How old is your machine?



  • Waiting on a new PC for work here... currently running a mid spec laptop (since we occasionally visit clients and in the past we actually had to lug a desktop PC on site if we needed our own machine...) which practically pre-dates the dawn of man

    Basically - it's over 6 years old and I have to wait 5 hours for it to do anything. It was not bad 6 years ago when we got it and I was running visual studio 2005/2008

    Now I'm running VS2010 and a couple of versions of SQL (since some clients are still on SQL2005/2008 etc) and I'm also expected to work on Dynamics NAV, in which a standard client DB is in the tens of gigabytes (oh yeah and don't expect us to actually have a dev server - oh we do, but we don't have any sort of access to it apart from remote SQL access... so we can't actually install anything..)

    We're also still waiting on a source control system ... well we have Visual SourceSafe 2005 if you can call that source control.

    Actually been waiting for this laptop for... about 2 years now 

    Anyone else in the same boat?




  • Something similar in my workplace. The desktops are all fairly new and shiny and do what they should. But god help you if ever need to use one of the battered old laptops!

    I guess since they have no permanent owner they have no one yelling for an upgrade, or at least not often enough.



  • I got my current laptop in the fall of 2010. It's served me well: 8gb of ram, 2.67ghz dual core processor and it's chewed through a few SSDs in its life.

    Sadly, it is falling apart. It's been sorta-dying for over a year now, with nice, random freeze-ups and memory corruption issues. Compiled apps run the best, but Java has a tendency to crash every tenth invocation or so. dmesg frequently shows the kernel bitching about some critical piece of software or hardware failing, but still the old girl trudges on.

    Keys are literally falling off the keyboard. Just today I had to pry off the tilde key from the top and affix it to where the R key was because the R key just decided to crack its plastic brace thingy and no longer stick to the keyboard.

    The sad thing is, I have it's replacement already. I bought it about nine months ago, but have been too fucking busy with a series of More Important Things to bother with moving to another laptop. It's sitting next to me now, its quad cores, 16gb of ram and its 500gb SSD sitting mournfully idle.

    Part of the problem I had is that since I run Linux, actually getting the motherfucker to work was a bit of a nightmare. I also had this idea to put ZFS on there so I could create snapshots and stream constant incremental diffs to Amazon S3. And while that was a pretty good idea, it did add many, many hours of struggle to actually getting it working.

    Oh, then there's the fact the entire block device ZFS sits on is encrypted, and then I had multiple fucking issues getting video drivers and audio to work, then getting it to play Flash videos. My last hurdle was getting it to suspend and come back to life without shitting itself. After a dozen hours of so of beating my head against the wall on that one, I found that if I ditched the Open Source nouveau drivers for my nvidia card and instead use the proprietary ones provided by nvidia, it will suspend and resume fine. Hoo-rah!

    So I think this weekend is when I am going to migrate all my shit over to the laptop. It's going to be exciting.



  •  Quadcore Intel Core2, 2.6GHz, 4GBram on a 32bit OS.

    Abotu 4 years old I guess? Could be 5. It's slow because of that mysterious property of system rot. I think the hard drive's not doing too well anymore. Replace that and it would be fast as any, I wager. I'm not playing games on it, obviously, and everything else can't put a load on it-- until you count HD slowness.

    Company computers should invest in fast storage, not Hurzes or Gigglebytes.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    I got my current laptop in the fall of 2010. It's served me well: 8gb of ram, 2.67ghz dual core processor and it's chewed through a few SSDs in its life.

    Sadly, it is falling apart. It's been sorta-dying for over a year now, with nice, random freeze-ups and memory corruption issues. Compiled apps run the best, but Java has a tendency to crash every tenth invocation or so. dmesg frequently shows the kernel bitching about some critical piece of software or hardware failing, but still the old girl trudges on.

    Keys are literally falling off the keyboard. Just today I had to pry off the tilde key from the top and affix it to where the R key was because the R key just decided to crack its plastic brace thingy and no longer stick to the keyboard.

    The sad thing is, I have it's replacement already. I bought it about nine months ago, but have been too fucking busy with a series of More Important Things to bother with moving to another laptop. It's sitting next to me now, its quad cores, 16gb of ram and its 500gb SSD sitting mournfully idle.

    Part of the problem I had is that since I run Linux, actually getting the motherfucker to work was a bit of a nightmare. I also had this idea to put ZFS on there so I could create snapshots and stream constant incremental diffs to Amazon S3. And while that was a pretty good idea, it did add many, many hours of struggle to actually getting it working.

    Oh, then there's the fact the entire block device ZFS sits on is encrypted, and then I had multiple fucking issues getting video drivers and audio to work, then getting it to play Flash videos. My last hurdle was getting it to suspend and come back to life without shitting itself. After a dozen hours of so of beating my head against the wall on that one, I found that if I ditched the Open Source nouveau drivers for my nvidia card and instead use the proprietary ones provided by nvidia, it will suspend and resume fine. Hoo-rah!

    So I think this weekend is when I am going to migrate all my shit over to the laptop. It's going to be exciting.

     

    I envy you - I work in a place where the salesmen have to have the latest technology but the actual guys that need the horsepower are given leftovers. The reception staff have 24" touchscreens, which serve them well when they are engaging in a game of solitaire... I'm still running a 17" monitor paired with my 15.4" laptop screen (it's HD res but on 15.4" that's some serious pixel density, and my eyes don't currently have a zoom function). Everywhere other office I've been in/seen has had decent kit for users and even nicer kit for devs, yet we are running 6 year old mid-spec laptops. Mines a Latitude D830 - yeah it's dual core... I had to whinge to get it upgraded to 4 gigs of ram, but the stock 4500RPM HD is still in there :(

    On asking about the new machines we've been promised and specifying that I'd like an SSD to help get things moving, the response was "No we'll probably just stick a good half terabyte drive in instead". Yeah because that's what I need.. a nice slow fat drive where I can dump loads of crap. Might have to settle for a hybrid. Why are we not any sort of priority?



  • @dhromed said:

    Quadcore Intel Core2, 2.6GHz, 4GBram on a 32bit OS.

    Huh, so you have substantially better CPU than my current, old laptop, but worse memory.

    @dhromed said:

    Company computers should invest in fast storage, not Hurzes or Gigglebytes.

    I think they should go for all 3, although neither of mine are company computers. I run VMs and stuff, so having extra ram is always good. Also, sometimes I like to open Eclipse and just sort of stare at it for awhile before closing it, and you're not going to get it to open with any less than 8gb, son.

    Companies do have that annoying habit of spending $200k on a programmer, only to try to save $1k on his workstation by skimping. I think of it like "Hey, every extra second my compiles take is that much greater chance I'm going to hop on over to my favorite forum, get involved in an argument, and spend the rest of the afternoon yelling at some Swedish guy about whether or not curling is a real sport (it's not)." So really it's in the interests of my company (not to mention the proud people of Sweden) to drop that extra $30 and get the processor that didn't come from a Speak 'n Spell.

    (Although, thankfully my last few companies have not done this. They're usually pushing high-powered company computers down my throat. But I don't like keeping a company computer and a home computer, so I tell them to keep their mon--no, wait, give me a raise!)



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    I run VMs and stuff,
     

    Well that's different.

    @morbiuswilters said:

    sometimes I like to open Eclipse and just sort of stare at it for awhile before closing it

    When you feel sad it's good to be validated, isn't it.

    @morbiuswilters said:

    Companies do have that annoying habit of spending $200k on a programmer, only to try to save $1k on his workstation by skimping

    We have this odd mindset that yes, hardware is way cheaper than people, so don't skimp on it... and yet it still happens. I declined a computer upgrade a year ago.

    Maybe I'm just a big ol' idiot.

    Still, my monitor is the best in the company, and I felt like I had to defend why I needed it before it would be purchased for me. Ideal situation is like "pick any monitor you want under $1,000" and no questions asked.

     

     



  • @Charleh said:

    I envy you

    I bought those laptops myself, but my company probably would have bought them for me if I had asked. I just hate using a company laptop.. trying to explain how the hard drive came to be overflowing with ferret porn is never a fun conversation.

    @Charleh said:

    Why are we not any sort of priority?

    I'm assuming your company is being run by malevolent trolls who are just taking the piss while trying to run the whole place into the ground. That's the only explanation for the receptionists getting 24" touchscreens. (Actually, at a place I worked at long ago, they came and took the 17" LCD off my desk and replaced it with a 15" CRT with a severely broken something which made everything blurry and washed-out looking. This was a desktop so it was my only monitor. They gave my monitor to the receptionist because we'd just moved into a brand new building they had built and they didn't want people coming in the front door to think we were too poor to afford LCDs. The fact that this made my job harder seemed to concern nobody at all. They preferred to have critical software delayed for weeks rather than spend $200 on a fucking monitor for me.

    Eventually, we got a new dev and before he started I stole the LCD from his desk and gave him the CRT. Shit rolls downhill and all that. A bit later, every single skilled developer--myself included--quit; of the engineers left, the one with the most experience had just graduated high school. The company was acquired by a competitor for most likely a rock-bottom price not long after. I should also point out that when I was there, we had something like 60% market share, with 4 other competitors splitting the remaining 40%. So to have a competitor buy them out shows how badly they fucked up their lead.)



  • @dhromed said:

    Ideal situation is like "pick any monitor you want under $1,000" and no questions asked.

    Agreed. I've had companies try to buy me 30" 1080p monitors--and they cost a decent amount--but I don't want icons as big as my fist. Nor do I want to scratch the viewing surface because I mistook some pixels for delicious jelly beans and tried to reach out to grab them. That awesome 27" monitor I have is something I bought for myself. I used to keep it in the office, but now I just work at home. I could probably have got them to buy it for me, but I just like owning my own stuff. I don't want to fall in love with hardware just to have it taken from me when I find a new job.



  •  We do "refresh and roll". About every 6 months, a few new "state of the art machines" are ordered. These go to the people with the biggest demonstrated need. Their old machines go to the next tier, and so on. On average a machine lasts 5 years before rolling out the door to the trash heap [actually we donate]. This has proven to be very cost effective instead of buying "mid-range" upgrades for the median users. We encourage many clients to adopt this approach, only some do, but most of them do realize large benefits.



  • You have my sympathy. If you can raise about $150 replacing the HDD with an SSD will make a big difference to performance. Memory upgrades for laptops are also fairly inexpensive and with SQL in use that would change things a lot.

    As I define the machine specs for my development team, I know it's a false economy to skimp on the hardware. My PC is a couple of years old now, and is currently a Core i7 + 12GB ram, 500Gb SSD, three monitors. I added upgrades as they became cheaper.

    My minimum spec for my team is *at least* Core i5, 8GB RAM, 256Gb SSD, two monitors (21"+)

    Logic

    A basic laptop or PC might be about $500, a good one $1000-$1500. Let's say it's $1250, so that's about a $750 difference. Let's say the lifetime is two years, so $750/24 =~ $32 per month.

    Let's assume the basic laptop takes longer to do operations like compile, run and so on, and that results in about 30 minutes per day waiting. In a five-day week that's a total of 2.5 hours, and 4 weeks a month makes that 10 hours per month.

    Let's take a developer salary at about $70k pa (which is fairly conservative), so the monthly cost of that developer is $5800. For an average 8-hour day that's about 160 hours a month, so hourly rate is about $36.

    Buying the slower laptop saved $32 per month, but cost an extra $360 in lost productivity (10 x $36). It's an absolute no-brainer. You'd have to push the numbers to extremes to make buying the cheaper PC justifiable.



  • So far as laptops are concerned, mine is just under two years old - 2.2GHz Quad Core i7, 8GB RAM, boring laptop AMD Radeon 6750M, it's stellar for what I need it for and it can play the odd round of TF2 or L4D2 (I just realised how much that sounds like a Star Wars reference, oh dear) at the weekend.

    Desktops on the other hand... well my last desktop machine was an iMac (G3, green, 333MHz ooh the shiny) but the screen in it crapped out more or less a month after warranty. The desktop before THAT on the other hand I still have, and it still runs - a Performa 6200 from 1996, though it was bought in '97. The network card in it is fried though so I have to jump through hoops to get it to connect it to the Internet but apart from that, what's not to love about OS 8.6? (apart from everything.)

    We also have a RiscStation in the cupboard, which happily burbles away running some version of RISC OS 4 whenever we attach a monitor to it for when we want to feel like it's 1995 and the British computer industry still hasn't completely died yet. 

    I work in local tech support for the community so I'm fortunate not to be limited by any particular software regime, although having been in that sitaution before (education establishments demanding Claris-compatible documents more than five years after discontinuation, for example - yes QE College I'm looking at you) I know EXACTLY how much it sucks. 



  • Charleh, find a new employer. Seriously. As morbs illustrated, and as I've also personally been privy too, if a company proritizes secretaries over devs... that's a company that's not going anywhere.

    Sooner or later profits will start to drop because the people who actually make those profits are struggling with obsolete PCs... then the layoffs will start, and IT will be first... so either you'll end up without a job, or you'll end up doing your work plus the work of the guys who were fired.

    Bail out now, before the plane hits the ground.



  • We've got great i7 laptops with SSDs and tons of RAM but our CI environment is SVN and Jenkins so that we don't get too productive. I love nothing more than to restart a build job five times because the NAnt script Jenkins runs can't delete a random file from somewhere because of "Access Denied". I also love the stacktrace the Jenkins web gui vomits all over the screen when you try to connect a slave. But hey, we've got chuck norris and darth vader personas which compensates for the total lack of reliability, and at least the whole thing runs on steam from a coal fired boiler.

    I'm sure in a number of years the management will finally realise that with our MSDN subscription we don't actually have to pay anything for TFS as we already have it, instead of quoting me $10,000+ worth of licensing costs every time I bring it up. by which point I hope to have retired anyway.




  • @Quango said:


    Logic


    A basic laptop or PC might be about $500, a good one $1000-$1500. Let's say it's $1250, so that's about a $750 difference. Let's say the lifetime is two years, so $750/24 =~ $32 per month.

    Let's assume the basic laptop takes longer to do operations like compile, run and so on, and that results in about 30 minutes per day waiting. In a five-day week that's a total of 2.5 hours, and 4 weeks a month makes that 10 hours per month.

    Let's take a developer salary at about $70k pa (which is fairly conservative), so the monthly cost of that developer is $5800. For an average 8-hour day that's about 160 hours a month, so hourly rate is about $36.

    Buying the slower laptop saved $32 per month, but cost an extra $360 in lost productivity (10 x $36). It's an absolute no-brainer. You'd have to push the numbers to extremes to make buying the cheaper PC justifiable.

    This is what stumps me about management types. Isn't cost/benefit analysis what they're supposed to do to justify their employment?



  • @TheCPUWizard said:

    We do "refresh and roll". About every 6 months, a few new "state of the art machines" are ordered. These go to the people with the biggest demonstrated need. Their old machines go to the next tier, and so on. On average a machine lasts 5 years before rolling out the door to the trash heap [actually we donate]. This has proven to be very cost effective instead of buying "mid-range" upgrades for the median users. We encourage many clients to adopt this approach, only some do, but most of them do realize large benefits.

    So every 6 months some poor sap has to get a new computer? I would probably have an aneurysm. Shit, I've had my new laptop for 9 months, and I haven't even used it yet.



  • @JimLahey said:

    ...but our CI environment is SVN and Jenkins so that we don't get too productive.

    lol. I actually like Jenkins well enough, but I use it on Unix, so it probably has fewer problems.



  • @JimLahey said:

    We've got great i7 laptops with SSDs and tons of RAM but our CI environment is SVN and Jenkins so that we don't get too productive. I love nothing more than to restart a build job five times because the NAnt script Jenkins runs can't delete a random file from somewhere because of "Access Denied". I also love the stacktrace the Jenkins web gui vomits all over the screen when you try to connect a slave. But hey, we've got chuck norris and darth vader personas which compensates for the total lack of reliability, and at least the whole thing runs on steam from a coal fired boiler.

    Ahhh, Hudson/Jenkins.

    You want to click this link to view a build that you just started? Fuck you, error 404. Click back, click the link again, it works fine. Except when it doesn't, so then you go to the actual page of the build and click the link (which is exactly the same) and then it works.

    You want to revert to an old plugin version because the new one doesn't have the necessary fixes that you submitted to the lazy-ass Jenkins maintainers half a year ago? OK, I'll tell you the rollback worked, but then stay on the new version of the plugin. You'll have to restart the Jenkins service to get it to load the correct (old) version. Oh, and that restart will only take half an hour.

    My personal favourite is getting logged out while you're doing something that requires authentication. Instead of getting redirected to the login page you just get error 500. And of course your changes go down the shitter.

    Open source, people. It fucking works. If your definition of "works" is "it doesn't fucking work and it gives you herpes".



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @TheCPUWizard said:

    We do "refresh and roll". About every 6 months, a few new "state of the art machines" are ordered. These go to the people with the biggest demonstrated need. Their old machines go to the next tier, and so on. On average a machine lasts 5 years before rolling out the door to the trash heap [actually we donate]. This has proven to be very cost effective instead of buying "mid-range" upgrades for the median users. We encourage many clients to adopt this approach, only some do, but most of them do realize large benefits.

    So every 6 months some poor sap has to get a new computer? I would probably have an aneurysm. Shit, I've had my new laptop for 9 months, and I haven't even used it yet.

    In the Windows world, we don't have to make incantations to dark gods and sacrifice chickens to get a working development environment setup on a new machine. So when an upgrade is proffered, we grab it like hungry peasants grab cake.



  • @The_Assimilator said:

    In the Windows world, we don't have to make incantations to dark gods and sacrifice chickens to get a working development environment setup on a new machine. So when an upgrade is proffered, we grab it like hungry peasants grab cake.

    I suppose that's true. It takes me awhile to warm up to hardware, though. For example, it took about 6 months before I thought my current laptop looked "sleek" and "cool" and not like a hideous monstrosity shat out by some design-school dropout.

    I'm still skeptical of my new laptop. It has a lot of metal on the case, which I don't care for. (I thought the TiBook look was killer when I was 22, now I realize how fucking annoying and ugly it is.) Also, for some reason I cannot fucking comprehend, the areas where you wrists wrest are covered in some kind of rubbery material which collects dust very readily, instead of standard plastic which can be wiped clean. I don't think I'm ever going to approve of that.

    Oh, and then they move the goddamn keyboard configuration around. I'm going from one 14" Dell to one that's 2 generations ahead, so of course they moved shit like the Delete and PgUp, PgDn keys like a bunch of jackasses.



  • @The_Assimilator said:

    You want to click this link to view a build that you just started? Fuck you, error 404. Click back, click the link again, it works fine. Except when it doesn't, so then you go to the actual page of the build and click the link (which is exactly the same) and then it works.

    Never noticed this, honestly, but I'm running a fairly recent version.

    @The_Assimilator said:

    My personal favourite is getting logged out while you're doing something that requires authentication. Instead of getting redirected to the login page you just get error 500. And of course your changes go down the shitter.

    Yeah, that's fucking ridiculous. And the logout times are, too. Why doesn't my session last a normal, 10 hour workday? Why the fuck do I have to login after 15 minutes of inactivity? Probably a setting somewhere, but why is the default so fucking stupid? Look, if I'm building software for Raytheon we can set it to 15 minute timeout, otherwise let's have sensible defaults, mmkay?

    But by FOSS standards, the GUI is really, really good.



  • When I worked for one of the Local University IT departments, they did a slightly different version of that.  Every year, they brought x/3 new machines at the high range level, although not bleeding edge.  If you're machine was one of the oldest 1/3, you got a new machine.  If you just started the job, you also got one of the old machines, but that put you in the running for a nifty new machine within a year.

    So, yes, you had that "Oh, geeze, I have to redo my machine" in less than a year, but then you had a nice machine that slowly became an ok machine for three years, and then the cycle repeated itself with a nice machine.



  • Yeah, that sort of thing is what sane IT departments do when they manage to fight out a fixed budget. Slow and steady upgrades, with a spread out workload.

    Unfortunately, in too many small shops IT is only taken care of when there's a windfall. Lots of places think of IT as a cash sinkhole and then complain that nothing works.



  • Gah. When I came in for my first day at the place I work now, I was handed a box containing an El Cheapo desktop replacement laptop from the local PC World. The core specs aren't so bad, but moving the damn thing feels like the scene in Free Willy where they load the whale onto the trailer to transport it to the ocean.



  •  Would they make you go back to lugging a desktop if you accidentally spilled a can of soda on the laptop? 



  • We have decent laptops (no desktops). We got new ones with SSDs and stuff about a year ago when they changed platforms. The new laptops don't give us admin access, but I still prefer to develop on them due to the nice specs. Our remote VMs (which we do have admin access on) are slow and unresponsive, and occasinally reformatted without warning.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    so of course they moved shit like the Delete and PgUp, PgDn keys like a bunch of jackasses.

    On the plus side, they put buttons like "Start Web Cam" and "Visit the manufacturer's website" in places that are easy to accidentally graze.



  • My current work computer is an i3 with 4GB RAM and two 24" monitors. But since I don't really do any "real" developing on it it's all I need: I really just need the text editor and browser while the server does the actual work. And since it's Perl there's no compiling. My biggest problem is with MySQL Workbench: it just freezes for several seconds every time I go to the "home" tab. I guess having ~300 entries in the list slows it right down.

    Around here the biggest bottleneck is the Internet connection. We only have a 7/1 Mbps ADSL2+ connection ("up to 24Mbps"), virtually the same as what I have at home. We actually use the same modem! (Billion 7404VGP) There's talk of getting a proper business connection, which will cost about 10x as much, but should be a full 24/24Mbps symmetric. The monthly fee is only a few hours of billable time for one developer, so it would be well worth it.



  • TRWTF is using laptops in mostly stationary scenarios. Yeah, I know about docks, but I find they're rarely used.

    That said, I did recently add a fullscreen monitor and keyboard to a client's old MacBook setup.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    So every 6 months some poor sap has to get a new computer? I would probably have an aneurysm. Shit, I've had my new laptop for 9 months, and I haven't even used it yet.

    The school that employs me turns over a quarter of the workstation fleet each year, and I don't move them about, so my users just get a new computer every four years.

    I'm posting this from my trusty Dell Inspiron 8200 laptop, bought it in 2001 and still working well. It came with an unbelievably huge 40GB hard drive, a totally over-the-top 512MB of RAM, a crazy fast 1.7GHz Pentium 4 Mobile CPU and super-grunty nVidia Geforce4 440 Go 128MB graphics.

    I've since upgraded to 320GB (biggest PATA drive I could get) and 2GB RAM which is as much as the motherboard takes. The BIOS got flaky a couple of years ago but a re-flash fixed that.

    The main reason I bought it was that it had the nicest screen I'd ever seen (15.4" 1600x1200 Dell Ultrasharp) and the main reason I'm still using it is that I've still not been annoyed enough by its slowness to be bothered spending a tenth of its original purchase price on something more capable.

    The very first thing I did after switching it on for the first time was ceremonially refuse to accept the Windows licence agreement before restarting and installing Red Hat 9. These days it runs Debian Wheezy with XFCE. I'll be quite sad when it eventually falls over.

    The oldest machine on my desk is the Apple //e I bought for $2 at a flea market in 1988. It still works, and I have yet to find a failed 5.25" 140K floppy disk in my archive.

    The power supply in my heavily customized 1979 Apple ][+ died five years ago, and because I still have a working //e I haven't bothered fixing it.



  • No; the IT support in my company is competent. And even if they weren't, it wouldn't be too tough to say to my boss, "hey IT's been sitting on this bullshit for like 3 months, mind if I just expense one?" and he'd approve it no problem. You reach a point where if a system don't work you gotta go outside it.

    EDIT: That said I don't have a work laptop now, but I'm ok with that because it's a good excuse to turn down travel when people "require" it. "Oh I have to be on-site in LA? I don't have a laptop." "Oh never mind, we'll do a remote meeting." "SCORE!"



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    It takes me awhile to warm up to hardware, though. For example, it took about 6 months before I thought my current laptop looked "sleek" and "cool" and not like a hideous monstrosity shat out by some design-school dropout.

    Call me crazy, but I do that BEFORE I BUY THEM. My current mobile beast.



  •  I was using a Pentium 4 machine in 2010 with VS2003 and SQL Server 2000 installed. I glad I don't work there anymore.



  •  @Zemm said:

    My biggest problem is with MySQL Workbench: it just freezes for several seconds every time I go to the "home" tab. I guess having ~300 entries in the list slows it right down.

    You might want to look at HEIDI.

     



  • @blakeyrat said:

    . My current mobile beast.
     

    How the hell does this not make Apple's lawsuit volcano erupt?



  • @dhromed said:

    @blakeyrat said:
    My current mobile beast.
    How the hell does this not make Apple's lawsuit volcano erupt?

    Apple's too smart to engage the Streisand Effect and lose 20,000,000 sales to ACER. The S7 is so much better and cheaper than the MacBook Air, Apple doesn't want anybody knowing it exists.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @morbiuswilters said:
    It takes me awhile to warm up to hardware, though. For example, it took about 6 months before I thought my current laptop looked "sleek" and "cool" and not like a hideous monstrosity shat out by some design-school dropout.

    Call me crazy, but I do that BEFORE I BUY THEM. My current mobile beast.

    While that's a sexy beast, my old eyes can't handle anything that small anymore. I'd need something 13-14" before I'd spend monies.



  • @zelmak said:

    While that's a sexy beast, my old eyes can't handle anything that small anymore. I'd need something 13-14" before I'd spend monies.

    Mine neither. I'm pissed that fucking Chrome doesn't do fucking UI scaling fucking correctly.

    Yes I know other people on this forum seem to think it works ok, but damned if I can get it to work. I got Chrome at 100% or 200% and nothing in between.



  • @The_Assimilator said:

    @Quango said:

    Logic

    A basic laptop or PC might be about $500, a good one $1000-$1500. Let's say it's $1250, so that's about a $750 difference. Let's say the lifetime is two years, so $750/24 =~ $32 per month.

    Let's assume the basic laptop takes longer to do operations like compile, run and so on, and that results in about 30 minutes per day waiting. In a five-day week that's a total of 2.5 hours, and 4 weeks a month makes that 10 hours per month.

    Let's take a developer salary at about $70k pa (which is fairly conservative), so the monthly cost of that developer is $5800. For an average 8-hour day that's about 160 hours a month, so hourly rate is about $36.

    Buying the slower laptop saved $32 per month, but cost an extra $360 in lost productivity (10 x $36). It's an absolute no-brainer. You'd have to push the numbers to extremes to make buying the cheaper PC justifiable.

    This is what stumps me about management types. Isn't cost/benefit analysis what they're supposed to do to justify their employment?

    At my last place (that I left in late 2007) we were still procuring 17" CRTs for all new machines. Even though I was able to show in a nice fancy Excel Graph with bright colours and good looking fonts that the extra $50 for LCDs would pay for itself in electricity cost savings in 3 months, cheapo upper management wouldn't go for them.



  • A company I left about 2 years ago now took their sweet time upgrading all the developers to new equipment. I was on a machine that was about 4 years old when the upgrade finally happened, and we got our shiny new PCs. Then -- that same day, as a matter of fact -- I went to the YMCA for my workout, and the PCs at the front desk where they scan your card to let you in were more powerful machines than the ones my company provided. I'll never forget that.



  • @The_Assimilator said:

    This is what stumps me about management types. Isn't cost/benefit analysis what they're supposed to do to justify their employment?

    Yes, but they play by the rules set forth by their management. And whenever people set up rules, they have unintended consequences, like people stealing gopher feet. So the manager is more concerned about optimizing some budget line item on which he is directly evaluated than the criterion of overall company health.



  • @The_Assimilator said:

    In the Windows world, we don't have to make incantations to dark gods and sacrifice chickens to get a working development environment setup on a new machine. So when an upgrade is proffered, we grab it like hungry peasants grab cake.

    I doubt most of us have as many issues as morbs reported (I don't). Though I have a colleague who gets Chinese spyware infections several times per year, and it takes about a week before "productivity" starts happening. Pretty sure Windows isn't the problem in that case, though...

    Whatever the environment, getting everything installed is always a PITA, and you forget just how many things don't come with the standard image. On modern Linux distros, at least, I don't need to track down install media or license keys.



  • @boomzilla said:

    And whenever people set up rules, they have unintended consequences, like people stealing gopher feet.
     

    Real Life has some balance issues.



  • @Nexzus said:

    Let's take a developer salary at about $70k pa (which is fairly conservative), so the monthly cost of that developer is $5800.



    Not even close. That's what the guy's payroll cost is. Add in employer contributions to medical, 401K, social security, workers comp. Add in the cost of the office space the employee uses; the infrastructure costs (phone, heat, light, cleaning expenses, plumbing, copier, internet, ... ); shared costs/overhead -- HR, sales, marketing, legal, vacation time, incentives ...


    That "lost productivity cost" adds up quickly when you consider those costs too.


    Now consider the cost of losing a sale, because a feature that could have been in the product got left out because the employees had to wait for their builds to finish, and didn't get the feature finished in time for inclusion in the release. How much is THAT worth?



  • @DrPepper said:

    @Nexzus said:
    Let's take a developer salary at about $70k pa (which is fairly conservative), so the monthly cost of that developer is $5800.



    Not even close. That's what the guy's payroll cost is. Add in employer contributions to medical, 401K, social security, workers comp. Add in the cost of the office space the employee uses; the infrastructure costs (phone, heat, light, cleaning expenses, plumbing, copier, internet, ... ); shared costs/overhead -- HR, sales, marketing, legal, vacation time, incentives ...

    Note: it's good to have those numbers at hand for when your idiot co-worker says something like, "we should use MySQL instead of MS SQL so we can save the licensing cost".

    Just yesterday I had a talk with my boss about how it would be cheaper to just fucking buy the client a 1080p projector for a couple grand than re-writing our product to look ok at 1280x1024. (Especially when literally every other device using it has a horizontal resolution of at least 1680 pixels.) It's incredible to me how many people in offices, running businesses, have no idea what things actually cost.



  • We've got Dell XPS 15 with Core i7-2720QM @ 2.2 GHz with 8 GB of RAM and 500 GB HDD. I had to basically beg management to get them though because we were using older Dell XPS 17 models and they were dying one-by-one. They work pretty well. Our internal servers are fairly ghetto. We've only got 2 non-virtual servers left though. XenServer all the way. A few of our prod servers are decent and actually made this decade, but the rest are at least 6 years old.

    Visual SourceSafe? Ouch. I've never used it. Only heard stories. One word, Mercurial. We use SVN mostly, but have a Mercurial server also used for an internal project. I'm going to be migrating everyone to Mercurial soon. Just have to make the time for the training.



  • @boomzilla said:

    @The_Assimilator said:
    This is what stumps me about management types. Isn't cost/benefit analysis what they're supposed to do to justify their employment?

    Yes, but they play by the rules set forth by their management. And whenever people set up rules, they have unintended consequences, like people stealing gopher feet. So the manager is more concerned about optimizing some budget line item on which he is directly evaluated than the criterion of overall company health.

    Hey it's the first time I see this, because of your long Filed Under the page got a long horizontal scrollbar. Works in IE and Chrome, I don't know about Firefox since I'm not that stupid.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @DrPepper said:
    @Nexzus said:
    Let's take a developer salary at about $70k pa (which is fairly conservative), so the monthly cost of that developer is $5800.



    Not even close. That's what the guy's payroll cost is. Add in employer contributions to medical, 401K, social security, workers comp. Add in the cost of the office space the employee uses; the infrastructure costs (phone, heat, light, cleaning expenses, plumbing, copier, internet, ... ); shared costs/overhead -- HR, sales, marketing, legal, vacation time, incentives ...

    Note: it's good to have those numbers at hand for when your idiot co-worker says something like, "we should use MySQL instead of MS SQL so we can save the licensing cost".

    Just yesterday I had a talk with my boss about how it would be cheaper to just fucking buy the client a 1080p projector for a couple grand than re-writing our product to look ok at 1280x1024. (Especially when literally every other device using it has a horizontal resolution of at least 1680 pixels.) It's incredible to me how many people in offices, running businesses, have no idea what things actually cost.

    The dollar figure hardly matters; in most business the thinking is not in the long term but in meeting the quarterly budget numbers. I'm sure some accoutants get physically ill when someone suggest to convert an OPEX to a CAPEX.



  • @Charleh said:

    Waiting on a new PC for work here... currently running a mid spec laptop (since we occasionally visit clients and in the past we actually had to lug a desktop PC on site if we needed our own machine...) which practically pre-dates the dawn of man

    Basically - it's over 6 years old and I have to wait 5 hours for it to do anything. It was not bad 6 years ago when we got it and I was running visual studio 2005/2008

    Now I'm running VS2010 and a couple of versions of SQL (since some clients are still on SQL2005/2008 etc) and I'm also expected to work on Dynamics NAV, in which a standard client DB is in the tens of gigabytes (oh yeah and don't expect us to actually have a dev server - oh we do, but we don't have any sort of access to it apart from remote SQL access... so we can't actually install anything..)

    We're also still waiting on a source control system ... well we have Visual SourceSafe 2005 if you can call that source control.

    Actually been waiting for this laptop for... about 2 years now 

    Anyone else in the same boat?

    A while ago I was working for a company that happens to be a major Apple shareholder, and every time a new Apple product is released they upgrade everyone: iPhone, iPad, Macbook, monitors - for each of the 110 employees. People with on-call duty receive two laptops and two tablets. The sales team even keep a small stash of iPads to give away to clients who come for meetings so they can leave with a PDF version of all the presentations they saw in the meeting.



    And what are they doing with the 1-year old stuff they replace? They stack it in a storage room, in the original boxes, with cables neatly folded, never to be touched again. The helpdesk call it the Apple Cemetery. Like everyone I asked why they don't give the old stuff to employees or sell it on eBay. I was told that the board had approved a discretionary budget for this equipment that was not impacting IT spending (the CEO gets a hard-on when he tells everyone that his entire company has the latest and greatest Apple stuff) and that from a risk management perspective it was not cost-effective, and that's that.



    You would expect employees to be very happy, but the truth is that people always find a reason to complain. I remember hearing a lady bitching out loud that anyone could go in line at Apple store on the day the new iPhone is released and walk out with one, but that she had to wait 4 weeks before she could get hers (evergreening 110 people takes a while even once the helpdesk has it in stock).



  • As the Tech Assistant at a public high school, there's nothing wrong with my dual core from 2010.  I've bumped the RAM to 8GB, and have more local storage than our SAN, thanks to spare parts that wind up in my case instead of a drawer.

    For travel, I've got a netbook like the students, but mine is a little special.  One of the MBs failed, and the warranty replacement included a nicer CPU/Board. 

    We used to have a replacement cycle, but that budget went to the netbooks, so desktops get internal upgrades.

    As a side note, how do you feel about Windows Experience Scores?  They're not perfect, but they offer a comparison you can do on every Windows machine.  I look at individual scores, not the 3.2 they get for having integrated graphics.


Log in to reply
 

Looks like your connection to What the Daily WTF? was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.