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(9 to 5 Mac)   Where Macs go, PCs must follow or get out of the way   (9to5mac.com) divider line
    More: Obvious, Personal computer, Apple Inc., Macintosh, Microsoft Windows, Apple's former head, X86, Laptop, Jean-Louis Gasse  
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2109 clicks; posted to Geek » on 13 Jul 2020 at 11:18 PM (3 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2020-07-13 6:56:40 PM  
Theres already a Windows Arm version in existence. Microsoft has been trying to popularize it.
 
2020-07-13 7:06:08 PM  
I have a Surface RT ARM device from 2012 sitting in a closet....
 
2020-07-13 7:25:29 PM  
Microsoft, whether they want to or not, is expected to maintain backwards compatibility with decades old programs that anyone might want to run.

They might try and generate more attention for ARM, but I doubt it's going to work.

Apple on the other hand, is perfectly happy, and is allowed, to say just upgrade if you want that to work
 
2020-07-13 7:46:42 PM  
It sounds like everyone is assuming Apple's move to ARM is a fait accompli.  It is not.
 
2020-07-13 8:15:56 PM  

thermo: I have a Surface RT ARM device from 2012 sitting in a closet....


Yep, the Surface RT was actually a great machine, and was years ahead of the iPad in almost every way. It took Apple three years to copy the Surface's multitasking for example, and another year or so to copy (badly) the type cover. Still haven't got mouse or trackpad support, or the full windowed multitasking that the RT could do. Let alone user accounts, extended desktop support, expandable internal storage, proper USB support etc.

Microsofts cockup was the marketing. Apple launched the iPad as an iPad, so no one expected it to run Mac software and didn't complain about that. But MS launched the Surface as a Windows machine so people expected it to run all their Windows programs, which of course it didn't. So you had a chicken and egg situation, people didn't buy it because it couldn't run their old software, and no one wrote new software for it because no one bought it.

MS announced the ARM Surface X the year before Apple announced the ARM Mac, so how can this guy claim that "MS will have to follow Apple"? I see the reality distortion field is still in full force....

/The annoying thing for us Brits is that ARM is a British company, but we sold it to Japan's Softbank a couple of years ago.
 
2020-07-13 11:24:42 PM  
There are Windows machines using  ARM. Surface Pro X is just one of them.
 
2020-07-13 11:26:47 PM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: thermo: I have a Surface RT ARM device from 2012 sitting in a closet....

Yep, the Surface RT was actually a great machine, and was years ahead of the iPad in almost every way. It took Apple three years to copy the Surface's multitasking for example, and another year or so to copy (badly) the type cover. Still haven't got mouse or trackpad support, or the full windowed multitasking that the RT could do. Let alone user accounts, extended desktop support, expandable internal storage, proper USB support etc.

Microsofts cockup was the marketing. Apple launched the iPad as an iPad, so no one expected it to run Mac software and didn't complain about that. But MS launched the Surface as a Windows machine so people expected it to run all their Windows programs, which of course it didn't. So you had a chicken and egg situation, people didn't buy it because it couldn't run their old software, and no one wrote new software for it because no one bought it.

MS announced the ARM Surface X the year before Apple announced the ARM Mac, so how can this guy claim that "MS will have to follow Apple"? I see the reality distortion field is still in full force....

/The annoying thing for us Brits is that ARM is a British company, but we sold it to Japan's Softbank a couple of years ago.


The only problem with the surface RT was they put slow ass storage in it.
 
2020-07-13 11:28:37 PM  

cman: Theres already a Windows Arm version in existence. Microsoft has been trying to popularize it.


Yeah, but supposedly Apple has a x86 on the fly translator that is fast. Windows is a clusterfark. We also haven't actually seen in it out of a demo.
 
2020-07-13 11:29:33 PM  

Marcus Aurelius: It sounds like everyone is assuming Apple's move to ARM is a fait accompli.  It is not.


What might be the criteria for us to know when it is?
 
2020-07-13 11:31:44 PM  
The basic premise of 'in the beginning was the command line' remains true.

Apple still sells sports cars with the hoods welded shut.

Microsoft still sells minivans bolted on top of old bicycles, but I think these days the minivan is held in the back of a large SUV like the Canyonero.

And Linux is still a collection of strange hermits living in tents and giving away fully loaded tanks and APCs.
 
2020-07-13 11:38:31 PM  

PirateKing: The basic premise of 'in the beginning was the command line' remains true.

Apple still sells sports cars with the hoods welded shut.

Microsoft still sells minivans bolted on top of old bicycles, but I think these days the minivan is held in the back of a large SUV like the Canyonero.

And Linux is still a collection of strange hermits living in tents and giving away fully loaded tanks and APCs.


Except some of them have puzzleboxes on the controls and the labels are all in Ancient Sumerian.
 
2020-07-13 11:45:00 PM  
That's obviously true, which is why I'm typing this on a PowerPC based computer. snert.
 
2020-07-13 11:51:09 PM  
Where Macs go, PCs must follow

So, into the toilet?
 
2020-07-13 11:51:23 PM  
Oh, Gassee said that? Please tell us more, sir, after you regale us with stories of your tenure at Apple and Be, Inc.

Spoiler: he's basically responsible for the mess that was Apple's mediocre yet overpriced product lineup from about '88-'92. Then he ran Be which crashed and burned because he overvalued it when he tried to sell to Apple, and when they balked there was no plan B(e): as pretty as BeOS was, they never had a real shipping product to generate income and were sold off for peanuts (to Palm, i think) a few years later.

The point: Gassee is an arrogant ass who ruins everything. He can be safely ignored.
 
2020-07-13 11:56:12 PM  
I think I'd like to actually see the performance that Apple squeezes out of their chips.
Also, since they will optimize MacOS for their ARM processors, the performance does not necessarily compare with other processors used in Windows machines.
AMD is killing it out there right now.
 
2020-07-13 11:56:46 PM  
Windows backwards compatibility is crazy. No way they're switching to ARM.
 
2020-07-14 12:02:14 AM  
Apple migrates to a reduced instruction set computing chip and declares it the future and that MS must follow.  Where have I heard this before?
 
2020-07-14 12:02:20 AM  
I thought that ARM was basically for small specialized machines that didn't need to do everything that a regular processor could do, which is why it is in mobile products. Whereas the regular computer processors had a ton of overhead related to being generalists built to handle, well, everything.

Has that changed? I feel like an old, here.
 
2020-07-14 12:02:57 AM  
They both have the right to bear ARMs...
 
2020-07-14 12:04:26 AM  

Abe Vigoda's Ghost: I think I'd like to actually see the performance that Apple squeezes out of their chips.
Also, since they will optimize MacOS for their ARM processors, the performance does not necessarily compare with other processors used in Windows machines.
AMD is killing it out there right now.


My guess is that the ARM CPUs that Apple puts in their Macs will essentially be "MacOS accelerators". They will have custom silicon explicitly designed to run MacOS very well.

But...they won't be as fast as AMD/Intel CPUs when it comes to actual number-crunching. Which is the real problem. The OS itself doesn't straing modern CPUs. It's everything else.

Still, I suppose it's possible that Apple is building a *massively* upgraded ARM CPU that uses all the tricks that Intel/AMD use to boost performance. If they are willing to sacrifice power-efficiency, it's definitely possible. The question is, can they make a really fast ARM CPU that is as power efficient as a comparable Intel/AMD offering? ARM has always been the "power efficiency" champ because it simply isn't anywhere nearly as powerful as Intel/AMD.

What's interesting is that Intel/AMD have shown that instruction set doesn't matter . Switching to ARM doesn't gain Apple much if they have to throw out its "simplicity" in order to boost performance. Except, of course, that they will control their entire supply chain.
 
2020-07-14 12:06:08 AM  
Oh, and as for Microsoft switching to ARM...no way. The performance isn't there, and the compatibility isn't there.

The *entire point* of Windows is that you can run 30-year-old software on it, using modern hardware.
 
2020-07-14 12:10:25 AM  
The beauty of modern x86 is that basically it's a front-end interface to a black box: you're running instructions devised in the '80s on ever faster and more complex systems that run their own special code behind the magic curtain of the x86 interpreter. You could change your internal architecture as much as you want and nobody would know since it still runs the same x86 code on top.

Best idea: a custom chip with an x86 engine in front of an ARM core that is also exposed to the system. If code is x86, it runs through the front-end before going to the ARM core for final execution, just like in modern x86 processors. If it's ARM code, it goes straight to the ARM core for execution. BOBW: full backward compatibility and fully featured ARM functionality on demand. IBM kind of already pioneered this with a combo x86/PPC chip for Socket 7 back in the '90s but dropped it because Microsoft supposedly wouldn't support it.
 
2020-07-14 12:13:45 AM  
A quick search showed me this:

Windows 10 on ARM documentation

Maybe someone should share that link with the former Apple guy.

/ stupid article is stupid
 
2020-07-14 12:19:13 AM  

BolloxReader: I thought that ARM was basically for small specialized machines that didn't need to do everything that a regular processor could do, which is why it is in mobile products. Whereas the regular computer processors had a ton of overhead related to being generalists built to handle, well, everything.

Has that changed? I feel like an old, here.


Not necessarily.

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-07-14 12:19:50 AM  
Apple has considerable experience and a huge codebase with ARM architecture. I'm sure this transition will be as seamless as a major change like this can be. MS will not be able to follow (and has already failed once.)
 
2020-07-14 12:20:46 AM  

JasonOfOrillia: Apple migrates to a reduced instruction set computing chip and declares it the future and that MS must follow.  Where have I heard this before?


Well everyone sort of did: AMD's entire lineup since the K5 has used an x86-on-RISC architecture. Same with Intel since the P6 architecture. They're like Tootsie Pops: x86 on the outside, RISC in the middle.
 
2020-07-14 12:24:21 AM  
Let's face it: this push for ARM is by clueless buzzword execs who want to save BILLIONS OF DOLLARS by not having to write separate desktop apps, on the thinking that if desktops and mobile both run ARM you get a desktop app for free.

Microsoft, curiously, seems to have partially learned its lesson after they tried to unify Windows 8 and Windows Phone, and realized desktop users don't want their desktop or its applications to look like a cellphone.  It seems that Apple will have to learn the hard way themselves, as some inflated-ego executive seems likely to fiat the use of ARM because everything but mobile is SOOOO DEAD.  Even Mac users, who never question the Aesthetic Primacy of the Apple, aren't going to settle for a desktop that looks like a cellphone.
 
2020-07-14 12:25:27 AM  

PirateKing: The basic premise of 'in the beginning was the command line' remains true.

Apple still sells sports cars with the hoods welded shut.

Microsoft still sells minivans bolted on top of old bicycles, but I think these days the minivan is held in the back of a large SUV like the Canyonero.

And Linux is still a collection of strange hermits living in tents and giving away fully loaded tanks and APCs.


My dad loved the Apple IIe because he could program them in machine language.  I remember visiting him when he had five of them hotwired together.  He was really pissed when Apple stopped providing support for people like him.
 
2020-07-14 12:41:03 AM  

Gordon Bennett: BolloxReader: I thought that ARM was basically for small specialized machines that didn't need to do everything that a regular processor could do, which is why it is in mobile products. Whereas the regular computer processors had a ton of overhead related to being generalists built to handle, well, everything.

Has that changed? I feel like an old, here.

Not necessarily.

[Fark user image image 850x637]


Maybe I'm just out of my element here, I have no idea what I'm looking at except an old desktop. Mostly I know about ARM from being in the Surface that failed in the marketplace but succeeded in other mobile devices.
 
zez
2020-07-14 12:45:57 AM  

Raoul Eaton: PirateKing: The basic premise of 'in the beginning was the command line' remains true.

Apple still sells sports cars with the hoods welded shut.

Microsoft still sells minivans bolted on top of old bicycles, but I think these days the minivan is held in the back of a large SUV like the Canyonero.

And Linux is still a collection of strange hermits living in tents and giving away fully loaded tanks and APCs.

My dad loved the Apple IIe because he could program them in machine language.  I remember visiting him when he had five of them hotwired together.  He was really pissed when Apple stopped providing support for people like him.


So how is your dad, Mr. Steve Wozniak doing these days?
 
2020-07-14 12:46:39 AM  

BolloxReader: Gordon Bennett: BolloxReader: I thought that ARM was basically for small specialized machines that didn't need to do everything that a regular processor could do, which is why it is in mobile products. Whereas the regular computer processors had a ton of overhead related to being generalists built to handle, well, everything.

Has that changed? I feel like an old, here.

Not necessarily.

[Fark user image image 850x637]

Maybe I'm just out of my element here, I have no idea what I'm looking at except an old desktop. Mostly I know about ARM from being in the Surface that failed in the marketplace but succeeded in other mobile devices.


ARM originally stood for "Acorn RISC Machine". The computer pictured is an Acorn Archimedes PC, and it used an ARM CPU.

They were fairly popular in England in the late 80s. Especially in schools. And they were pretty powerful, too.

Take a look at RiscOS (the OS they used). It's interesting, and is kind of an "alternate take" on the standard GUI we're used to these days. Very drag-and-drop oriented.
 
2020-07-14 12:48:46 AM  
Company A does something and it fails or has middling success.

Apple does the same thing Company A did, but refines it and it is successful.

Company A redoes what they did first, building on what Apple did.

End result in public perception:  Company A copied Apple.
 
2020-07-14 12:49:02 AM  

BolloxReader: Maybe I'm just out of my element here, I have no idea what I'm looking at except an old desktop.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acorn_A​r​chimedes
 
2020-07-14 12:59:46 AM  

sensitive yet dangerous: The point: Gassee is an arrogant ass who ruins everything. He can be safely ignored.


Came here for Gassee-bag's bloviation, leaving happily.
 
2020-07-14 1:09:51 AM  
Will ARM Macs still have that secret computer-within-a-computer for the NSA 1337 h@xx0r d00d2 to backdoor?
 
2020-07-14 1:16:26 AM  

Raoul Eaton: PirateKing: The basic premise of 'in the beginning was the command line' remains true.

Apple still sells sports cars with the hoods welded shut.

Microsoft still sells minivans bolted on top of old bicycles, but I think these days the minivan is held in the back of a large SUV like the Canyonero.

And Linux is still a collection of strange hermits living in tents and giving away fully loaded tanks and APCs.

My dad loved the Apple IIe because he could program them in machine language.  I remember visiting him when he had five of them hotwired together.  He was really pissed when Apple stopped providing support for people like him.


Apple produced the 2 series for 17 years and supported them for another 3 after.

That is a good farking run.

/disclaimer I work for Apple.
 
2020-07-14 1:26:36 AM  

realmolo: BolloxReader: Gordon Bennett: BolloxReader: I thought that ARM was basically for small specialized machines that didn't need to do everything that a regular processor could do, which is why it is in mobile products. Whereas the regular computer processors had a ton of overhead related to being generalists built to handle, well, everything.

Has that changed? I feel like an old, here.

Not necessarily.

[Fark user image image 850x637]

Maybe I'm just out of my element here, I have no idea what I'm looking at except an old desktop. Mostly I know about ARM from being in the Surface that failed in the marketplace but succeeded in other mobile devices.

ARM originally stood for "Acorn RISC Machine". The computer pictured is an Acorn Archimedes PC, and it used an ARM CPU.

They were fairly popular in England in the late 80s. Especially in schools. And they were pretty powerful, too.

Take a look at RiscOS (the OS they used). It's interesting, and is kind of an "alternate take" on the standard GUI we're used to these days. Very drag-and-drop oriented.


Thanks, I read about the things you mention and I appreciate your time. I'm definitely out of my element, but I picked up a few new things I could integrate into my understanding.
 
2020-07-14 1:27:43 AM  
People are gonna yell at me, but I've been running the same Windows 7 install on my work computer since 2012. Even after cloning the drive and slapping it in another computer.

All I ask is that the OS runs my programs and stays out of my way. Beyond that, I couldn't give a shiat less. I'm not running a server with sensitive data over here and letting every Brenda do her ebay shopping on the damn thing.
 
2020-07-14 1:49:58 AM  

DogParkSniper: People are gonna yell at me, but I've been running the same Windows 7 install on my work computer since 2012. Even after cloning the drive and slapping it in another computer.

All I ask is that the OS runs my programs and stays out of my way. Beyond that, I couldn't give a shiat less. I'm not running a server with sensitive data over here and letting every Brenda do her ebay shopping on the damn thing.


Ah, but unless you're running some fairly serious combinations of security stuff, you may well be running Brenda's botnet for her.
 
2020-07-14 1:54:57 AM  
Former Office and Windows head honcho Stephen Sinofsky had the best reply to this article.

Microsoft can't possibly switch to ARM until they can buy an ARM chip that has the same performance as Apple's custom chips.

Last year's iPhone out performs Qualcomm's best 2 to 1.
 
2020-07-14 2:00:24 AM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: Yep, the Surface RT was actually a great machine, and was years ahead of the iPad in almost every way.


The Surface RT was a master class in how to do everything wrong.

It was a Windows tablet that couldn't run any legacy x86 software, only supported (mostly nonexistent) Metro Apps, and was slow as a dog to boot.

They lost a billion dollars trying to push that turkey.
 
2020-07-14 2:01:09 AM  
Apple has wet dreams over ARM processors because it means that on new machines that could totally restrict all new software to their own walled garden, just like iOS. It'd be pretty on brand for them too.

The new benchmarks of the A12Z show that the new Intels in the MBP outperform them at 400mhz less per core, by about 40-50%. They'll be supporting Intel's for a minimum of 5 years though, so this will probably be the last generation of x86 mac computers.
 
2020-07-14 2:45:25 AM  

Carter Pewterschmidt: thermo: I have a Surface RT ARM device from 2012 sitting in a closet....

Yep, the Surface RT was actually a great machine, and was years ahead of the iPad in almost every way. It took Apple three years to copy the Surface's multitasking for example, and another year or so to copy (badly) the type cover. Still haven't got mouse or trackpad support, or the full windowed multitasking that the RT could do. Let alone user accounts, extended desktop support, expandable internal storage, proper USB support etc.

Microsofts cockup was the marketing. Apple launched the iPad as an iPad, so no one expected it to run Mac software and didn't complain about that. But MS launched the Surface as a Windows machine so people expected it to run all their Windows programs, which of course it didn't. So you had a chicken and egg situation, people didn't buy it because it couldn't run their old software, and no one wrote new software for it because no one bought it.

MS announced the ARM Surface X the year before Apple announced the ARM Mac, so how can this guy claim that "MS will have to follow Apple"? I see the reality distortion field is still in full force....

/The annoying thing for us Brits is that ARM is a British company, but we sold it to Japan's Softbank a couple of years ago.


iPad OS has had proper mouse and keyboard for a few months now.
 
2020-07-14 2:48:24 AM  

phimuskapsi: Apple has wet dreams over ARM processors because it means that on new machines that could totally restrict all new software to their own walled garden, just like iOS. It'd be pretty on brand for them too.

The new benchmarks of the A12Z show that the new Intels in the MBP outperform them at 400mhz less per core, by about 40-50%. They'll be supporting Intel's for a minimum of 5 years though, so this will probably be the last generation of x86 mac computers.


Apple moved from PowerPC to Intel because PowerPC generated too much heat for a laptop.  Remember all those XBox 360's with PowerPC chips melting down?  That's why Apple switched.  People were moving from desktops to laptops and they needed a cooler chip.Now Intel has chips that produce way too much heat on top of having stagnant performance, so Apple is going to move again, for the exact same reason.Their iPhone chips are already in the same ballpark as Intel and AMD without needing a fan at all.It'll be interesting to see what kind of performance they can get when they are allowed to design a chip that doesn't have to throttle down due to the lack of a fan and has a laptop sized battery.
 
2020-07-14 2:52:39 AM  
Subby missed the Unlikely tag, accidentally selected the Obvious tag.  It is okay.  We all make these silly mistakes sometimes.
 
2020-07-14 4:07:37 AM  

BolloxReader: I thought that ARM was basically for small specialized machines that didn't need to do everything that a regular processor could do, which is why it is in mobile products. Whereas the regular computer processors had a ton of overhead related to being generalists built to handle, well, everything.

Has that changed? I feel like an old, here.


Here's the thing, the instruction set that processors do rarely matters for what we consider features and capabilities. Both types of processors can push bits around and and that will translate into video playback or game playing or number crunching or simulations etc. if you can push bits and add them and branch, you're Turing complete baby and can do literally everything with a little elbow grease.

X86 had some instructions that are probably made to make certain things faster, like encryption or media playback. I don't know, I'm not a processor guy. I program way above that level and my code gets complied for x86 and ARM simultaneously. It does the same thing. I've never needed to think about it because the libraries and OS layers take care of everything and are both feature complete.

When push comes to shove I doubt either type of processor will post massive gains over the other.  ARM just seems to be designed to dissipate less heat. Computations per watt seems to be the end all be all here.
 
2020-07-14 4:27:38 AM  
So TFAuthor doesn't choose to acknowledge the Surface Pro X?
 
2020-07-14 5:18:13 AM  
Microsoft will not be able to sit back and watch Apple take the lead with the most powerful PCs on the market, and nor will third-party brands making Windows machines.

At this point, almost no-one cares.

I'm typing this on a 6 year old machine, which I do development work on. I talked over a college machine for my daughter, and she likes my Thinkpad, so we got a recon 3 year old ex-lease one. "any problems" "no, its just fine".

Apple's thing was more about the trouble they had with Intel chips and that controlling the silicon makes life easier for them. It also means they can do a lot more code sharing with iOS. 

The Windows thing of backwards compatibility is a very big farking deal. Apple can just go breaking shiat every 5 years because people run like 20 applications and the manufacturers just suck up having to recode for Carbon or ARM or whatever, but Windows is hugely about some weird obscure software in a company running 15 years after it was written. And those companies would rather pay for another server to go in the rack than have it break.
 
2020-07-14 5:27:07 AM  

agent00pi: So TFAuthor doesn't choose to acknowledge the Surface Pro X?


Is that the $1300 one that can't run 64-bit x86 apps?
 
2020-07-14 5:35:28 AM  

farkeruk: Microsoft will not be able to sit back and watch Apple take the lead with the most powerful PCs on the market, and nor will third-party brands making Windows machines.

At this point, almost no-one cares.

I'm typing this on a 6 year old machine, which I do development work on. I talked over a college machine for my daughter, and she likes my Thinkpad, so we got a recon 3 year old ex-lease one. "any problems" "no, its just fine".

Apple's thing was more about the trouble they had with Intel chips and that controlling the silicon makes life easier for them. It also means they can do a lot more code sharing with iOS. 

The Windows thing of backwards compatibility is a very big farking deal. Apple can just go breaking shiat every 5 years because people run like 20 applications and the manufacturers just suck up having to recode for Carbon or ARM or whatever, but Windows is hugely about some weird obscure software in a company running 15 years after it was written. And those companies would rather pay for another server to go in the rack than have it break.


Yeah, all good points.

I remember c64 being an awesome compy, but I think that shows my age now.

Also reminded that the other processors made in the last 40 years have been good, others not so good (citrix)

After mine dies, which I don't thing will (thanks to an engineering sample from Intel) I'm going to run a threadripper.

Then with all the recent vulns because of preventive code execution, it feels like I can't trust any computing device, not even my phones.
 
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