Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Re: 2017 iMac freezes up

Multicore Benchmark on my laptop: ~3000

This is really good for a refurbished laptop that I paid $89 for.

Multicore Benchmark on my old iMac: ~5000

The latest $150 Amazon tablet also benchmarks at this. It is an amazing world we live in.

I still use this machine to analyze chess games and openings. Because the display tends to quit, I access the machine remotely.

Multicore Benchmark on my new iMac: ~8100

Ideally I would have built a new AMD machine and gotten up to 20000. However, I needed a Mac to do the work that I am now doing.

I am suspicious of the combo drive using an SSD as a buffer to the hard drive. If something went wrong there then it would definitely freeze the computer.

Best wishes,

John Coffey

Monday, November 18, 2019

2017 iMac freezes up

A few months ago I purchased a used 2017 iMac and installed Windows 10 on it. For the most part, this has been a great machine. However, there is now a problem. The computer will appear to run slow and then eventually freeze. This usually happens while using Google Chrome.

I am normally good at dealing with any kind of software problem that comes up, but this could be something going wrong with the hardware, like the RAM, the SSD, or some controller board. Hardware is mostly outside my area of expertise, although I did buy some new RAM chips that I have not yet installed. I could try taking out the old RAM chips and put in the new RAM chips and see if the problem persists.

On the software side maybe there is a virus, which seems unlikely because I have Norton which normally takes care of these things. It is possible there is a driver issue, but that also seems unlikely. I would not expect Google Chrome to be the problem, but I would not rule it out either. I could try a different web browser.

I need to reboot the computer into McIntosh mode and see if the problem happens again. If it does, then it is a hardware problem. However, if the problem goes away, then something is wrong in the Windows 10 world and I would consider erasing the Windows 10 partition and reinstalling the operating system, which is a time-consuming task.


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Intel Could Take YEARS to Catch Up… - Ryzen 9 3950X Review

Monday, August 19, 2019

Samsung Galaxy A20 Review - Amazing Budget Android Phone $160-$200

Budget phones have gotten pretty powerful.  The CPU benchmark on this phone rivals my old desktop computer. When it comes to bencmarks, Apple is usually on top with their own custom CPU's, but Apple seems to want to soak their customers.  I think that I would be quite happy with this budget phone, which is plenty powerful.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6c6Vyf3RE8&feature=push-u-sub&attr_tag=q49imeFrbiOIK46p%3A6



Tuesday, July 23, 2019

GameStop Is Gonna Try Some Big Changes To Save Itself.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwVpywoDM-c

The Cortana at 1:12 is the funniest thing I have seen in a while. It has happened to me before.
As a result of this, I just tried to see if I could get Contana (on Windows 10) and Siri (on the iPhone) to talk to each other. The result was surprising and amusing. The conversation went like this: Me: "Hey Cortana!" Cortana: Beep. Me: "Hey Siri." Siri: Beep. Cortana: "Shirley you are not Siri-us." (Exactly like that!)  
Siri: "I am always serious."

Saturday, June 29, 2019

How many computers do we own?

Around 1984 there was an article with a prediction that went like this: "Someday you will throw away computers. Your house will be littered with them. You will get computers in cereal boxes." Thirty-five years ago, that day seemed like it would be pretty far off.

How exactly has this prediction faired? Well, how many computers do I own? Here is the list...

1. One of the more powerful computers in my home is my iPhone 6s+. It is a powerful computer masquerading as a phone.

2. I have an iPhone 6+ that mostly works, except for the wi-fi, which is why I don't use it anymore.

3. I have an iPhone 5 that is becoming obsolete, but it would still be functional. It only uses the AT&T type radio bands, which means that it could also work with some discount companies.

4. If I were to look really hard in my junk pile, I could find my old iPhone 3GS. It might still function as a phone, but nobody would want to use it.

5. I have an iPad 4. The only reason I bought it was because my iPad 2, which I loved, was stolen. However, I don't really have much of a need for it. The iPads were originally touted as book readers to compete with the Amazon Fire tablets, but I don't think that reading books on a full-size iPad is a great experience. You can do all the normal internet stuff with them, but I have plenty of devices that can do that. I think that my iPad is best used to play audiobooks.

6. About eight years ago I bought a Microsoft Tablet on a Black Friday sale for $200 because this seemed like a fantastic deal at the time. At the time, it probably was. However, this has been the most useless piece of crap that I own. One could use it to browse the internet and read email, but it is way out of date, and it was never very useful to begin with. It is less pleasant to hold than an iPad. I doubt that I can get any software for it.

7. I'm typing this on my late-2009 27" iMac. However, this computer has a number of problems, such as the display repeatedly shutting off. The computer has 4 major parts that have been identified by a technician as showing signs that they may fail in the near future, which makes the machine too costly to consider fixing. Even just dealing with the display problem is not really worth it.

8. Which is why, today, I bought a 2017 iMac, which is a significant upgrade from my old iMac. It will take at least a day for me to get all my software installed and working on the new machine.

9. A couple of years ago I was given a Raspberry PI 3, which is a very cheap small computer the size of a deck of cards. It can run Linux and do normal computer stuff, although it is not very powerful at all. However, I configured it to be a game emulation box that can be hooked up to my TV.

A new Raspberry PI 4 has just been released, and it is more powerful.

10. I own both a NES Classic Edition and a SNES Classic Edition. I used to sell these for profit because they are often hard to find. I plan on selling at least one of these. Both are game emulation boxes, and I have hacked one of them to play more games. I plan on hacking the other one as well.

I am also considering also getting a Sony PlayStation Classic. It is a more powerful system that has been discounted down to $30 and can also be hacked.

11. I bought an Arcade1up machine. This is a 3/4 scale arcade game that you assemble yourself. It is essentially an emulation box, and it comes with 12 classic arcade games.

12. Back in the early 2000s, I bought a joystick that can be hooked up to an old style TV and it plays 10 classic games. As a game system it is not particularly great, but I still occasionally use it because it does a great job with one game, which is Pole Position. I don't have anything else that can play this game.

13. I have an old Sega Genesis with some cartridges that I plan on selling. Thirty years ago the 68000 processor in the Genesis was considered a mainstream computer processor. I have seen really old mainframe computers that cost a fortune that used this processor. By the 1990s the 68000 processor was only really used in game systems.

14. I have a really old laptop that someone gave me. It is very slow, but I was able to use it to run chess tournaments. However, it recently stopped booting. It appears that the hard drive is corrupted. I thought that maybe I could fix it, but...

15. I was able to get a refurbished laptop very cheap that is vastly superior. This computer proved very helpful as a backup computer while my iMac was in the shop.

So technically my house is littered with computers, some of which I could easily throw away.

If you own a calculator, which I don't, it has either a 4-bit or an 8-bit processor inside. It is also a computer, although very limited.

As far as getting computers in cereal boxes, I saw a little handheld game that came in a 2007 cereal box. It was pretty primitive, probably using a 4-bit processor.

Best wishes,

John Coffey


Saturday, June 22, 2019

iMac

When I purchased a top of the line iMac in March 2010, I paid quite a lot of money for it, but my rationale was that it should last a long time, preferably till the end of the decade.

I tend to be a heavy user. I do tasks that are processor intensive. They used to say that computers were meant to be left on all the time, so I left mine on all the time. This is probably bad advice. The chickens have come home to roost. I recently paid to have the iMac cleaned out because it was full of dust and badly overheating. (This is a problem with all-in-one-computers, plus they tend to overheat anyway. Laptops can also have problems with overheating.) However, I have 4 major components either failing or about to fail, and the high cost of repair makes it look like it is time to get a different computer.

  

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Monday, June 10, 2019

iMacs and all-in-one-computers

The problem with all-in-one-computers is that if something goes wrong then you have to fix the entire computer.

My current problem is that the display shuts off.  If I had a standard desktop tower and the display was quitting on me, I would just buy a new monitor.

My previous problem was that the computer was overheating because it was clogged with 9 years of dust,  First of all, you aren't likely to have this problem on a regular tower computer, but if you did, it is far easier to get to the internals to clean them out.

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Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Ryzen Threadripper - AMD - WikiChip

My 2009 iMac has a first-generation Core-i7 chip that has 42-nanometer circuits.  I just bought a refurbished laptop with a Core-I5 that has 35-nanometer circuits, and it performs 80% as well as the desktop even though it has half as many cores.

This is an interesting website about microprocessors.  I don't think that I would want to buy a processor with a 10 to 14-nanometer process when 7-nanometer processors are coming from AMD in August.  I find it interesting that Apple introduced 7-nanometer chips in their phones many months before either major processor company came out with 7-nanometer processors.  I also find it interesting that both the new Play Station and the new XBOX will have 7-nanometer processors from AMD.

In terms of the laws physics, it is almost impossible to get much smaller than this, although I have heard talk of a 5-nanometer chip.  I also heard about a possible 1-nanometer chip using different materials, but the technology is a long way off, and I have my doubts about how well it could work.

https://en.wikichip.org/wiki/amd/ryzen_threadripper