Monday, March 25, 2013

SIDE EFFECTS directed by Steven Soderbergh


The last and what is supposed to be the last theatrical film by director Steven Soderbergh. Here the trailer:

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

AMOUR directed by Michael Haneke



The last film by director Michael Haneke. It surprise me realizeing that the basque actor Ramon Agirre was among the cast. A good sad movie about life. here the trailer:

Sunday, March 10, 2013

HP workstations


I own an HP 6710b laptop since summer 2007 and it's incredibly amazing how, more than five years later , still works so well. I must say I have upgraded it over the time. I first upgraded its HardDrive in 2010 from the original 160GB one to a bigger 500GB one. Finally on summer 2012 when Solid State drives became  affordable I jumped into  a 128GB SDD that made my laptop run as never before. This make me externalize all my  Data to bigger 1TB and 2TB portable HDD's, making my data management  much more convenient.  The good part of upgrading a HardDrive is also that the old one can be re-used as an external drive with a proper case, so you can still use it to keep your external data. This way you don't need  throw away or sell this component. 

In this period I also doubled  the RAM of the system from 2GB to 4GB. Luckily this laptop came with a Intel dual core proccessor that supports 64bit Operating Systems. Even it came from factory with the recently released windows Vista, I had been using Windows XP until 2010 when Windows 7 came out and made the upgrade, becoming the OS I am still using today.

With new SSD harddrive, the 64bit OS and the newest Adobe Creative Suite software, my computer can handle RED camera's RAW video files natively without even have to transcode them. That is something mind blowing specially as I still remember how a few years ago when I couldn't even install Adobe's Premiere Pro CS4 because I was  running 32bit Windows XPin this same machine. I even remember perfectly the troubles I had running my CANON 550D's native h.264 videos to play them smoothly back in 2010. Now everything seems to flow  much better just with some minor hardware upgrades (150€ in RAM and the SSD HardDrive). But to be true what really marks the difference is undoubtedly the Software, The OS and the Applications running that take a better advance of the  hardware in the systems, new or old.

It's weird nowadays to find something that works better when its older that when it was brand new. Everything seems to be designed  in a way that when broken or worn out you better throw it and buy a new one instead of trying to fix it or upgrade it. Computers, cars and cell phones just to mention some expensive products we use in the daily basis are the ones that made us realize how true is this programmed obsolescence reality in wich we live. It's particularly sad that this happens with technology products so much. Technology evolves everyday so even you own an old computer that works well, there would always be a new one, lighter, with higher resolution screen and faster that you would like to buy in case you can afford to. SO why make it hard to people to fix theri old stuff? What if you cannot buy a new one? In many cases you hardly can upgrade your old machine to make it work decently for a couple of years more because the manufactured designed it in a way you can't do so.

In this sense it's great to see the way the engineers of the HP workstations keep on developing their products. You just have to compare the video above with the iFixit teardown manual of the Retina Macbook to upgrade it or fix it. Maybe is because they are different computers, one more focused for the unprofessional world and the other one more for the home consumer. It's confusing because, the Apple product has a 'Pro' in it's name but anyway, in my opinion everyone should be able to open it's stuff with certain easiness, even it's just to clean the dust that gets in it, something I do twice a year with my laptop thanks it's been designed cleverly to do so. Just open some cover and voila!. the battery too is easy to change, last week I bought an inexpensive Anker battery (30$ in Amazon) that works fine and gave me no trouble and an iGo multylaptop charger ($38 in Amazon), as the original charger started to fail. I hope I can keep on making my projects in this computer for a long time. And when I need more computing power I hope to find one as reliable as this.

I think design is much more than  aesthetics, ease of use, materials, quality, price etc...Desing it's about trying to think almost every parameter related with the consumer and the product and came up with the better solution for the user. After all it's up to the final user of the product to decide if the designer has done a good job designing a certain product or not and will decide to come back and buy again.