Linked by fran on Thu 4th Nov 2010 22:43 UTC
Mac OS X Steve Jobs recently told a Mac user, enquiring about the probability of USB3 on Macs in the near feature, that the technology is not ready because Intel has yet to adopt the platform. A recent rumour slated Intel to integrate USB3 it into its chipsets by no earlier than 2012. LaCie electronics, however, is not prepared to wait around until 2012, and has just released an USB3.0 driver for Mac OS X. Just one catch: it only works with LaCie's hardware.
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RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by kaiwai on Thu 4th Nov 2010 23:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

And yet how widely used is Firewire these days? Or eSata, for that matter - 90% of external disks are USB-only, and you'll pay quite a bit extra for eSATA or Firewire support, if you can even find them.

Superior technology doesn't always win...


The reason why it didn't win is because firewire has a higher standard to which vendors must abide by - in other words they can't do the dodgy corner cutting that one could otherwise get away with in the case of USB2 and thus reduce the cost to them at the consumer.

Early on in the USB development you had a split between those who wanted the hardware to do more of the work and a second group who argued that it would be better done in software then let the CPU carry the load - since the performance of CPU's are improving rapidly the performance hit should be unnoticeable.

Unfortunately the industry is filled with corner cutting, from 'winmodems' to 'winprinters' to simply aweful promises when it comes to USB technology simply so some dick can save 5cents per unit.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by Delgarde on Fri 5th Nov 2010 00:21 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
Delgarde Member since:
2008-08-19

And because USB is both cheap and "good enough". That's a *very* hard combination to beat - there might be better alternatives, but USB is cheap, and doesn't get any complaints from the majority of users.

Manufacturers aren't going to go with a more expensive option just to please a tiny proportion of users. Not when they can call that a "high end" option, and charge you extra for it.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by Laurence on Fri 5th Nov 2010 12:25 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

You talk as if Firewire never cut corners.

Firewire reads and writes to the system memory which allows anyone with physical access to a machine to perform all manner of hacks to a Firewire-enabled system. Now while I appreciate that direct memory access was intended for speed boosts, did the developers not think that this was perhaps a flawed shortcut in terms of system security?

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Comment by Kroc
by kaiwai on Fri 5th Nov 2010 23:30 in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Kroc"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

You talk as if Firewire never cut corners.

Firewire reads and writes to the system memory which allows anyone with physical access to a machine to perform all manner of hacks to a Firewire-enabled system. Now while I appreciate that direct memory access was intended for speed boosts, did the developers not think that this was perhaps a flawed shortcut in terms of system security?


If someone has access to your machine - you're fucked already; all the gymnastics in the world won't change the reality that the would-be hardware hijacker as you by your balls even if you didn't have a firewire device. To bring up the DMA issue sounds like the death throws of desperation than concerns about genuine security concerns of Ms Sixpack having her machine hacked whilst surfing the internet all because of a firewire port.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by Kroc
by raboof on Sun 7th Nov 2010 13:21 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Kroc"
raboof Member since:
2005-07-24

the industry is filled with corner cutting, from 'winmodems' to 'winprinters'

Actually, despite the somewhat derogatory terms, I always thought making the devices dumber and putting the logic in the software as much as possible was actually a pretty good idea...

I've owned both 'win'modems and -printers that worked just fine under linux.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by Kroc
by Neolander on Sun 7th Nov 2010 14:55 in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by Kroc"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Sure, but only as long as a minimal amount of logic is kept in the hardware so that it is accessed by software via a standard interface.

Modern graphics, sound, and WiFi hardware, with their "one driver per vendor/hardware" philosophy, are just too much of a pain.

Edited 2010-11-07 15:05 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2