For the most part I don’t need a powerful desktop PC. I mostly use it as a terminal interface to other machines or to produce the occasional spreadsheet or document in Open Office. Not exactly demanding tasks by today’s standards. Just once in a while though I want to watch a DVD or a snippet from YouTube and for that I need a graphics card. Not a mega graphics card like the kids need for their games, just something produced within the last 5 years or so. Doesn’t sound a lot to ask, but sadly it’s too much because my PC has an AGP port.
Judging by what Wikipedia has to say about AGP, I was the victim of poor timing, buying my PC a few months before AGP was superseded by PCI Express. That happened in 2004 and whilst everything else in the PC remains replaceable, the AGP card that died on me last month seems to be the last of an era. Sure I got a replacement but it’s a generation older than the one that died as demand for no longer produced stock has caused the price of Nvidia 7 series AGP cards to rocket far beyond that of a vastly more powerful modern graphics card. Now I’m stuck with a 6 series and to be honest, it sucks.
So here I am with a decent 64bit PC that seems destined to be converted to a server machine that will live under my stairs and only ever be accessed via a text console. Then again, it will consume more power than the old 32bit Athlon XP machine that’s doing a sterling job of supporting the several hundred users that access it, so why bother? Poor old PC, it seems you’ve become obsolete. Not only before your time, but also before that of your predecessors.