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InfinityVive

Why do schools buy bad PCs?

7 minutes ago, InfinityVive said:

Alright everyone

 

Thanks for clearing things up, So the school takes the spare money to either save up or spend on something else than PCs because they don't know better? the IT in my school barely knows how to do the cable work for peripherals and doesn't know how to assemble a PC, they don't even know what an SSD is (yes I am serious I once asked the IT why the PCs at our school have no SSDs) 

 

So is that why?

The remaining budget is likely used for other things, they probably get the computers donated or if the IT guy is as dense as you say he probably doesn't know what the school needs. But we can't tell you exactly, you're asking a bunch of strangers that don't even live in Egypt why the decision makers at your school decided to get those computers... How should we know? The people you should be asking are the people at the school who made that decision, not random people on the internet. Anything we say is just going to be a guess, and you seem to be set on the truth and exactly the right answer, which we cannot give you.

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You go to school to learn, not play on computers.  The computers are tools.  They do what they need to.  You keep claiming "my parents paid to get me educated" and YES, they did.  For a teacher to teach you, not play on a computer.

 

Want to play on a computer?  Get a good one for your personal use.  But a tool is a tool and if it works it still works.  You also complained in this thread about them hurting your eyes.  I'm sorry but wow.  lol.  Seriously now.


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On 5/30/2020 at 7:52 PM, InfinityVive said:

This question is really small and simple (This is NOT spam)

But ye, why do schools buy low-end PCs? My school before the pandemic was operating Pentium 4 PCs with 640x480 60 Hz CRT monitors, it struggled to even run the educational programs and it's CRT monitor actually damaged my eyes (not permanent damage though) 

So my question is, why do schools buy really really low-end PCs that struggle to even run the schools' educational programs?

Because they are cheap. It's also cheap to keep the same systems for as long as possible, hence why you had P4s.

On 5/30/2020 at 8:00 PM, InfinityVive said:

My parents pay were paying about 300$ monthly to get me educated in that school, same for the 500 students' parents in that school, so that means they earn 150,000$ every month, that's a ripoff I guess

Clearly they want to spend that money elsewhere... or just keep it. To be fair unless it's a specifically CS oriented high school it really has no need for good computers.


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I used to TA for the physics department at a University and while their computers were low-end nucs, they didn't struggle to do what was needed. They were needed to run excel, the calculator, and the software for their labs. They didn't want them to be faster because they didn't want people to try to use them to do other things on them they didn't want. Those pcs weren't even connected to the internet.

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7 minutes ago, Inelastic said:

I used to teach TA for the physics department at a University and while their computers were low-end nucs, they didn't struggle to do what was needed. They were needed to run excel, the calculator, and the software for their labs. They didn't want them to be faster because they didn't want people to try to use them to do other things on them they didn't want. Those pcs weren't even connected to the internet.

A very strong argument for limited capacity. 
 

There was a time very early in computer history when microcomputers first came out where a school computer was as powerful as anything that could be gotten.  The bare hope was there wasn’t software to do crazy garbage with them so it was still fairly safe.  They were wrong.  Kids wrote their own.  That was the era of 12 year olds breaking into the defense department and stuff.


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4 hours ago, Bombastinator said:

You might want to watch “the lock picking lawyer” if you think that thing is good for more than about 10 seconds of prevention.

If that many students were capable of picking locks and that motivated to steal hardware that way, towers would not be left out in the open as they usually are. 


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1 minute ago, BlueChinchillaEatingDorito said:

If that many students were capable of picking locks and that motivated to steal hardware that way, towers would not be left out in the open as they usually are. 

Not after they’re all broken into once anyway.  


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As far as i know in Egypt everything costs significantly less and accordingly to that wages are lower too.

But computers cost more than they do in the west so a decent PC is worth the entire salary of 2 months work.


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On 5/30/2020 at 1:52 PM, InfinityVive said:

This question is really small and simple (This is NOT spam)

But ye, why do schools buy low-end PCs? My school before the pandemic was operating Pentium 4 PCs with 640x480 60 Hz CRT monitors, it struggled to even run the educational programs and it's CRT monitor actually damaged my eyes (not permanent damage though) 

So my question is, why do schools buy really really low-end PCs that struggle to even run the schools' educational programs?

How did a CRT damage your eyes? My eye doctor claimed that looking at a screen could not damage one’s eyes.

 

That being said, they probably spent the money that they could have used for new hardware on sports programs.

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On 5/30/2020 at 10:52 AM, InfinityVive said:

This question is really small and simple (This is NOT spam)

But ye, why do schools buy low-end PCs? My school before the pandemic was operating Pentium 4 PCs with 640x480 60 Hz CRT monitors, it struggled to even run the educational programs and it's CRT monitor actually damaged my eyes (not permanent damage though) 

So my question is, why do schools buy really really low-end PCs that struggle to even run the schools' educational programs?

I assume it's because they can get better prices for a bulk school purchase depending on the company and what they are willing to send to the school district. That would explain windows 10 Education edition

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39 minutes ago, ryao said:

How did a CRT damage your eyes? My eye doctor claimed that looking at a screen could not damage one’s eyes.

 

That being said, they probably spent the money that they could have used for new hardware on sports programs.

It's probably less hurting and more like stress. There's a video up on techquicke explaining this. 

 

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My school has bought the equivalent of a nokia in the fact that you cannot break it not matter how much you try because it's so shit.

 


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3 hours ago, ryao said:

How did a CRT damage your eyes? My eye doctor claimed that looking at a screen could not damage one’s eyes.

 

 

On CRT monitors,there's a beam of electrons (like a laser pointer) going from left to right and from top to bottom heating up a layer of phosphorus which becomes white when it's hot.... that point that's white hot becomes a color element on the screen and 3 elements form a pixel (red, green, blue elements = one pixel)

As soon as the beam of electrons advances to form the next pixel or the next line, the phosphorus starts to cool down so the brightness decreases slowly ... by the time that beam reaches the bottom of the screen, the top of the screen is already less bright than the bottom, so in order to reduce fluctuations of brightness the beam has to redraw the screen lots of times a second.

Human eyes are sensitive to that flicker (that fluctuation in brightness) and it was demonstrated that a minimum of 60 hz is needed to not cause eye strain but a large percentage of people will actually need to raise that refresh rate to at least 75Hz (but preferably 85 Hz) ... at 85 Hz and above that flicker is much less noticed by human eyes.

So over time, the flicker even if barely perceived can hurt your eyes by causing the eyes muscle to strain and constantly twitch or try to focus on parts of the screen which vary in brightness and so on.

 

Another problem is that there's a bit of math involved when moving that beam of electrons left to right and top to bottom.. think of you holding a laser pointer in a fixed position in the center of a room, and trying to make dots on a wall ... in the center of the wall directly in front of the laser pointer you'll have the shortest distance between the pointer and the wall. To move to the next pixel, you have to move (rotate to the right) the pointer just a very tiny bit to position the light on next point. 

The more you move to left or right, the distance to the wall increases and you also have to rotate a tiny bit more (the angle increases) and the spot of light from the laser pointer on the wall will not be exactly a square or a circle, it will become a bit stretched.... it's simply physics.

CRT monitors have decent control over that beam but nevertheless it's not perfect, so the image you see on screen will have geometrical errors, the corners of the image will be distorted (stretched or skewed)... there's convergence issues and lots of other problems with the image generated.

Your brain notices that even though you basically get used to it, but "in the background" your eyes are still affected by those imperfections. 

And last, the technology itself is harmful, the beam of electrons that hits the phosphorus layer also produces x-rays which are harmful... that's why CRT monitors are so heavy, because the glass in the screen also has some amount of LEAD in it, to absorb and block those x ray emissions.

Nevertheless, some x rays still pass through and as you sit in front of the screen, they go through your body.

The amount of xrays is very small probably less over the course of a year, than the amount you'd be hit when you go to a doctor to get teeth xrays but it's not zero.

 

In contrast, LCD monitors have fixed pixels, each pixel is formed of 3 cells of liquid film which becomes opaque or transparent (letting light from behind the lcd go through, and this light is always on) depending on the amount of electricity going to it.

So there's no need to constantly refresh the screen like with CRT, the actual brightess is formed by a light that's always on behind the lcd screen. The lcd cells become transparent or opaque and stay that way until they're changed again.

 

So there's no longer a requirement for minimum 75-85 Hz to reduce eye strain, because no brightness fluctuations, and that's why lcd monitors initially standardized on 60 hz, to make it easy to reuse lcd panels for TVs (as the tv broadcasts are in 60 Hz in US and 50 Hz in Europe)

There's also no geometric problems due to how the beam of electrons form the image, the pixels are always square and they're nicely spaced apart and you have no x-rays produced

 

So LCD monitors are better.

The first LCD monitors were not so great because of how the lcd cells were produced, how they become transparent or opaque .. the first few technologies were more transparent  when viewed from straight forward but as you moved to the sides they would become a bit semi-transparent ... so that's why the old lcd panels started to distort the colors as you looked from the sides or from top or bottom of the lcd screen.

The backlights (the white light that's always on behind the lcd screen) was also often of poorer quality ... lcd typically used fluorescent tubes (like those big ones used in stores and schools and industrial places) ... those kinds of lights are good because they last a long time and produce a uniform light over the glass, but that type of white light affects how colors are reproduced ...  you get fewer shades of red, green and blue so the images on lcd monitors can get tints of blue or green... CRT monitors reproduced colors much better.

Nowadays with IPS panels and led backlight and qled and other technologies those issues are in the past.

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It's inconvenient and can be tiring, but doesn't "damage your eyes". 

After all people used that for decades before we had LCDs...


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Posted · Original PosterOP
19 hours ago, Hakemon said:

You go to school to learn, not play on computers.  The computers are tools.  They do what they need to.  You keep claiming "my parents paid to get me educated" and YES, they did.  For a teacher to teach you, not play on a computer.

 

Want to play on a computer?  Get a good one for your personal use.  But a tool is a tool and if it works it still works.  You also complained in this thread about them hurting your eyes.  I'm sorry but wow.  lol.  Seriously now.

I don't exactly need a computer to play on at school, I just want a computer that is efficient enough for school education apps as the current computers often crash with those, also I want proper monitors as CRT 640x480 don't really cut it

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to an extend it's budget, but it's like those deals those administration does to get either a shady profit or get away with spending the least to make the best out of what they have.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
7 hours ago, Kilrah said:

It's inconvenient and can be tiring, but doesn't "damage your eyes". 

After all people used that for decades before we had LCDs...

I said it wasn't permanent damage (hopefully it wasn't permanent)

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Alright everyone

 

Thanks for clearing things up, So the school takes the spare money to either save up or spend on something else than PCs because they don't know better? the IT in my school barely knows how to do the cable work for peripherals and doesn't know how to assemble a PC, they don't even know what an SSD is (yes I am serious I once asked the IT why the PCs at our school have no SSDs) 

 

So is that why?

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Posted · Best Answer
7 minutes ago, InfinityVive said:

Alright everyone

 

Thanks for clearing things up, So the school takes the spare money to either save up or spend on something else than PCs because they don't know better? the IT in my school barely knows how to do the cable work for peripherals and doesn't know how to assemble a PC, they don't even know what an SSD is (yes I am serious I once asked the IT why the PCs at our school have no SSDs) 

 

So is that why?

The remaining budget is likely used for other things, they probably get the computers donated or if the IT guy is as dense as you say he probably doesn't know what the school needs. But we can't tell you exactly, you're asking a bunch of strangers that don't even live in Egypt why the decision makers at your school decided to get those computers... How should we know? The people you should be asking are the people at the school who made that decision, not random people on the internet. Anything we say is just going to be a guess, and you seem to be set on the truth and exactly the right answer, which we cannot give you.


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44 minutes ago, InfinityVive said:

Alright everyone

 

Thanks for clearing things up, So the school takes the spare money to either save up or spend on something else than PCs because they don't know better? the IT in my school barely knows how to do the cable work for peripherals and doesn't know how to assemble a PC, they don't even know what an SSD is (yes I am serious I once asked the IT why the PCs at our school have no SSDs) 

 

So is that why?

I’d bet some of those IT people are wondering why people are buying PCs with less storage than ten years ago. ;)

 


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1 hour ago, Zodiark1593 said:

I’d bet some of those IT people are wondering why people are buying PCs with less storage than ten years ago. ;)

 

Well from an IT School perspective, does an SSD add any value, when it's the same price to get a much larger HDD? Or cheaper to get a similar sized (or even still larger) HDD.

 

I work for a Public Library and only just this year (likely now next year) would we have been replacing our public access computers to have SSD's in them.

 

Obviously I understand the benefits of an SSD - every PC I use has one. And for staff machines, I've been pushing for SSD's for years now, and most of the newer laptops we've bought have had SSD's in them. But the Public Access computers are a much harder sell. Typically if we spend more on the PC's (due to, say, adding an SSD), that means we have less money for other projects and infrastructure. It's a balancing game. And we're fairly well funded.

 

A school - especially a school with really bad funding issues, is likely to not purchase SSD equipped PC's for a long time yet. Even if the IT person is fully aware of the benefits of an SSD, it's an almost impossible sell when you need to convince people who aren't tech savvy, and your budget is tiny, so adding SSD's means replacing less computers.


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On 5/31/2020 at 2:00 PM, Bombastinator said:

Or are being moved by google anyway.  Google is giving away large amounts of hardware.  They’re still doing all the datamining stuff though so it’s one more “free” thing from google that emphatically isn’t.  It’s angering a lot of people. 

Remember in the 1980s and 1990s when people thought a struggling, constantly near-death Apple was insane for giving away large quantities of computer equipment to schools, for budding millennials to grow up with?

 

How'd that work out for them?


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2 minutes ago, aisle9 said:

Remember in the 1980s and 1990s when people thought a struggling, constantly near-death Apple was insane for giving away large quantities of computer equipment to schools, for budding millennials to grow up with?

 

How'd that work out for them?

Oh it’s got it’s points.  Apple wasn’t data mining the children though.


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3 minutes ago, Bombastinator said:

Oh it’s got it’s points.  Apple wasn’t data mining the children though.

Fair point. Google is doing a great job of following Apple's model, though. The issue for them is that Apple was putting its products in front of a generation that wanted to learn with them. Google's are going in front of a generation that thinks a Chromebook shell makes excellent bread for a Tide Pod sandwich.


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4 minutes ago, aisle9 said:

Fair point. Google is doing a great job of following Apple's model, though. The issue for them is that Apple was putting its products in front of a generation that wanted to learn with them. Google's are going in front of a generation that thinks a Chromebook shell makes excellent bread for a Tide Pod sandwich.

I dunno.  I wore purple parachute pants in high school (not proud of that one) 80’s kids did stupid shit too.  I even remember a “loud shorts” fashion.  Maybe that was just my high school.  I kinda hope so.  It was awful.   If google wasn’t running game on children there wouldn’t be a problem.  


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5 minutes ago, aisle9 said:

Fair point. Google is doing a great job of following Apple's model, though. The issue for them is that Apple was putting its products in front of a generation that wanted to learn with them. Google's are going in front of a generation that thinks a Chromebook shell makes excellent bread for a Tide Pod sandwich.

Let's be clear, most kids don't and never have intentionally eat tide pods. Every generation has dumbass kids - don't think yours was exempt.

 

Putting Chromebooks in schools isn't inherently a bad thing, so long as it fits the needs of the students (data mining aside, I think that's actually illegal in the US to data mine children, even if it's happening).

 

Apple computers were (and still are) extremely capable machines when they were putting computers into schools in the 90's and 00's. Much more capable than  Chromebook - but also the requirements have changed - much more of what a student does can be done via a web app or a Chromebook app.


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