The Exigent Duality
Theories and New PC - 09:04 CDT, 12/24/22 (Sniper)
This article proposes that what drove the past forty years-- my lifespan, interestingly-- was this:

  • Central banks created massive amounts of money out of thin air.
  • Enterprises maximized profits by using cheap labor in the new "global market".
  • As debt grew, central banks kept the servicing manageable by repeatedly dropping interest rates.

All three of these trends are now reversing:

  • The mind boggling inflation of the money supply has finally caused prices to skyrocket.
  • Geopolitical risk is forcing companies to "homeshore" labor into more expensive labor markets.
  • Central banks are having to raise interest rates to combat price inflation.

His conclusion is that governments will subsume what has been the role of central banks: they will guide a re-industrialization of Western economies. Meanwhile, Charles Hugh Smith explains why his conclusions are wrong. The whole article is well worth a read.

In totally unrelated news, my wife convinced me to just bite the bullet and build a new PC now: our cash flow situation is good, and if my theory about game budgets being what's holding back game graphics-- not "cross-gen"-- then this will be the last PC I ever build, since games will never fully stress what it's capable of. Here are what the specs will be; everything is ordered other than the video card, which launches in January:

Component TypeComponent Name
CPUAMD Ryzen 7700X
CPU CoolerDeepCool AK620
GPUNvidia RTX 4070 Ti
MotherboardGigabyte B650 Aorus Elite AX AM5
RAM2x 16 gig. G.SKILL Trident DDR5 6000 (F5-6000J3636F16GX2-TZ5RK)
StorageSamsung 980 Pro 1 TB
Power SupplyCorsair RM850x
CaseCorsair 4000D Airflow White

Here is how this new PC stacks up to the current-gen consoles; overall it's multiples faster than either of them, and that's no exaggeration. Then you factor in DLSS 3 and "frame generation", and the consoles are not even from the same planet-- "Witcher 3" with partial ray tracing on the consoles at ~25 fps in town, versus this PC with full ray tracing at ~100 fps in the same town with "frame generation" enabled:

SpecSniper's PCPlayStation 5Xbox Series X
CPU8-Core AMD Zen 48-Core AMD Zen 28-Core AMD Zen 2
CPU Max Clock5400 MHz3500 MHz3800 MHz
GPUNvidia RTX 4070 Ti (~40 Teraflops)AMD RDNA 2 (~10.3 Teraflops)AMD RDNA 2 (~12 Teraflops)
GPU Chip Details7680 "CUDA" Cores @ 2310 MHz36 "Compute Units" @ 2230 MHz52 "Compute Units" @ 1825 MHz
Memory12 GB @ 50,400 MB/s, 32 GB @ 48,000 MB/s16 GB @ 44,800 MB/s10 GB @ 56,000 GB/s, 6 GB @ 33,600 MB/s
Storage1 TB @ 6554 MB/s825 GB @ 5500 MB/s raw1 TB @ 2400 MB/s raw

I could wait a bit for the Zen 4 "X3D" chips to launch-- but the 7700X is so much faster than the consoles already, I think anything faster will be overkill. I could always upgrade later as well; inevitably one or both of my kids will wind up on AM5, so I'd have a hand-me-down CPU all ready. Meanwhile, I went AMD over Intel because if my game budget-limited theory is wrong, I will have an upgrade path for years to come on AM5: I'm hedged for either outcome.