Friday, March 13, 2009

Where's the other Core?

So, I get a call from this guy who's a friend of mine and the conversation goes a bit like this :
Him : Hi there..blah blah... So I went to this place to get a new computer, I had planned to get an Intel CPU, but the guy convinced me to get an AMD, but now I find out that it's a single core, and I wanted a dual core.
Me : How did you figure out if its a single core and not a dual core.
Him : I checked online.
Me : You checked the manufacturer's website ?
Him : Nope, I checked it out on eBay, and it says that it's a single core. Do really need to check the manufacturer's website? And besides, I checked and I confirmed that it's actually a single core.
Me : And how exactly did you do that?
Him : There's just one CPU on the motherboard not two.
Me : -- ** WTF **--

And so I go on to explain that dual core does not mean two physical CPU's and stuff. To add to the gravity of the situation, the guy is actually a computer engineer!!

And that situation really got me thinking? Does any engineer really know absolutely nothing about his field of expertise until he's been trained by the company? And the answer to that is a resounding yes. The reason may be that engineering is such a vast field that you really can't teach anyone any specifics. Take for example the field of electronics. I, myself, am pursuing a course in Electronics an Telecommunication Engineering and I definitely don't know much about any particulars in electronics - the scope is just way too large. Is it really possible for any single person to know every single thing about electronics? And then come the line separating the fields - like for example, Digital Signal Processing - Does it fall into electronic engineering or computer engineering, and why so? The lines are simply too blurred to figure it out.

So it all boils down to this. This computer engineer doesn't understand the concept of CPU cores. Me, an electronics student am much more into computers and software than I'm into electronics. And I have a few friends who have pursued Automobile engineering and atleast one of them can vouch that he knew more cars going into the course than when coming out.

I would really like to go on and on about this topic, but this post has gotten too long. I'll definitely pick this topic up later. Till then,