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Tag: Consumer

Cash for Clunkers for your Computer?

Posted by J Powers at 10:12 AM on August 28, 2009

A couple weeks ago I changed out my computer to a new Quad Core machine. I won’t go into details because I talked about it in a previous post called Changing out to a new computer. Nonetheless, I have been impressed with the new functionality and possible energy savings that I am getting. It does get me to wondering – should your computer be part of this “Cash for Clunkers” program?

The US did a C4C on automobiles that ended last week. Now the government is talking about allowing you rebates to change out appliances. Your refridgerator, washer, dryer and even heating – A/C units could be affected to rebates. Run on a slightly different system, you buy the appliance, then send in paperwork for the rebate. Disposal – I would guess – is your responsability.

I started thinking about the computer; It’s been sometimes referred to as an appliance. The old P166 takes a lot of power to run. Therefore, should a personal computer be a C4C?

The new machine I got was an AMD Phenom II – a Quad core machine. The Motherboard touts 140 Watt usage. Add hard drives and other items, you would want a power supply of about 450 Watts, even though usage may never take you to that amount of power. If I was to run 4 machines with that same power, they would hit about200-300 Watts each – depending on what I have installed in them. Then we have the heat factor: Let’s just say I might as well paint the wall blue and fill the room with sand because that room will be as warm as a Island day.

I have replaced 3 computers with 1. The power consumption is going to be a lot lower than before. I turn off my machines, but I know that a lot of people leave their machines running and hope that power save mode kicks in. Still, I like the idea of consolodating the machines down and saving power. By the way – I still have 2 other machines I use.

I have an old Apple G4. This machine has the PowerPC chip inside. When Apple moved to Intel, they touted that power and heat issues were part of the reasons why. Therefore, if you use a PowerPC G5 or Dual G5 to run your business, you might be really paying for a new machine just to keep that current computer running.

While we probably wont see a program for computers, you might want to consider upgrading that old machine in the basement. You might find that within a couple years that computer will pay for itself.And yes, the CRT should be replaced, too. You can find a 15″ or 17″ flat panel for as low as $30-$50 if you don’t want to buy new. I just bought a 15″ LCD monitor a few weeks ago at a garage sale for $5.

Athlon 64 Netbooks enter market – Could a $100 machine become possible?

Posted by J Powers at 8:42 AM on June 24, 2009
  • gateway_netbook3.04 lbs
  • 1.03 inches thick
  • single-core CPU¬† @ 1.2 GHz, with 800 MHz FSB & 512 KB L2 Cache
  • 2 GB of DDR2
  • ATI Radeon X1270 graphics
  • AMD RS690E chipset
  • 250 GB hard drive
  • 802.11b/g
  • 11.6-inch high-def WXGA Ultrabrite LED-backlit display
  • 3 x USB 2.0, multi-card reader,
  • high-def audio support, a mic & audio out
  • 0.3 mp webcam.
  • Windows Vista

This is the Gateway LT3103u – a new netbook containing the AMD Athlon 64 L110 chipset. The price? Well, this one is $400. But if they can make an Athlon 64 Netbook for $400, what can they do with a mobile Turion?

Can you say $100 netbook?

Last week I listened to Dr. Michio Kaku talk about “Disposable Computers”. The data will be in the cloud, the computer will be a facet to get to it. It won’t be totally disposable, but the idea is you will not continue to use the same machine to get to your information.

In order to get to that state, we need machines that are not only deemed “Disposable”, but also safe to dispose of.

Still, the first step is to create low cost machine. A netbook is a low cost machine. More compact and easier to use in some ways. Heck, I wished I had one on the flight to Vegas last week. I sat trying to use my laptop with the 13″ screen. You would have laughed at how I was positioned to use it.

The guy next to me had an iPod and a guy across the aisle from me had a DVD player to watch movies. The person in front of us had a netbook. They were working on a project – but they were working more comfortably.

So what would we need to get to a $100 Netbook? Well, first and formost, technology must have low overhead. A $100 machine should cost less than a $100 to make.

According to Business Week, an Apple iPhone 3GS costs $180 to make. It’s predecessor – when it came out – was averaged to cost $220. Next years model could cost $140. Within 5 years we could see Apple iPhones at $99 simply because the phone costs less than $80 to build.

Apply that ideal to a netbook.

AMD says they are not entering into the Netbook market, but wanted to give a “High End” solution for netbooks. I am sorry AMD, but you can’t really say “We are not in the netbook market – by the way, here is a netbook”. Besides, if you don’t embrace the technology, someone else will find an alternative and you could be left to explain to investors why you didn’t take the opportunity.

Do we have $100 Netbooks already?

A couple months ago, we heard about Freescale semiconductors efforts to use an ARM chip and Google Android to make a $100 netbook. Great for surfing, video and small tasks. Yet, it’s not a netbook; It is a Smartbook.

Functionality of a notebook – portability of a netbook. Add to it a price that can’t be beat. That is what we want.

Wait, no. Add to it the fact that a netbook can now be FASTER than the notebook I currently own for a lesser price than I paid. Yet that is the Technology way, right?

Dear AMD: Make a low cost netbook. Thanks.

Post Zune Booth Visit Commentary from CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 4:09 PM on February 3, 2007

The folks at the Zune booth at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show would not go on the record. In fact I think the guy I talked to was aware of some of my previous commentary and was not happy about it.

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My Veoh Show

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Sony Ultra Flat Screen ProtoTypes at 2007 CES

Posted by geeknews at 3:41 PM on February 3, 2007

Sony had some Prototype Ultra Flat screens at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show that were simply amazing

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iLive Entertainment System at CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 3:25 PM on February 3, 2007

iLive Introduces new Entertainment System at the 2007 Consumer Electronics Shwo

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iLive Entertainment System

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D-Box Ultimate Gamers Chair at CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 3:04 PM on February 3, 2007

D-Box had a cool gaming chair at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show wait till you see the ride these gamers get

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D-Box Matering Motion

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Sandio Introduces Killer Gaming Mouse at CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 2:50 PM on February 3, 2007

Sandio has a really cool gaming mouse introduced at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show with capability to use it in Second Life

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Sandio Gaming Mouse

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Belkin Introduces Wireless USB Dongles at CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 2:40 PM on February 3, 2007

Belkin introduces some new Wireless USB Dongles at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show.

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Smarter.com Interview at CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 2:03 PM on February 3, 2007

Smarter.com Interview at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show save money with Smarter.com

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Bart 1 Products Product Demo CES 2007

Posted by geeknews at 1:43 PM on February 3, 2007

Bart 1 Products Keyboard cleaner at the 2007 Consumer Electronics show.

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