Do We Need Faster Processors?
O yeah, we always do! It's for the same reasons why we need a new car, new shoes or even a new house. Sure, the old car drives from A to B as well, the old shoes are not falling apart either and the old house was nice and comfy too, but you feel better in your new car, in your new shoes or your new house. You feel better for yourself and you feel better in front of others. Isn't it a bit embarrassing to admit that your car is old? Well, it's just as embarrassing to tell others that you are still using a Socket7-system, even though this system is doing all that you require it to do.
Faster Low-Cost Processors
Now a Duron or Celeron system might not be as reassuring, comforting or impressive as the latest Athlon or Pentium 4 PC, but it is dirt-cheap. That is what brings us back to the PC business. The show must go on! You can buy a 700+ MHz PC for tempting little money and that's the catch. Somehow systems need to be sold and the low-cost systems are lately so cheap that it's extremely difficult to resist. The processors inside those boxes need to have a high MHz-numbers, even though this number may not say anything much about the system's performance. That's why Intel released the most 'magnificent' Celeron at 800 MHz last week, the first Celeron with 100 MHz processor clock, and it's also why AMD launches Duron 850 today. The aching PC market is hoping that these new MHz-numbers might help the sales of a few more systems.
The Positive Side
I have to apologize. Yes, I was probably nagging a bit too much. In some way the release of extremely cheap but very fast processors is of course a blessing as well. We actually could do really impressive things with them and there are certainly a lot of people who do. Today's systems are so much faster than what you could buy for the same amount of money a year ago. There are processor intensive applications that benefit tremendously from the increased processor performance and there are certainly a lot of people on a budget, who are finally able to afford systems that run their complex applications well enough. Those people have all reasons to rejoice. One year ago the top-notch processors were Pentium III or Athlon at 800 MHz. Systems with the new Duron 850 will costs only a fraction, but supply almost the very same performance.