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Best and Worst of 2000
By: Jim Miller
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    The Year 2000 is finally behind us and OCA would like to take this time to provide our take on some things that rocked, and a few items that, well, didn't rock. You may agree and you may not, but we call 'em like we see 'em. Lets get it on.

    Best and Worst of 2000

    The Year 2000 is finally behind us and OCA would like to take this time to provide our take on some things that rocked, and a few items that, well, didn't rock.  You may agree and you may not, but we call 'em like we see 'em.  Lets get it on.

    Biggest Disappointment: 3dfx. If 3dfx had gotten their act together, releasing the Voodoo5 5500 much sooner and at a more competitive price, they could have really dominated the market. The card was too little and too late, and with Geforce2 GTS cards outperforming the Voodoo5 for a lot less money, it was a no-brainer. Also, we believe if 3dfx had released the 5500 with DDR memory instead of slower SDRAM, it could have hung with, if not outperformed the Geforce2 GTS. Giving less memory bottlenecks and a higher clock speed. 3dfx has since been gobbled up by nVidia Corp, and we all hope they’ll take the best of what 3dfx had to offer and incorporate it into their own drivers and hardware.  

    PC product of the Year: nVidia’s Geforce2 MX. This card is just the best thing going for anyone wanting to upgrade his or her system right now. For around a 100$ you can install one of these baby’s in your system and run any game, any application on the market, and do it well. No, it may not pump out 200fps on QuakeIII at high quality 1600x1200 res, but it will damn sure look good and make it MORE than playable at 1280x960 or less. Props out to nVidia for providing a great solution for the budget minded PC builder/Gamer.  

    Vaporware of the Year: Bitboys Extreme Bandwidth Architecture. Ok, these guys have the baddest hardware on the block, or so they say. We've been hearing this for awhile now and what bitboys is claiming is that they are creating hardware that will NOT be bandwidth limited, therefore providing the fastest 3D graphics engine ever. Ummm, I'll believe it when I see it guys.

    Hottest Processor of the Year: AMD’s Socket A T-Bird. AMD hit the scene with the Athlon and lagged behind the P3 a bit with its 1/2 speed on board cache.  With the introduction of the T-Bird which had cache that ran at full speed it took Intel by storm.  It not only beat Intel P3's in the majority of benchmarks, but crushed the P4's as well, and it left them behind in price.  When in today's market you can purchase a 1ghz T-Bird for under $170 compared to over $400 for a comparable part Intel, how could we pick anything else? 

    Most Anticipated Hardware that never saw production: 3dfx’s Voodoo5 6000. Damn, what a beautiful piece of hardware that would have been at the top of every Hardcore PC aficionado's Christmas list. Yes, at a VERY steep price of $600 retail, but how many peeps can say they have a video card with 4processors and it’s own power supply, complete with a whopping 128meg of memory? [H]OCP has the last great pix of this extinct species. 

    Things that make you go Hmmmm: Microsoft's Xbox. We are all curious to see exactly how this set top box from MS will fair against the likes of Sony’s Playstation2 and Sega’s Dreamcast and the yet to be released Nintendo Dolphin. From a technological standpoint, the Xbox will be worlds ahead of the PS2 and Dreamcast. But does MS have the technical know-how and marketing savvy to outsell veterans of the console gaming market? Seems like they are going to give this one hell of a shot. Meanwhile I am going to sit back and quietly watch the carnage fly.

    Game of the year: ID Software's QuakeIII. Yes, we know, this may be highly disputed, but check our site name. OCAddiction! Q3 is the most used and valued gaming benchmark for all systems, low-end and high-end alike. Also, the game arguably has the best graphics engine of anything to date, incorporating all the bells and whistles of the best video cards out there,  and is fun as hell to play. Show me an overclocked system without Q3 installed and I'll kiss your ass. Well, no I won't, but you get the drift.

    Most Controversial Software App of the Year: Napster. Oh man. We surely thought our prayers had been answered when we first downloaded and fired up Napster. If you have high-speed internet, a decent sized hard drive and a CD burner, it gets no better my friends. Napster has had it's ups and downs this year and may soon be gone, due to pressure from the big record labels, so make that list and check it twice, then get your songs while you can folks. The good times will not last forever.


    Peripheral of the Year: Optical Mice. We were quite skeptical of these mice at first. But after just a few minutes of use, I could never go back to an analog mouse again. These things are so smooth and so precise, you just have to use one to get the full experience. Not to mention that you'll never have to pop open the bottom of your mouse only to find lint, dust and other unmentionables in there that need to be thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis. Hats off to Microsoft for bringing this technology to the market first.


    Fastest Emerging Technology: Broadband Internet Services DSL and Cable High SPeeD Internet access has been coming on strong for awhile now, but 2000 was the year it really hit it big. With prices falling around $40 a month for near or above T-1access speeds, we just don't see how you can go wrong. Bringing feature rich audio and video straight to your desktop, such as and Othervision, as well as download speeds to die for, OCA had no problems voting broadband in as #1 for this category. Dial-Up is slowly going obsolete, and I hope to never hear the connection signal of a 56K modem again!


    Beer of the Year Award: Bud Light in the Bottle. We know some folks are going to be offended by this choice, but you're just gonna have to deal with it! Yes, there are loads of fine brews currently available, but without a doubt, the best "bang for your buck" beer has to be Bud Light. It's certainly the most consumed beverage here in the OCA Labs! Not to mention a local joint named Harrison's Bar and Grill where we blow all that $$$ we should be spending on hardware! It's fine quality barley and hops, combined with the finest of ingredients, holds true, there can be no other. Oh, and Chic's will think your cool if you drink it! 


    We hope you enjoyed our take on the Years Best and Worst.  We were gonna have a "Site of the Year" category but figured you'd think we were biased if we picked OCA!  We appreciate all you peeps stopping by to take a look, and as usual, send any flames, props or suggestions HERE.
    DISCLAIMER: The content provided in this article is not warranted or guaranteed by Developer Shed, Inc. The content provided is intended for entertainment and/or educational purposes in order to introduce to the reader key ideas, concepts, and/or product reviews. As such it is incumbent upon the reader to employ real-world tactics for security and implementation of best practices. We are not liable for any negative consequences that may result from implementing any information covered in our articles or tutorials. If this is a hardware review, it is not recommended to open and/or modify your hardware.

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