0

I've had a Vista machine for almost a year, and it has been a more stable experience for me than XP, sneekula.

EDIT: no, I have not tweaked it in anyway.

-1

My main complaint is all of the costs of changing to a new operating system:

- Upgrading costs money.

- Most real-time software (such as music studio software) usually doesn't work on the new OS, causing the user who has such software to wait a two-year development time to get new software that works on the new OS. This really hampers laboratory work.

- Colleges have to replace their computer curriculum (no small cost).

- The military needs a stable base for software, not upgrade mania.

- NASA is still using 80386 computers and MS-DOS in the Space Shuttles. Reliability requires that they not change anything.

- Long -term scientific studies are often ruined because, the scientists can't prove that the change in OS didn't change anything in the study.

- Too many businessmen don't understand the above limitations, and order all of their employees to upgrade the instant the new software comes out.

We need two things:

- A law requiring software companies to support products for 20 years, so companies develop new products less often.

- Compulsory licensing for all copyrights, not just sheet music and stage plays. That way, anyone who needs the old versions can get them. The monopoly power must be removed.

I wish they had broken Microsoft up into baby Bills back in the 1990s.

Votes + Comments
what a stupid bitch..
0

I've had a Vista machine for almost a year, and it has been a more stable experience for me than XP, sneekula.

EDIT: no, I have not tweaked it in anyway.

Yes. vista is very stable and secure but its icompatibilities and bloatedness is what drives me so mad

0

- A law requiring software companies to support products for 20 years, so scientists can do long-term studies without having the platform yanked out from under them by greedy companies. (and so companies develop new products less often)

No. It's too costly for any company. You'd drive them out of business, and then you'd still not get support. A basic idea in software is "he who releases last, probably has the better product". So slowing down the release cycle just ain't gonna happen, or at least, not by much. And 20 years takes software back to the [relative] stone age. We've only had consumer OSs running time-sliced applications for 1/2 that long already. Besides, after 5 years, if a program still has a bug, odds of it getting fixed are pretty low. Either your research should already have a work-around, or you've been blocked and you can upgrade to something that works better before you start.

- Compulsory licensing for all copyrights, not just sheet music and stage plays.

Everything is implicitly copyrighted once it's created. Stating it on a website, in source code, etc... is redundant but still done to ensure that anyone looking at it realizes that they can't just copy it.

0

A well timed edit, so I'll come back to the first half of Midi's post:

My main complaint is all of the costs of changing to a new operating system:

- Upgrading costs money.

- Most real-time software (such as music studio software) usually doesn't work on the new OS, causing the user who has such software to wait a two-year development time to get new software that works on the new OS. This really hampers laboratory work.

Ok, yeah, upgrading costs money. It's how the companies stay in business. If your software is incompatible or unaffordable, keep your existing system until the upgrade is feasible. That's why many companies have staggered support cycles. If it's still infeasible when it's phased out, odds of anything else getting fixed are slim to none anyways.

- Colleges have to replace their computer curriculum (no small cost).

I disagree. Even in the computer science program I attended, the curriculum was very loosely bound to the technologies used. Even then, most of the software was donated or really cheap. I could understand the costs being higher for a curriculum focused more on programming in specific languages, but the industry moves fast so keeping the curriculum up to date should be an expected cost.

- The military needs a stable base for software, not upgrade mania.

True. The military has a large budget too. And they really really care about having their data secure. Upgrading is probably worthwhile.

- NASA is still using 80386 computers and MS-DOS in the Space Shuttles. Reliability requires that they not change anything.

The shuttles are 20 years old or so, aren't they? I'm guessing if they had a new shuttle that it would use something newer and probably have a better plan for upgrading. We've since learned that 640k isn't enough for everybody.

- Long -term scientific studies are often ruined because, the scientists can't prove that the change in OS didn't change anything in the study.

Addressed in my previous post.

- Too many businessmen don't understand the above limitations, and order all of their employees to upgrade the instant the new software comes out.

Just plain wrong. One of the issues with issuing security updates is that IT departments take so long deploying them that there's a fairly large window wherein the patches can be reverse engineered and exploits written against the faulty code. It's bad enough that there's nigh an art form of releasing patches so that they're obfuscated enough to make it difficult to reverse engineer.

0

No. It's too costly for any company. You'd drive them out of business, and then you'd still not get support. A basic idea in software is "he who releases last, probably has the better product". So slowing down the release cycle just ain't gonna happen, or at least, not by much. And 20 years takes software back to the [relative] stone age. We've only had consumer OSs running time-sliced applications for 1/2 that long already. Besides, after 5 years, if a program still has a bug, odds of it getting fixed are pretty low. Either your research should already have a work-around, or you've been blocked and you can upgrade to something that works better before you start.

Windows NT4 and 95 still powers a huge percentage of UK business pcs, and thats over 10 years old.

A 10 year release cycle is feasible.

Most UK telecomms and Defence networks run unix versions of 20+ years old

0

NT7 is due very soon - 2009-2012 is the timeframe - vista will have a short release cycle

I am looking forward for NT7.

0

Windows NT4 and 95 still powers a huge percentage of UK business pcs, and thats over 10 years old.

A 10 year release cycle is feasible.

Most UK telecomms and Defence networks run unix versions of 20+ years old

Yes, but those NT4 systems and Win95 systems are as close to stabilized as they'll get, and the consumer is [apparently] satisfied. No more need for official support. That's my point: legally forcing a company to maintain servicing resources for somthing that old is too costly. Microsoft already supports Vista, XP, and 2000 SP4. Adding Windows NT and Win9x adds the additional costs of both simply retaining existing resources, plus training for anybody who joins the team. It's not like the employees familiar with the source code necessarily stick around that long. Heck, 5 years on the same team at Microsoft is a rarity.

0

Yes, but those NT4 systems and Win95 systems are as close to stabilized as they'll get, and the consumer is [apparently] satisfied. No more need for official support. That's my point: legally forcing a company to maintain servicing resources for somthing that old is too costly.

So you support requiring businesses and consumers to continuously pay for the upgrades instead? I would rather it cost Microsoft more, rather than costing the rest of us.

The idea of the requirements is to keep old versions COMPATIBLE, and to keep Microsoft and other companies from rushing out new versions every 3 years.

It means that you don't have to upgrade before you can buy new software you need.

Microsoft already supports Vista, XP, and 2000 SP4. Adding Windows NT and Win9x adds the additional costs of both simply retaining existing resources, plus training for anybody who joins the team.

GOOD!!!!

That means there will be fewer versions released! Maybe one every TEN years, instead of the mad 3-year rush they have now.

I'm thinking of protecting the consumer, not Microsoft.

It's not like the employees familiar with the source code necessarily stick around that long. Heck, 5 years on the same team at Microsoft is a rarity.

They get fired that often? Or do they burn out quick like CFLs on a security motion detector fixture?

What do you do when the ISP won't let the older versions of Windows on their systems?

How do you get a new piece of software for you old computer?

This forced upgrading to be able to get support is a greedy form of blackmail.

If I had my way, it would be illegal for a manufacturer to change the operating system. It would be a fixed standard, which is necessary for scientific research. The only upgrades allowed would be for bug fixes and security flaw fixes.

0

No. It's too costly for any company. You'd drive them out of business, and then you'd still not get support. A basic idea in software is "he who releases last, probably has the better product". So slowing down the release cycle just ain't gonna happen, or at least, not by much.

So instead, you want scientific research to be hampered, and consumers to be blackmailed into paying for the same product again and again. IT'S WRONG! You don't seem to see that it bilks consumers out of their money.

Do you work for a software manufacturer. If so, shame on you!

In my opinion, the best software is software I can count on to be THE SAME for many years. I DON'T want to buy from the clown who has to rush out a new version every few years. I need LONG TERM stability and sameness.

And 20 years takes software back to the [relative] stone age.

The law could not be ex-post facto. That's unconstitutional. It would have to start with the current version.

But what about those of us who need old systems?

We've only had consumer OSs running time-sliced applications for 1/2 that long already.

Which means we could again get the ones that do not timeslice. It messes up scientific research when the OS is taking its slice for mousekeeping when the critical event occurs.

Besides, after 5 years, if a program still has a bug, odds of it getting fixed are pretty low.

Not if we get this law.

1. The bug fix would be mandatory under this law.

2. The version 5 years old would still likely be the current version.

My entire point is I want stuff to last longer than 3 years!!!!!

Durable goods are supposed to last more than 3 years. The only thing that makes the software no good after 3 years is that the company produced a new version of the software, and is doing things to make the old version stop working. It's a form of fraud.

I am totally sick of this pay and pay again GREED of software vendors. It is WRONG to bilk consumers this way. Those who want such a greedy system belong in JAIL, for bilking people out of money.

Either your research should already have a work-around, or you've been blocked and you can upgrade to something that works better before you start.

But by the time my 20-year study is over, I probably will not have any working hardware left to be able to use the research software and hardware, because some clown has to change the standards to sell more products.

They are still using 80386 computers on the Space Shuttle, because any change would impair the safety of the ships.

Why should we be required to upgrade? So you can have more bells and whistles??? It's GREED - Businesses make more money forcing us to change to keep the capabilities we already paid for. I want some consumer protection against this garbage.

Forcing people to pay more to keep what they already bought is WRONG!!! It's a toll or a kickback. I see it as FRAUD.

HDTV is wrong too, for the same reason. We don't need more resolution in TV. But because some crybabys want it, everyone in the US is being forced by government to pay more to keep what they already had. Even worse, instead of protecting consumers from such fraud, government is behind it.

If I pay more than 100 dollars for ANYTHING, I expect to be able to use it for at least TEN YEARS. Under your stupid rules, NO software is worth the money paid for it, because it depreciates too fast.

Everything is implicitly copyrighted once it's created. Stating it on a website, in source code, etc... is redundant but still done to ensure that anyone looking at it realizes that they can't just copy it.

You are misunderstanding compulsory licensing.

The purpose of compulsory licensing is to allow people who need to use products to copy them for a small fee, without having to get permission from the copyright owner.

It currently exists in two areas of copyrighted materials:

- Sheet music - Anyone who purchases sheet music can use the piece to do a public performance, or to make a sound recording or video recording of his own performances, on payment of a small per-copy mechanical royalty. The owner of the copyright has no right to prevent such uses, provided the royalty is paid.

- Stage plays - Anyone who purchases a script for a stage play has the right to perform the play on payment of the small royalty. Again, the owner of the copyright has no right to prevent the use, provided the royalty is paid.

I would extend this to ALL copyrights. Anyone who needs a copy of old software could obtain it by copying it and paying a small mechanical royalty.

0

So you support requiring businesses and consumers to continuously pay for the upgrades instead? I would rather it cost Microsoft more, rather than costing the rest of us.

That's because you obviously care little for them staying in business. I, on the other hand, care a great deal :icon_wink:

The idea of the requirements is to keep old versions COMPATIBLE, and to keep Microsoft and other companies from rushing out new versions every 3 years.

Admittedly, Vista does break a bunch of compatibility. But the reasons for that were mostly well founded for the good of the average consumer, not for the unlikely case that you're stuck on a very old system. And, since XP is still supported, we still cover 7+ years of compatibility.

It means that you don't have to upgrade before you can buy new software you need.

There's a couple problems I have with this, and to try and stem this in a new direction, I'll bring up hardware. The stuff flipping bits has changed dramatically in the last decade. Going from the x86 and x87 to now having SSE4 brings some dramatic performance differences. Going the opposite direction, however, there are some operations which are no longer supported because they've been superseded by better alternatives. These architectural changes mean that you'll need to update your software, particularly the OS. Or maybe you'd rather hamper this industry for the sake of your experiments that, frankly, everyone else seems to pull off adequately?

That means there will be fewer versions released! Maybe one every TEN years, instead of the mad 3-year rush they have now.

What's wrong with a quicker turn-over? If it was a 10 year investment, you can certainly bet that the operating system would cost more than a couple hundred bucks. And then, you'd most certainly have completely incompatible systems, and it would be like Y2K every time a new version came out. With the 3 year plan, they can usually mitigate that by having incremental changes.

I'm thinking of protecting the consumer, not Microsoft.

From your perspective maybe it appears this way. However, I disagree. I doubt we'll come to an agreement.

They get fired that often? Or do they burn out quick like CFLs on a security motion detector fixture?

No, 5 years working on the exact same code over and over is bound to wear most people out. At least, most people who are looking for new challenges and problems to solve. There's a ton of internal transfers, people moving from one product to one they think is more interesting or to a different role.

What do you do when the ISP won't let the older versions of Windows on their systems?

First, I wonder at their reasons. Then I either upgrade if it makes sense or I find a different ISP. Why would an ISP care though?

How do you get a new piece of software for you old computer?

Same place I get it for my new computer. I just manage to keep my computers relatively up to date.

This forced upgrading to be able to get support is a greedy form of blackmail.

So is a 8-year warranty on a car that lasts 15 years. Oh, wait, that's called managing business expenses.

If I had my way, it would be illegal for a manufacturer to change the operating system. It would be a fixed standard, which is necessary for scientific research. The only upgrades allowed would be for bug fixes and security flaw fixes.

If I had my way, you would realize that scientific research gets by just fine as it is. I doubt most researchers have a desktop version of Windows running their projects anyways. Likely, if they're so constrained, they'll have a specialized set of hardware and a kernel to go with it. You seem to be so concerned about having to adjust anything that you're wanting to freeze the progress of an industry upon which so many other industries now depend.

0

A well timed edit, so I'll come back to the first half of Midi's post:

Ok, yeah, upgrading costs money. It's how the companies stay in business. If your software is incompatible or unaffordable, keep your existing system until the upgrade is feasible. That's why many companies have staggered support cycles. If it's still infeasible when it's phased out, odds of anything else getting fixed are slim to none anyways.

This is a huge consumer BILK!!! It should be illegal to bilk consumers this way.

When I buy a good, that costs over 100 dollars, I expect it to work for at least ten years. Not three!

Imagine if GM required us to replace our cars every three years, so they could stay in business. There would be congressional investigations.

If a software company can't stay in business without this form of bilkage, it deserves to die.

I hear so many claims of "corporate greed" that are false. But this is the real thing.

I could understand the costs being higher for a curriculum focused more on programming in specific languages, but the industry moves fast so keeping the curriculum up to date should be an expected cost.

And who pays this cost so the software manufactures can greed more money out of us? Taxpayers and students.

True. The military has a large budget too. And they really really care about having their data secure. Upgrading is probably worthwhile.

No. Preventing major upgrades would be more secure, and would save taxpayers money.

The shuttles are 20 years old or so, aren't they? I'm guessing if they had a new shuttle that it would use something newer and probably have a better plan for upgrading.

Where life safety is a requirement, such as in space shuttles, air traffic control, military uses, and hospital devices, the necessary safety and reliability testing takes longer than the greedy upgrade cycle of Microsoft and its greedy cronies. By the time the testing is done and the device is ready for release, the software that was tested is already discontinued.

We've since learned that 640k isn't enough for everybody.

WRONG. We need more than 640 K only because Microsoft biggered the Windows operating system so much that it won't fit.

Most of the files I use still fit on a 1.44 M floppy. It's Windows that bloated so big that computers had to get bigger.

And the 386 ran 16 MB, not 640 K. The 8086 ran 640 K.

Just plain wrong. One of the issues with issuing security updates is that IT departments take so long deploying them that there's a fairly large window wherein the patches can be reverse engineered and exploits written against the faulty code. It's bad enough that there's nigh an art form of releasing patches so that they're obfuscated enough to make it difficult to reverse engineer.

You couldn't get into MS-DOS without infecting a floppy disk or a downloadable executable.

If the operating system weren't made so Microsoft and other software could affect it from outside, and if it were made so that nobody could operate the console remotely, there would BE no security holes. The fact that Microsoft wanted to make advertisers happy by allowing ads to download crap to your computer makes the holes.

And if they didn't redo things every three years, they would have all of the holes plugged.

0

So instead, you want scientific research to be hampered, and consumers to be blackmailed into paying for the same product again and again. IT'S WRONG! You don't seem to see that it bilks consumers out of their money.

Do you work for a software manufacturer. If so, shame on you!

If you don't like our software, don't use it. Put your money, or research if you're lacking the money, where your mouth is.

In my opinion, the best software is software I can count on to be THE SAME for many years. I DON'T want to buy from the clown who has to rush out a new version every few years. I need LONG TERM stability and sameness.

That's fine. You're a 1-in-1,000,000,000 user, most likely. I'm quite blessed to have come across someone with your needs. Personally, I like getting new software.

The law could not be ex-post facto. That's unconstitutional. It would have to start with the current version.

My point was simply that, given how much computers have changed in the past decade, much less two decades, requiring a company to maintain something that long is ludicrous. You'll end up with no software companies because they can't afford to stay in business. And then you've completely shut down progress in multiple industries.

But what about those of us who need old systems?

You already have your old system. Enjoy.

Which means we could again get the ones that do not timeslice. It messes up scientific research when the OS is taking its slice for mousekeeping when the critical event occurs.

Couple problems with this: 1) anything that doesn't time-slice won't have a mouse. If you're not slicing, you won't do well with any sort of interrupt, as you'll basically be running a single-threaded system. 2) Even assuming you could run your interrupts somehow (which includes things like a timer), odds are that you're not moving the mouse often; if you are, it needs to interfere anyways, which contradicts what you've already said. 3) if your research is so sensitive that it can't spare a couple microseconds, you probably shouldn't have a mouse on the computer at all. Too many ways to screw up your results.

Not if we get this law.

1. The bug fix would be mandatory under this law.

2. The version 5 years old would still likely be the current version.

My entire point is I want stuff to last longer than 3 years!!!!!

Durable goods are supposed to last more than 3 years. The only thing that makes the software no good after 3 years is that the company produced a new version of the software, and is doing things to make the old version stop working. It's a form of fraud.

New cars come out every year. That's also a fraud, by your definition, if not more of one. And while they're still compatible with the roads, you can't use them at the same time as your other car. You either buy a new one to replace your old one, or you buy a new one to keep alongside your old one and use just one at a time, or you keep your old one and wish you had a new one. Same with your software.

I am totally sick of this pay and pay again GREED of software vendors. It is WRONG to bilk consumers this way. Those who want such a greedy system belong in JAIL, for bilking people out of money.

Seriously, have you ever thought about why businesses exist?

But by the time my 20-year study is over, I probably will not have any working hardware left to be able to use the research software and hardware, because some clown has to change the standards to sell more products.

Here's what you can do:
1. Finish your experiments
2. Publish them using your new computer that you've saved 20 years for
3. ???
4. Profit!!

Seriously, if your research is still relevant at all, then it won't be a waste. And then you can update for your next project.

They are still using 80386 computers on the Space Shuttle, because any change would impair the safety of the ships.

Yes, so why can't you still live happily with your old stuff? I want my new stuff, dammit.

Why should we be required to upgrade? So you can have more bells and whistles??? It's GREED - Businesses make more money forcing us to change to keep the capabilities we already paid for. I want some consumer protection against this garbage.

You aren't required. That's illegal. It's a choice that an awful lot of people agree on, but there's still some people who don't have/want a computer.

HDTV is wrong too, for the same reason. We don't need more resolution in TV. But because some crybabys want it, everyone in the US is being forced by government to pay more to keep what they already had. Even worse, instead of protecting consumers from such fraud, government is behind it.

While I wouldn't call it fraud per se, I do agree that this change is somewhat dubious in necessity.

If I pay more than 100 dollars for ANYTHING, I expect to be able to use it for at least TEN YEARS. Under your stupid rules, NO software is worth the money paid for it, because it depreciates too fast.

LOL!! I've spent $100 on a meal (ok, it was for a two people) and that certainly didn't last me 10 years. Maybe 10 hours. Your argument about depreciation carries no weight though. It will [almost always] still work on the system it was designed for. This "depreciation" you're claiming is simply that other people are placing higher value on new software. Software certainly shouldn't be used as an investment vehicle, are you expecting to get a decent return on your purchase?

You are misunderstanding compulsory licensing.

The purpose of compulsory licensing is to allow people who need to use products to copy them for a small fee, without having to get permission from the copyright owner.
...
I would extend this to ALL copyrights. Anyone who needs a copy of old software could obtain it by copying it and paying a small mechanical royalty.

We have a system similar to that, except it's better. If you want to use a software, you pay a fee for it, or sometimes you can get it for free if the creator so chooses. Then after so many years, you can get the old software for free! And unlike the copyright on a story or on music, the expiration is set to a certain constant time, not dependent on how long the creator lives.

0

This is a huge consumer BILK!!! It should be illegal to bilk consumers this way.

The consumers are the ones choosing to spend the money. Blame them.

Imagine if GM required us to replace our cars every three years, so they could stay in business. There would be congressional investigations.

Aside from the fact that you're completely ignoring that the upgrade is optional, GM would be overjoyed for people to upgrade their vehicles every 3 years. Some people do.

And who pays this cost so the software manufactures can greed more money out of us? Taxpayers and students.

Hm, strange, I seem to recall that our computer labs were donated and that we got free copies of the software we used. Maybe I mis-remembered; it's been a year, afterall.

No. Preventing major upgrades would be more secure, and would save taxpayers money.

Huh??? Lets see, Windows XP had some major security holes (as did every version preceding it). If we don't have major upgrades to fix these, it's going to stay more secure? I'm not getting your logic. As to the costs, however, the government has plenty of other ways to spend our money (as unfortunate as that is). But yes, it would be nice to not have to spend so much.


WRONG. We need more than 640 K only because Microsoft biggered the Windows operating system so much that it won't fit.

HAHAHAHA! Good god, man what files are you working with? You're certainly not going to fit a video file in memory with that. You could maybe load one frame at a time, and it would be like a slideshow...

Most of the files I use still fit on a 1.44 M floppy. It's Windows that bloated so big that computers had to get bigger.

Individually, a lot of my files would too. Well, except for some the ones that are 15,000+ lines long. I don't really want a disk for each file when there's several hundred that all go together.

You couldn't get into MS-DOS without infecting a floppy disk or a downloadable executable.

If the operating system weren't made so Microsoft and other software could affect it from outside, and if it were made so that nobody could operate the console remotely, there would BE no security holes. The fact that Microsoft wanted to make advertisers happy by allowing ads to download crap to your computer makes the holes.

And if they didn't redo things every three years, they would have all of the holes plugged.

Um, security issues are much more than ad-ware. There's a ton of exploits against various standardized network protocols. You know, the ones that have been around for 10 years or more. Oh, hey, I just thought of how I could fix your security issues though! I'll share it with you because I'm so nice. Just unplug your network cable!

0

The consumers are the ones choosing to spend the money. Blame them.

Most of them spend the money because they can't keep using the internet, or some ISP or university system, without the upgrade.

Aside from the fact that you're completely ignoring that the upgrade is optional, GM would be overjoyed for people to upgrade their vehicles every 3 years. Some people do.

It is not optional if your ISP says you must upgrade or lose your account.

It is not optional if your boss says "upgrade so your home computer matches the business ones. or be fired." Never mind that you can't afford the $1000 every three years for an upgrade of Windows, Office, and several other pricey packages.

It is not optional if you are unemployed and want to be hired by companies that require experience in the latest versions. And you don't have the $1000 or so, because you are unemployed.

It's corporate geed at the max.

Hm, strange, I seem to recall that our computer labs were donated and that we got free copies of the software we used. Maybe I mis-remembered; it's been a year, afterall.

Big universities get donations. Little community colleges don't.

Huh??? Lets see, Windows XP had some major security holes (as did every version preceding it). If we don't have major upgrades to fix these, it's going to stay more secure? I'm not getting your logic. As to the costs, however, the government has plenty of other ways to spend our money (as unfortunate as that is). But yes, it would be nice to not have to spend so much.

If we don't have big upgrades to change everything so it is not compatible wit the old stuff, we could fix the bugs a lot easier.

HAHAHAHA! Good god, man what files are you working with? You're certainly not going to fit a video file in memory with that. You could maybe load one frame at a time, and it would be like a slideshow...


I don't need video files. They are toys.

I use word processing documents, spreadsheets, small Access files, line drawings, and MIDI files, in addition to custom scientific data collection and process control software.

Individually, a lot of my files would too. Well, except for some the ones that are 15,000+ lines long. I don't really want a disk for each file when there's several hundred that all go together.

I use CDRs mostly, plus a USB drive. But I still use floppies to transfer to and from the DOS computer with the scientific process control system without the timeslice troubles of Windows.

Um, security issues are much more than ad-ware. There's a ton of exploits against various standardized network protocols. You know, the ones that have been around for 10 years or more. Oh, hey, I just thought of how I could fix your security issues though! I'll share it with you because I'm so nice. Just unplug your network cable!

Most of those security issues were created because someone wanted a form of remote control of a computer, or didn't want the "are you sure" message for each file being downloaded. Adware is just one form, but the capability to have adware is a big hole.

The security hole I am afraid of most is the automatic Windows upgrade system. I am just waiting for the time that someone fakes an upgrade and kills millions of computers.

0

Ah, this thread is so much fun :)

Most of them spend the money because they can't keep using the internet, or some ISP or university system, without the upgrade.

We hang out around different consumers then. Then ones I know get a new one because they're dissatisfied with their old one and they see that the new ones run better. It's going back to the later release is usually better rule.

It is not optional if your ISP says you must upgrade or lose your account.

It is not optional if your boss says "upgrade so your home computer matches the business ones. or be fired." Never mind that you can't afford the $1000 every three years for an upgrade of Windows, Office, and several other pricey packages.

It is not optional if you are unemployed and want to be hired by companies that require experience in the latest versions. And you don't have the $1000 or so, because you are unemployed.

It's corporate geed at the max.

Linux wasn't supported by my ISP when I set up my connection. Oops. As to the boss situation, $1000 over 3 years to get a paycheck seems like a small price; however, I can see how that would be annoying at best. If your boss demands that, then find a new one. And if they want you to set up your home machines like the work machines, what's the point of going to work? Or going home? If your employer controls you that much, find a new job.

If we don't have big upgrades to change everything so it is not compatible wit the old stuff, we could fix the bugs a lot easier.

Yes, but then you've still halted progress. Have you ever worked on a commercial piece of software? The whole point of a new version is to add new functionality/features in addition to any bug fixes...

I don't need video files. They are toys.

I use word processing documents, spreadsheets, small Access files, line drawings, and MIDI files, in addition to custom scientific data collection and process control software.

Nice. I "need" video files, music files, and the occasional large document.

I use CDRs mostly, plus a USB drive. But I still use floppies to transfer to and from the DOS computer with the scientific process control system without the timeslice troubles of Windows.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if you're copying stuff to and from your DOS computer, you have to stop your research process. So this timeslicing issue doesn't already come into play how? And you can't upgrade why?

Most of those security issues were created because someone wanted a form of remote control of a computer, or didn't want the "are you sure" message for each file being downloaded. Adware is just one form, but the capability to have adware is a big hole.

It's a hole that developed from programmers trying to give a better content experience to their users. The users certainly didn't mind the new features, or else they would have stopped using them.

The security hole I am afraid of most is the automatic Windows upgrade system. I am just waiting for the time that someone fakes an upgrade and kills millions of computers.

It's been done already. Except for the millions of computer deaths.

So, Midi, here's the main question I have for you: you already have a computer running DOS. Presumably, you cannot change this for your research purposes. You also have a newer computer, as evidenced by your participation in this forum. So, since you already have what you want, why do you complain if companies try to sell new products to the rest of the market, who are willing to pay for said products? I don't tell Volkswagen to stop making new cars because mine suits my needs and I want to be able to find parts for it until I get rid of it.

0

At the end of the day there is still consumer choice.
If you don't want Vista then don't buy it. So far as I know there are no laws being passed on the matter.
The sad fact is that there are enough people out there who will buy anything new just because it is there. They want it purely because someone else has it. The industry knows this and play the whole market like the mugs we are.
So when Vista comes out you need to ask yourself "Do I need Vista or is my present system and operating system doing everything I need it to do??". If you need it get it, if you don't then don't.

0

If you don't like our software, don't use it. Put your money, or research if you're lacking the money, where your mouth is.

I can't. You drove all of the software producers that make what I need out of business.

That's fine. You're a 1-in-1,000,000,000 user, most likely. I'm quite blessed to have come across someone with your needs. Personally, I like getting new software.

I like new software too. What I don't like is having to replace half of the software I already PAID FOR to be able to install the new software.

My point was simply that, given how much computers have changed in the past decade, much less two decades, requiring a company to maintain something that long is ludicrous. You'll end up with no software companies because they can't afford to stay in business. And then you've completely shut down progress in multiple industries.


If you made upgrades so they didn't prevent the use of old versions, it would not be a problem. Also, remember that some people can't use timesharing systems. Give us a choice of shutting off the timesharing, so the program has control when the critical event occurs.

You already have your old system. Enjoy.

How do I get replacement parts?

Couple problems with this:

1) anything that doesn't time-slice won't have a mouse. If you're not slicing, you won't do well with any sort of interrupt, as you'll basically be running a single-threaded system.

RIGHT! It's always watching the data ports, instead of doing such unnecessary things.

I have a single-threaded system with a mouse. The mouse goes to sleep during the critical data collection phase. When the computer can do so, it polls the mouse.

2) Even assuming you could run your interrupts somehow (which includes things like a timer), odds are that you're not moving the mouse often; if you are, it needs to interfere anyways, which contradicts what you've already said.

No interrupts at all on this computer, except on the disk drives. The process has absolute priority. Input-output with the user is secondary, being allowed only between experiments. There is one button on the data box to abort a trial if the user needs to take control. Collection is to RAM, and the disk is used to save the data between trials.

The operating system on this computer does not run all the time. It runs only when the program calls it. It shuts off again when the call completes or the program ends. It came that way, which is why we selected it.

3) if your research is so sensitive that it can't spare a couple microseconds, you probably shouldn't have a mouse on the computer at all. Too many ways to screw up your results.[/.quote]

Microseconds??? Windows grabs a 10 MILLIsecond timeslice every 55 milliseconds. It is made for BUSINESS purposes, not high speed science.

Our system has a mouse, but the mouse is polled during the noncritical times, and ignored during critical times.

Do you know the difference between an H reflex and an M reflex, and how to program a computer to tell them apart?

Do you know how to detect the onset of a reflex and start a process within 1 ms.

The problem is that the hardware was bought in 1982. It can't be replaced if it fails (other than an eBay search for another old computer), because all new computers are interrupt driven. Intel computers don't even have the polling ports, so you can't poll instead of using interrupts. So we have old Motorola processors.

At least this basic hardware was available for 12 years uninterrupted (1979 to 1991) with only minor changes and full backward compatibility.

Nobody makes the kind of computers needed for these experiments anymore. So this kind of science will necessarily die when the last of them are gone.

New cars come out every year. That's also a fraud, by your definition, if not more of one. And while they're still compatible with the roads, you can't use them at the same time as your other car. You either buy a new one to replace your old one, or you buy a new one to keep alongside your old one and use just one at a time, or you keep your old one and wish you had a new one. Same with your software.

But they don't replace the roads every three years or so, and then make you buy a different car (like they are replacing television next year). ISPs are banning older versions of Windows, forcing people to upgrade if they want internet access.

And not all new cars have Second Gear Start, which we need here for winter driving. Chrysler never offered it, and GM quit providing it.

What do you do if a government-owned ISP has monopoly status in your area?

Seriously, have you ever thought about why businesses exist?

To make a profit and provide products consumers buy. But they are usually prohibited from extorting the public in the process. And expensive products that self destruct after three years are definitely frowned on by consumer protection laws.

Suppose you buy a power saw. You are told on a certain date that your saw will no longer work in one year. Wouldn't you feel bilked? I would. I feel bilked that my 4-year old TV will quit working next year.

I don't want to prevent a business from making a profit, but I do want to protect consumers from fraudulent business practices.

Here's what you can do:
1. Finish your experiments

I have to wait 8 more years for the subjects to grow up to do that. One study follows the same persons from age 4 to age 24. It's hard enough keeping enough people in the area that long. We started with 500 children, hoping that at least 30 would be left at age 24. They are now 16, and we are down to 212. Many will leave the area in two years to attend colleges in other towns.

They started a similar study in 1983 with 200 subjects. The study ended without being finished in 1991, when the number of subjects still in the area dropped below 30 (no longer statistically significant at 95 percent confidence). They immediately started the current one then.

2. Publish them using your new computer that you've saved 20 years for.


We have XP computers too. The floppy disks transfer the data.

And where does this magic money to keep upgrading come from, on a college budget? I'm lucky they pay for the printer paper (students have to buy their own).

3. ???
4. Profit!! (Profit? in a state college?)

Seriously, if your research is still relevant at all, then it won't be a waste. And then you can update for your next project.

No. because new computers can't do the job. They are interrupt-driven timeslice computers.

We looked at software that claims to do this on Windows computers. It throws out the entire trial if a Windows timeslice gets in the way of the timing.

But you can't change human physiology, and it is almost guaranteed that, with a start synchronized to not be in the Windows timeslice, that either the H reflex or the M reflex WILL be in a Windows timeslice. When that happens, the resistance force will start too late if it waits until the Windows timeslice is over.

The software threw out every trial. We threw out the software.

Yes, so why can't you still live happily with your old stuff? I want my new stuff, dammit.

As long as you getting your new stuff doesn't keep me from buying replacements for the old stuff, and as long as your new stuff doesn't cause my old stuff to lose functionality (such as no longer being allowed on the Internet), I don't mind.

You aren't required. That's illegal. It's a choice that an awful lot of people agree on, but there's still some people who don't have/want a computer.

It should also be illegal to deprecate old equipment and software to make it not work anymore. But Microsoft routinely does that by making new software incompatible with the old.

While I wouldn't call it fraud per se, I do agree that this change is somewhat dubious in necessity.

And Microsoft does this to us every three years.

I don't see the necessity of the three-year upgrades (and requiring people to buy new computers every 6 years to be able to use the new upgrade, because it is too big to fit in the old computer).

LOL!! I've spent $100 on a meal (ok, it was for a two people) and that certainly didn't last me 10 years.

I can't afford to eat at McDonalds on my salary. $100 is 1/12 of my monthly salary, so it is a lot of money to me.

Maybe 10 hours. Your argument about depreciation carries no weight though. It will [almost always] still work on the system it was designed for.

This "depreciation" you're claiming is simply that other people are placing higher value on new software. Software certainly shouldn't be used as an investment vehicle, are you expecting to get a decent return on your purchase?

No, it's because the software I bought before can no longer be used for the purpose I bought it for, because Microsift changed something to make it incompatible. Take Excel 2007. It no longer supports Excel 97 files, and the default file saved won't work on Excel 2003.

Here is another way Microsoft made things difficult by changing things. I bought a wonderful piece of third-party software that runs on Windows 3.1, and saved hundreds of files in its proprietary file format. Then Windows 95 came out, which was unable to run this software. The company spent a huge amount of money making a version for Windows 95. They had it ready by 1997 Then, Microsoft changed things again, and neither program runs on Windows 98. The company went bankrupt making the upgrade to Windows 98. This three-year upgrade cycle was new then (most DOS products were forward compatible into the next DOS version) and it killed a software company that was trying to make long-term products.

Now I have hundreds of irreplaceable files that require Windows 3.1 to be read, and can't be converted to other formats or Windows versions because new versions of the software are not available.

We have a system similar to that, except it's better. If you want to use a software, you pay a fee for it, or sometimes you can get it for free if the creator so chooses.

"IF the creator so chooses." I like compulsory better, because it keeps the creator from effectively removing the old software from the market by preventing sales or copying of used items.

Then after so many years, you can get the old software for free! And unlike the copyright on a story or on music, the expiration is set to a certain constant time, not dependent on how long the creator lives.

95 years later? That's US law.

But what if you need several pieces of software that work together, and only one is free?

0

Here is where the fraud comes in, in a hypothetical example:

Suppose I suddenly need a new program, Blerzal.

Blerzal costs $75. But it runs on only Windows Vista, and requires Excel 2007 to use the data.

So I have to spend hundreds to upgrade to Vista to run Blerzal.

But Windows Vista won't fit in the old computer. So the computer must be replaced.

But now the copy of Microsoft Office 97 doesn't work anymore, because it is not Vista compatible. So now I have to upgrade to Office 2007 to keep Office and use Blerzal.

But before I can upgrade to Office 2007, I have to change all of the Excel and Access files to a format Office 2007 can still read. My Office 97 can't do that, so I first have to buy Office 2003 to convert the files to 2003 format, so I can read them with Office 2007. Then I have to buy Office 2007, so I can use Blerzal.

The only problem is that there are so many Excel 97 files that it takes several man years to convert them all.

Then I have to replace 12 other programs I paid good money for, that won't run on Vista. Three of them can't be replaced, because the companies went out of business. One of them was bought out by Microsoft to eliminate a competitor. One of them was purposely made to not work when Microsoft changed the OS (as they did to Netscape one year). The third went out of business trying to get an upgrade in place in time to work on Vista..

The internet connection has to be set up again, because Outlook 2007 and IE7 can't read the old files.

I can't sell the old computer, because I still need it to use the three programs that I couldn't replace.

So to use a $75 program, it costs several thousand dollars, because incompatibility was purposely built in to make forced sales. That's almost a year's income on my salary.

If I had done the upgrades every so often as Microsoft planned, it still would cost just as much, because the same conversions had to be made. It would just be spread over time.

If there wasn't this mad upgrade rush, I would have paid only $75 to do the same thing.

This is the fraud I mention. I had to pay to get the capabilities I already had, because the old software was made incompatible with the new software. And the licenses for the old software are depreciated because I can no longer use the software.

Anyone who doesn't see these as unnecessary expenses must work for a software company that profits from this fraud.

0

That's because you obviously care little for them staying in business. I, on the other hand, care a great deal :icon_wink:

I wish they had broken Microsoft into baby Bills. Bill Gates is behind the upgrade rush.

Admittedly, Vista does break a bunch of compatibility. But the reasons for that were mostly well founded for the good of the average consumer,

I don't call breaking good software you paid for being "for the good of the average consumer." The buyer of third party (non Microsoft) software is hurt a lot more.

not for the unlikely case that you're stuck on a very old system. And, since XP is still supported, we still cover 7+ years of compatibility.

Nope. We got XP in 2003.

And what about the guy who buys external hardware control software. That has to be replaced EVERY time the Windows version changes.

There's a couple problems I have with this, and to try and stem this in a new direction, I'll bring up hardware. The stuff flipping bits has changed dramatically in the last decade. Going from the x86 and x87 to now having SSE4 brings some dramatic performance differences. Going the opposite direction, however, there are some operations which are no longer supported because they've been superseded by better alternatives. These architectural changes mean that you'll need to update your software, particularly the OS. Or maybe you'd rather hamper this industry for the sake of your experiments that, frankly, everyone else seems to pull off adequately?

Considering that the new systems cannot do this kind of science at all, yes. Or at least keep stuff that can do the job on the market.

It is a LIE that people are able to do this science. They can't without old equipment, or very expensive special controllers. Many colleges have closed these departments because they can't do the work.

The companies making the equipment for this science went out of business, because their stuff won't work with Windows, Mac OS, or any Unix variant. The need no timeslicing to work.

Some scientists are changing their methods, but the results are not nearly as accurate.

What's wrong with a quicker turn-over? If it was a 10 year investment, you can certainly bet that the operating system would cost more than a couple hundred bucks. And then, you'd most certainly have completely incompatible systems, and it would be like Y2K every time a new version came out. With the 3 year plan, they can usually mitigate that by having incremental changes.

And if Microsoft didn't have a monopoly, the software would be a LOT cheaper.

You obviously think everyone is made of money to PAY for the upgrades. You are effectively banning low-income and unemployed people from the Internet (where the job listings are), because they can't afford the upgrades.

You also forget that government is taking 72 percent of the income here.

In addition, there is a solid waste problem from the deprecated computer hardware.

From your perspective maybe it appears this way. However, I disagree. I doubt we'll come to an agreement.

- When an upgrade is going to cost me two months salary, I am going to complain. How am I supposed to eat and pay the mortgage while I pay for the upgrade?

- When upgrading one thing causes me to have to rebuy 14 other software packages that worked until after the upgrade, I am going to complain. That IS wrong.

No, 5 years working on the exact same code over and over is bound to wear most people out.

Ah, CFL burnout. But if the OS never changed, they wouldn't have to keep working on the same code again and again. They could develop new stuff.

That argument makes as much sense ads keeping property taxes because we have to pay tax assessors, and keeping tax assessors because we have property to assess for property tax.

First, I wonder at their reasons.

It's a government computer, and they are doing thumbsucking security because someone broke in and stole Social Security numbers.

Then I either upgrade if it makes sense or I find a different ISP. Why would an ISP care though?

For many years, this ISP had a monopoly over most of the city. It also owned the phones and cable. So everyone was forced to use it. A lawsuit finally ended this.

Same place I get it for my new computer. I just manage to keep my computers relatively up to date.

But you don't seem to see that I have to pay AGAIN for perfectly good software I already paid for, because it won't run on the new OS. That's greed.

I didn't say depreciated, I said deprecated. The software no longer works, because it is not compatible with the new operating system.

So is a 8-year warranty on a car that lasts 15 years. Oh, wait, that's called managing business expenses.

But I can still buy the parts for the car and have it repaired after the warranty ends. And I can sell it to another buyer, and it will work for him. The car doesn't quit working, and is not required to stay off freeways because they came out with new models.

If I had my way, you would realize that scientific research gets by just fine as it is. I doubt most researchers have a desktop version of Windows running their projects anyways. Likely, if they're so constrained, they'll have a specialized set of hardware and a kernel to go with it. You seem to be so concerned about having to adjust anything that you're wanting to freeze the progress of an industry upon which so many other industries now depend.

And you seem to think that you can just throw in any computer and do this kind of research. ALL of the computers able to do this kind of research are discontinued. The hardware timing is critical.

Business users swing the market, leaving nothing left for science. The cost of a custom special controller is about $30K, much beyond our college budget. Most of our technology budget goes to upgrading deprecated classroom computers so we can run the new software.

There are still 6 year old computers in half of the computer labs. Half of that cost is manpower. 80 people are continuously doing nothing but changing out computers and upgrading them at taxpayer expense. And as soon as they finish all of the computers, they have to start over, because Monkeysoft has issued a new upgrade. And we often have to pay to relicense other software when we replace the OS, even though we don't have to download it again.

The big problem is that you expect everyone to be made of money to PAY for all of these upgrades. You are rich, if you can afford $100 dinners. Over 2/3 of the population can't afford to do that.

Try living on $9000 to $12000 a year at a job that requires you to have an updated home computer, but doesn't pay for it.

I see nothing but a monopoly-enabled greed.

0

To me Vista has more ugly surprises than those flashy cute ones. So, I will try to keep my XP machine as long as I can.

Hopefully, Microsoft wakes up and brings out a nice robust replacement OS for XP in a few years. Of course, right now it seems MS is more interested in gaming than OSing.

0

Too lazy to reply to all of these, so maybe I have a quick productive post...

No, it's because the software I bought before can no longer be used for the purpose I bought it for, because Microsift changed something to make it incompatible. Take Excel 2007. It no longer supports Excel 97 files, and the default file saved won't work on Excel 2003.

One of the developers on Office had a blog post about them disabling a lot of old formats that aren't used anymore. He also provided some ways to re-enable them via the registry. Blog post is here. It's not that they dropped support, it's that there were too many security holes in the formats that most consumers are better protected by disabling the format.

0

I use the free Open Office package from Sun and can use all my old Excel files (password protected ones too).

0

I can't see how a data format can have a security hole in it, unless code can be embedded in data files.

0

I can't see how a data format can have a security hole in it, unless code can be embedded in data files.

Right, which is why there's so many code execution exploits based on them...

0

First I want to say this is officially the longest thread I have ever started anywhere! =)

Secondly I just wanted to add that I just read in an article on Vista's bloat-ware status, these numbers are from the article and I have not verified them:

XP = 1.5Gig on your hard drive.

Vista = 15Gig on your hard drive.

I saw that and about, well I don't want to say what almost happened but it wasn't good.

Please somebody explain to me what you get for another 13.5Gig, really!

What could possibly be in there that would consume that much space?

Bunch of high def videos?

This topic has been dead for over six months. Start a new discussion instead.
Have something to contribute to this discussion? Please be thoughtful, detailed and courteous, and be sure to adhere to our posting rules.