[FoRK] The Future of Desktops

Ken Meltsner meltsner at alum.mit.edu
Sun Mar 2 08:59:34 PST 2014

On Sun, Mar 2, 2014 at 10:39 AM, Gregory Alan Bolcer <greg at bolcer.org>wrote:

> Agreed though....  Nividia has two break through technologies that reduced
> that difference.  That technique is fast-eliminating the types of apps that
> don't work well for client render.
> The first is the grid, the second is g-sync.  The first is a coordinative
> system with two GPUs at each end that speak a special condensed protocol
> that can sync between a remote server and some bandwidth varied internet
> connected client PC.  The second is the GPU in your PC talking across an
> HDMI cable or wifi to a GPU in either a gaming client or the monitor using
> the same trick.
> On a completely different subject, I was the founder of a company that
> made a remote application streaming service.  You could run a 400 Meg
> Microsoft Office, or 1.2Gig Adobe Creative Suite and start using it in
> under 60 seconds on a client as we tricked it into thinking it was
> completely installed on a lan or wifi connection.  The bits would also get
> cached (and remote provisioned if you wanted). The biggest sales issue we
> had was educating people that the apps were actually running native on the
> system and were identical to having them locally installed at a time when
> everyone else was educating the market about remote display access.
> Greg

Yes, the remote display guys are why I'm embarrassed to think well of
Citrix and HDX -- if you're going to do remote KVM, it's pretty good and
breaks down the traffic by type so that it can be managed for QoS, but
you're still streaming lots of stuff that you probably shouldn't with a
sane remoting approach.

I remember the app streaming company. Did it lost out to remote displays
because it couldn't be guaranteed to work with any possible homegrown
application, often very "legacy" (old and undermaintained)?  The
over-generalization of my experience is that there's always something that
won't run with the intelligent/superior solution because it's too old or
too stupidly written, and no one wants (or can) fix it.  And if you get
through that barrier, the crappier/brain-dead solution will be found to be
cheaper and "good enough" [regardless of whether it's actually

Ken Meltsner

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