Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

posted by martyb on Tuesday February 19 2019, @12:19PM   Printer-friendly
from the Good-Fast-Cheap...pick-two dept.

Let's say you've got something that needs to be computerised at a slightly higher level than an Arduino, with the computing part costing less than about $100-150, and ideally less than $50 (think Beaglebone, Odroid, PCEngine, Pi and clones, Pine, etc). It looks like the only choice is between ARM at the low end and x86 at the high end. Everything else has fallen by the wayside: The last MIPS-based product was the Ci20/Ci40 from 2015 and neither the hardware nor software have been updated since, PowerPC is out there but only as high-priced SBCs and good luck finding a distro that supports it, Sparc is left with Fujitsu working on it for mainframes, and RISC-V is still a glint in everyone's eye - the few SBCs based on it cost more than a low-end server, and despite various enthusiastic press releases I can't see any timeline where I can get a $50 RISC-V device that performs the same as a $50 ARM-based one. And then there's the software support, once you leave the x86 world you've got, outside of various specialised RTOSes, Linux. A very few systems have one or two of the BSDs, often in a hit-and-miss manner, but that's it.

Has Linux + ARM/x86 killed everything else?


Original Submission

 
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday February 19 2019, @09:00PM (4 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday February 19 2019, @09:00PM (#803668)

    I think you missed it:

    The primary value of Windows OS

    is the vendor/customer relationship network. Literally millions of people keep their jobs because they "know Windows" in some capacity, even if it is something as non-value-add as how to deal with their licensing keys. The majority of people continue to train to Windows because the majority of paying jobs available in the market are for people who "know Windows."

    You might hope to slowly turn this iceberg to a new course, you might just wait for it to melt, you can even try to blow it up, but reality is: it will take time, lots and lots of time. Putting the squeeze on x86 might be like lobbying for continued use of fossil fuels, to raise the mean global temperature, to try to melt the berg a little faster. Just watch out for the unintended/unwanted side effects.

    --
    My karma ran over your dogma.
    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   +1  
       Interesting=1, Total=1
    Extra 'Interesting' Modifier   0  
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   3  
  • (Score: 2) by DannyB on Tuesday February 19 2019, @09:14PM (1 child)

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 19 2019, @09:14PM (#803675) Journal

    If x86 doesn't go away, it could just shrink in number and get more expensive because it isn't efficient or cost effective. It merely is part of what supports the legacy Windows jobs you speak of. That seems to be a self reinforcing death spiral.

    It's like saying the horse and buggy won't go away because it is so entrenched compared to the automobile.

    --
    Biden needs to mandate an official static TCP port for running 'finger' with TLS 1.3.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday February 19 2019, @10:50PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday February 19 2019, @10:50PM (#803725)

      There is definitely a self reinforcing death spiral (and it's not limited to computer OSs...) Unfortunately, the difference in efficiency between ARM and x86 isn't even an order of magnitude, whereas horses and buggies were several orders of magnitude less efficient/capable than automobiles.

      --
      My karma ran over your dogma.
  • (Score: 3, Touché) by DannyB on Tuesday February 19 2019, @09:17PM (1 child)

    by DannyB (5839) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 19 2019, @09:17PM (#803680) Journal

    How much training do you need to support windows?

    1. Did you try restarting?
    2. How about power cycling?
    3. Re-install the OS.
    4. The best advice I can offer is to buy a new PC.

    --
    Biden needs to mandate an official static TCP port for running 'finger' with TLS 1.3.
    • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Tuesday February 19 2019, @10:54PM

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Tuesday February 19 2019, @10:54PM (#803729)

      Exactly! That Linux stuff is HARD by comparison, there are actual answers out there for most things if you dig for them, and if you can't find an answer it's always possible to dive into the source code and figure it out - unlike Windows where: once you've called tech support and gotten an official shrug from the vendor, you're done: case closed, what the boss is asking for just isn't possible.

      Are you trying to say that all those people trained to your 4 step solution to all the problems in the computing universe could actually be retrained to support an OS like Ubuntu? Not likely.

      --
      My karma ran over your dogma.