Hardware preservation is the path to heaven

For my 12th birthday in 2015 I got my first desktop ever. It was very exciting back then to have a massive hardware upgrade, which was very worth it. I could now finally play all the triple A games I wanted to. Despite being a massive hardware upgrade, the hardware itself was very modest, it was mid range for that time. Fast forward a bit and I feel the need to get a new GPU, as graphics were progressing too fast. The planets aligned and I got an opportunity to upgrade my GTX 750 TI with a GTX 1060 a year later. I was very happy, and felt that I now could keep my GPU for a long time, I just didn’t know how long.

I expected to keep this new GTX 1060 for around 4 years, but I ended up keeping it for much, much longer. Fast forward to 2019 and I feel the need for a CPU and RAM upgrade to compensate for my heavy workflows in digital media rendering and encoding. I get this upgrade and am very satisfied, but I can’t stop noticing how my Windows system of that time still wasn’t very responsive. Sure, it was more responsive now, but it wasn’t nearly as light and fast as it could be.

Our original impulse is to upgrade hardware with the necessities for faster processing being seemingly forever increasing, but sooner or later we notice that the necessity for faster hardware is higher than ever even for tasks that are exactly the same as they were 10 years ago, such as clicking buttons and opening applications on a desktop GUI. We then see that hardware deprecation is more common than ever, with people upgrading their GPUs every 1-2 years, and macbooks being seen as obsolete after 5 years of life. It’s very stressful and bad for the environment and our money to feel that we have to frequently upgrade our hardware, that is more expensive than ever.

Fast forward again to 2021 and I begin using Linux, and very quickly I begin daily driving it. Suddenly, all that necessity for faster hardware is gone, and suddenly the resource usage is incredibly low. Everything is now instant, fast, lightweight, responsive, etc. The necessity for hardware upgrade is simply no longer there.

At that time, I came to the conclusion that it isn’t that hard after all to keep software light and fast, while being modern and modern-looking. We are given the idea that we must upgrade our hardware so frequently, harming our wallets and harming the environment, under the name of “progress”. What they call progress is nothing more than bloat.

Today I am nearly 21, and the games I play the most are from the 2000s or 2010s. I do not feel the need to upgrade my GPU. That necessity is so little that I actually can daily drive the Iris Xe iGPU instead of my GTX 1060 without much sacrifice, despite being a much slower GPU. I run a lightweight Linux system with Xfce, and little bloat in the background. Xfce is so fast and lightweight that it’s still very responsive even for very old computers.

Hardware preservation is the path to heaven. You do not need to worry about deprecation, or having to buy the latest shiny thing in the market. All that stress goes away. You spend much less money over the years and you produce less electronic waste. A simple switch of operating system, games and environment could make a huge difference between 5 year old hardware being too slow to 10 year old hardware being fast and responsive, and then your necessity for hardware upgrade goes away just like that. You are now satisfied with what you have, and you also avoid the risks of falling into consumerism for entertainment. Man is enslaved by the materialism of modern society, depriving him of the simplest pleasures of life.

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I think every computer I have ever owned has either been an ex-government/business or from some other second hand retailer. Although there are some games I can’t play and some I would like to be able to play with better graphics I am pretty patient with games I buy and often play them years and years after they’ve been released (Plus my favourite games still to this day are pretty old Tetris being my favorite)

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well-said, sir or madam. let me also add that not being rich makes a savvy computer user very resourceful about buying/acquiring hardware…

that’s utopia right now! would be nice, there’s also role of peripherals and compatibility although I think that quibble is minor.

I will say until now, I had always seen hardware/software as two very different entities, but you married them up well.

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tetris still my fave. and galaga.

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