Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Computer Cycle

Something I was curious about while visiting CUA was the lifetime of their computers and how that factored into upgrade costs, etc. I learned that rather than purchase a new generation of computers every 4-6yrs, they do something that is a little more innovative.

Faculty and staff computers are purchased at the same time, and they're all new, upgraded, and up-to-date. Once they hit about the four year mark they become lab computers, and then similar models are purchased to replace remaining lab computers. Faculty & staff then get new computers, and so it becomes a "hand-me-down" cycle.

The result being that those who use them the most always have new(ish) computers to work on, and the lab ones serve their purpose of training, learning, research, and web browsing. It's wonderfully efficient as costs are reduced but the needs of the community are still met.

The only exception to this that I saw were the public computers which are open to patrons other than CUA students, staff, and faculty. I only took a good look at the Apple computers, which seemed to be about 5-6 years old, 1.66GHz and running OSX 10.4.11. They can technically be upgraded to at least Snow Leopard (OSX 10.6) as they fit the specifications and are Intel Core Duos. They should also be upgraded as they are now considered "Vintage" and unrepairable by Apple-certified technicians, however if they are still functioning and solely used for web browsing, e-mail, and so on... "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

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