When you're buying a used car, you don't just check to see how old the car is and then hand over the Blue Book value. High on the list of things to check is the mileage. If a car's only a couple years old, but has been driven across the country and back dozens of times, you might not expect it to last that much longer.
Unfortunately, when you're in the market for a new computer, there's no way to tell how hard the machine has been driven. It could have been owned by some grandmother who only drove it to AOL.com once a week. Or it could have been an over-clocked gaming PC that only powered down for reboots.
This uncertainty contributes to slow used PC sales. If there's no way to tell whether a hard drive is gonna crash in the next few months, there's no reason to invest in used equipment. The result is a lot of good computers never finding second homes...aside from in the landfill.
But researchers at the University of Limerick in Ireland are hoping to change that. By logging data that is already being taken by computers on internal temperatures and hard drive faults, they're hoping to create a kind of score. This score would be a fairly accurate representation of the possibility of failure for the machine.
It seems like an excellent solution to me...though all of my machines would likely have unfortunately high "mileages." But the question remains...will there ever be a viable after market for computers? Would having a better idea of the state of a used machine increase your chances of buying used? I'd love to hear people's opinions in the comments.
Via New Scientist
written by DLDzioba, March 24, 2008
written by Carl Foner, March 24, 2008
written by disdaniel, March 24, 2008
written by Joshua Brotman, March 25, 2008
written by kym, March 26, 2008
written by weee, March 26, 2008
written by Mike, April 15, 2008
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