AMD vs Ryzen vs Apple Silicon, and WWDC.

I was watching a benchmark video last night which compared an Intel Core i7-12700H to an Apple M1 Pro:

I think what it goes to show is that for most people when it comes to performance the idea of putting a device under constant strain don’t really resemble how most people use their computer. Most people use their computer in such a way that they don’t stress their CPU and when they really do push the CPU to its max then it tends to be short periods of time – small bursts of processing required then the speed ramps back down to as low as it can or in the case of the new SoCs from Apple and Intel the load is moved over to the high efficiency cores until extra grunt is needed. Don’t get me wrong, I think that the Apple Silicon SoC is great but I think it is also important to understand your workflow before running off to buy something that is the fastest but will throttle during a long work load. One of the common pieces of advise is not to waste ones time getting an i9 in a laptop form because the amount of heat it produces means that you can’t run high work loads for extended periods of time because there is a thermal limit thus you’re better off just buying a laptop with an i7 instead.

The reason why I raise this issue is because of the amount of hype around the Apple Silicon SoC. The other point that I have to make is what Scott McNealy (former CEO of Sun Microsystems) said years ago – the world runs on GET – Good Enough Technology. Yes there have been more elegantly designed, theoretically superior, engineering marvels that have appeared but even with the promises the dominant processor today is still derived from the x86 in the form of the x86-64 even with it all is warts in much the same way that even with IBM’s own POWER processor the big Iron mainframes still depend on CISC based z/Architecture SoCs.

WWDC has finally been announced, the dates are 6 June to 10 June which will be great because I’ve got my holiday from 30 May to 15 June although I’m looking at doing some work around the house – cleaning up organising, getting the back and front tyre on my scooter sorted out since it appears that there is a puncher (at the moment I’m pumping it up each day since it s a slow leak). It’ll be interesting to see what Apple announces particularly in the area regarding Webkit given the gap between what is merged into the Safari Technology Preview vs Safari ‘mainstream release’ appears to be getting wider each day. Ideally what I’d like to see is Apple take a more aggressive approach to getting those improvements out there even if the release is on a 6 week cycle and the Webkit that Safari depends on is seperate so that after 6 weeks of end users using it, if the developers at Apple feel confident they can update the Webkit that comes bundled with macOS. What I am also hoping is that they embrace more of the open standards and royalty free codecs such as AV1 which Google has been pushing as the successor to the VP9 codec – at the moment VP9 is supported by Safari but AV1 isn’t.

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