at the speed of over 5.2 million miles an hour.  The coronal mass had traveled 93,000,000 miles in 17 hours and 40 min.  The bombardment continued as the Earth rotated so that Europe and the United States had every telegraph line ( it was the only electrical appliance at the time) shorted out or melted causing fires everywhere.  The Aurora Borealis filled the night sky as  far south as Rome, Havana and Hawaii.

(There have been Coronal Mass Ejections 100 times more powerful recorded but they did not hit Earth.)

The second biggest Coronal Mass Ejection to hit Earth was on May 15th 1921 which started also in Europe and finished in California.  All Telegraph wires and everything connected to them became fried or burnt.  Aurora Borealis was reported in Mexico and Cuba.

The third one and smallest of the three was in March 1989.  You can probably guess which city was facing the Sun when the Coronal Mass hit and melted the main transformer at Hydro-Quebec (Canada) causing the power grid to go down for over nine hours.

Back in March 2009  NASA-funded a study by the National Academy of Sciences entitled “Severe Space Weather Events-Understanding Societal and Economic Impacts” that you can buy for $31.00.  The premiss of the book evaluates total damage directly and collateral from a Coronal Mass Ejection hitting the United States of the same magnitude of the 1859 event or the 1921 event.  How far in detail does it go? It even tells you how long your toilet will be inoperable!  For a quick review of the report click here.

Ever wanted to go back to the days of  the novel “Gone With the Wind” or the days of Sherlock Holmes?  Well when these events happen again, you’re there, back before the time of electricity!

Will your computer work?  Not until power has come back on (which will be many months later). But when it does, if you didn’t have a good UPS that gave up its life “taking the bullet” to protect your computer all the insides of the computer will be charcoal!  Was your computer backup device plugged into the electricity when the Coronal Mass hit?  Then it too is toast!

Remember BACK UP YOUR DRIVES then LOCK UP THE BACKUP!

This is a good idea whether we get slapped by the sun or not and it saves our ego from being hurt! 🙂

Life is the gift, electricity is only the gift wrapping and bow.

 

by R. Frank Tulak