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Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Naked Computing


Nothing to do with using computers in the nude.- nothing against it, but it’s not for me - Instead it has everything to do with motorbiking.  I shall explain.

The term ‘naked computing’ occurred to me the other day as I looked about me in that excellent computing shop, Creative Computing in Shawlands, and I was reminded of why I got my particular motorbike; a Triumph Street Triple.

Back in the days of black and white TV, motorcycling was pretty dangerous thing to do:  it still is, but compared to those days, riding a motorbike is as risky as a walk in the park.  With drum brakes that had the stopping power of a wet sponge, suspension so primitive it made a penny farthing look sophisticated, zero protection and engines so leaky, bikes left behind a slick of oil that the Captain of the Exon Valdez would be proud of.  Respect must go to those ‘Ton Up’ guys who burst through 100mph (the ton)  limit on these machines.

Honda Goldwing 2012 49 2560x1600
Honda Goldwing
Gradually technology improved and more and more bits were added to the basic bike.  First hydraulic brakes, then disk brakes, improved suspensions, better engines: anything really that made bikes faster, corner better, stop quicker.  Then came extras which  focussed on comfort: fairing’s to give improved weather protection, electric windshields, heated grips and saddles. Finally, other extras developed like ‘on bike communications’, entertainment centres and soon before you could say Triumph Bonneville, overblown monstrosities like the Honda Goldwing emerged.

2012 Triumph Speed Triple R
Triumph Speed Triple

Then those smart chaps at Triumph realised that perhaps everything had gone too far.   It was time to go back to basics.  They stripped everything away that didn’t contribute to speed or better handling and produced the Triumph Speed Triple, the big brother to the Street Triple.  Essentially the Speed Triple is a big engine with wheels, horrendously fast and agile and so was born the craze for ‘Naked Bikes’ where hard core bikers wanted to get back to the original danger and less complicated, raw riding of the ‘Ton Up’ guys.

Liquid Cooled 'Beast' Desktop
It was this, that I was thinking of as I stood in Creative Computing, looking around at extreme machines like Alienware gaming desktops, complete with every single hardware  device you could imagine, including neon lights and transparent cases. There were even computers with processors cooled by huge cooling fans and mineral oil.  Perhaps its time to get back to the raw essentials of computing.

Lets go ‘naked’! Lets junk the over the top cases; get rid of the hair dresser colours, loose the unnecessary keyboards and put to sleep the rabid mice with more buttons than a TK Max fashion store.

Raspberry Pi Computer
Lets go back in time and join in spirit those original pioneers of computing who led the way in changing the way we live by thinking of new things and not bother with messing around with mere style.  Let’s create new content.  And what better way to begin, than with Raspberry Pi.  What do think?  Do you want to go naked?

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