Post Cards from the Edge - AMD 780G, NVIDIA 790i, Gigabyte 680iby Gary Key on April 5, 2008 12:00 PM EST
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For a bright-eyed teenager in 1976 that had high hopes of becoming a journalist one day, the satirical film Network was a revelation suggesting maybe choosing another profession would be a wise move. (Ed: Look at where that got you.) After years of intense investigative coverage of Watergate and the resulting rise in credibility of the journalistic profession, it seemed the right - maybe even honorable - field of study during the college years... until that fateful New Year’s Day in 1976.
In 1976, the country was celebrating its bicentennial, trying to put Watergate and the Vietnam War out of our minds, and looking forward to an election that would chart a new direction in American politics. (These subjects sound familiar 32 years later.) Top films of that year really did represent what we were going through, and to some degree what we would become in the near future.
Rocky found us in love with the underdog who never gave up. All the President’s Men gave us a short synopsis of the Watergate scandal from the perspective of the journalistic team (Bernstein/Woodward) that broke the story and proved that journalists were sexy, provided you resembled a young Robert Redford. The Bad News Bears allowed us to take a humorous look at sports obsessed parents realizing that winning at any cost had taken the joy out of playing the game for many kids (kids who would become today’s Soccer Moms and Dads).
I enjoyed many other movies that year with my friends, which more or less fit in with our very sarcastic yet humorous personalities. Some were dark like Taxi Driver, Marathon Man, The Omen, Obsession, and Carrie, while others were on the lighter side such as Silent Movie, The Pink Panther Strikes Again, Silver Streak, and Mother, Jugs & Speed. Of course, we also had the breakout science fiction films, Logan’s Run and Futureworld. (Told you we were sarcastic.) All told, it was a decent year for film, and some thirty years later we still have Rocky, Pink Panther, and King Kong remakes.
However, there was one film that year that left a lasting impression on us; that film was the aforementioned and critically acclaimed Network. What All the President’s Men did to glorify the journalistic profession; Network succeeded in displaying the dark and seedy side of media. In retrospect, it also provided a fairly accurate glimpse of where TV/Print media was headed along with society. Sensationalism - some would say yellow journalism - sells and is what a large cross-section of society enjoys, whether they openly admit it or not.
In Network, Peter Finch played the aging news anchor, Howard Beale, who at one point in the film makes an impassioned speech that resulted in an extremely popular catch phrase of the time. He persuaded his watching audience to step outside and shout, “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!” This phrase struck a chord with mainstream America during that year and with us now.
It has been a couple of rough weeks for the motherboard team. Our best laid plans have been thwarted for a variety of reasons, most of which have us shouting the above phrase, and we are sure some of you feel the same way. Since the news and review sections are fairly quiet over the weekend, we thought it would be a good time to discuss those items that put a burr under our saddle - to address issues that our readership is having with the technology and companies that we cover on a periodic basis. Believe it or not, we rarely get to rant (and for very good reasons as you will see), but sometimes it's necessary to say what one thinks. So here is Rant Session #1 for your weekend enjoyment.