I've just finished my journey installing a fresh copy of Windows on a wonderfully clean, formatted drive. On a laptop that has a 100% busted CD drive.
Now I don't mean to say I performed the miracle of installing software without a working CD drive.. I did use one. Instead of shelling out oodles of cash to a "Certified Toshiba Repair Center" for labor and price-inflated parts(*cough*COMPUSA*cough*), I picked up a USB drive enclosure on Newegg for ~35 bucks, and popped an old would-be-useless CD drive I had laying around in there.
You can't just tell my laptop to boot from an external USB drive. Its accessible area of anything resembling a BIOS is limited to some pre-determined boot devices you may choose from in the form of cute little icons, displayed for you at boot if you figured out the F-keys go all the way up to "F12".
Well thankfully, a very useful site exists at Bootdisk.com. There, for a "donation" of $4, I was able to get my hands on an assortment of drivers/files that let you boot random USB drives from DOS. Its quite an adventure when the fate of your machine that can run at THOUSANDS OF MEGAHERTZ is in the hands of a modified *Windows 98* boot disk. What are we supposed to do when Microsoft finished completely, for real, we mean it this time, abandoning Windows 98? Am I going to actually have to pay to get my drive fixed? Oh, right... In that future, the future of Longhorn and Palladium (ugh), I'll be solely dependant on *Slackware Linux*.
Speaking of Longhorn...
Upon making this laptop from which I am typing this blog so fresh and so clean clean, I've decided to keep quite a few applications off the hard drive, and on web servers. What I mean by this is that I use web applications in place of their client side brothers. For e-mail, I use Horde, the best e-mail client... EVAR! And for instant messaging I'm going to try and stay committed to using ICQ Go and AIM Express clients. The way I see it, many applications will move in this direction in the future.
-Wherever you are, you can access the same applications with your data stored server-side. Of course strong authentication measures would be necessary, but I see the industry moving in that direction anyway. You wanna try and brute force an eye or fingerprint scan?
-Software companies can easily enforce subscriptions, and know their users are actually paying to use their software. Hey, we knew it would have to happen eventually, right?
Anyone can afford a terminal with minimal processing power on its own. All joe-user needs to buy is a nice big screen and the bare essentials. Have all the services run on super-computers that spawn from the latest booming university trend to build them cheaply (what, you haven't heard of Virginia Tech's Apple G5 Supercomputer? It was only the cheapest fast supercomputer of ALL TIME or something... no big deal...)
What does this have to do with Longhorn? According to some mockup videos I saw on microsoft.com a while ago (can't seem to find a link) Longhorn aims to eliminate the server.
Oh wait, they intend to eliminate the personal server now that I think about it. They want tasks that a small server would do to be done by a very powerful personal computer. Well they have to keep the families of AMD and Intel employees eating, right?
But joe-user of the future doesn't want to pay an assload for a computer he doesn't need. Common non-geek should not get used to shelling out so much for a PC. They need nothing more than a terminal.
And Microsoft Word.
Saw The Day After Tomorrow today. Enjoyed it. I don't lump it into the cheesy massive destruction blah blah movies. Maybe I would have if it weren't so damned well done. Except for those terrible CGI wolves.
29 May 04 | +Permalink+ | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)