What do my feet have to do with prime numbers?
Today, it has been pretty cold. It is about 66°F inside right now. I do not want to turn the heater on, since it’s not that cold yet.
So my solution is to install Prime95, and once again take part in the “Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search.”
In case you’re wondering why this would help, I’ll explain. I’m running an 1.2GHz AMD Athlon Thunderbird, which is one of the hottest-running processors out there. Running Prime95 raises my processor’s temperature from about 108°F to about 125°F. This is still within safe operating temperatures for this processor (apparently the processor core will not melt until about 194°F), but it raises the temperature of the air around my computer just enough that my feet are no longer cold.
On a related topic, when looking for a page to link to describing the Athlon Thunderbird, I learned from the wonderful Wikipedia that the Athlon Thunderbird was “AMD’ most successful part since the Am386DX-40 ten years earlier.” I actually owned an Am386DX-40, and even ran Windows 95 on it at a reasonable speed (although my previous OS, IBM OS/2 ran much better [but it did not support 32-bit Windows programs]).
I was actually told (or, argued) that there was no such thing as a 40MHz 386 processor, but that person must have only been aware of Intel’s i386 (only available in speeds up to 33MHz). My brother has a similar story about his 10MHz 286, which simply did not exist, according to one of his substitute teachers. Some people are so stubborn in what they think they know. I guess nobody wants a kid to know more about a subject one has studied in detail.
Also of interest is the history of the Am386DX, over which Intel bullied AMD in court (AMD rightfully won, by the way). I owned the Am386DX-40 processor before I knew anything about Intel or AMD (I just bought what was cheap), and I went on to own three processors (one IBM, two Intel) before switching exclusively to AMD. Now that I know the whole story (thanks to the Internet), I’m proud that I owned such an early AMD processor.
By the way, the IBM processor, a 5x86C (based on the Cyrix Cx5x86—the more ‘x’ the better), sucked. It ran at 100MHz, but it performed calculations about half as fast as my brother’s Pentium-60, despite what many benchmarks claimed. After the Pentium, it was a while before any non-Intel processor compared in speed. Thankfully there is good competition these days.
Beware the Muuj
Comments on this post are closed.