Since no one else is writing about it I will, windows XP/Vista and OS X degrade as much as they progress, in the case of os x i tie it in with the hardware. The complaints mostly are about Mac OS since its what i use.
First the easy part windows, bloated patched up, behind in features every service pack makes it run slower. Who cares why, it does. As well alot of the bundled software is outdated or badly maintained, prime example IE6 and its poor rendering engine, they created a new OS (vista) before they started of that. Vista will adress some issues but system requirements skyrocket. I wont talk about vulnerabilities and viruses thats talked about enough.
OS X from my reading has for a long time been unreliable for VPN setups and Networking is at times an issue even mac to mac, admittedly tiger fixes some problems. But my main issue with os x stems from tigers new dashboard and the basic intel hardware (with integrated graphics). Panther runs on my imac333 with 256 ram and a 60gb 5400rpm hard disk, no speed demon but it works, next up imac FP17″ @ 700mhz (like the wii haha) runs tiger very nicely, 768 ram, 80gigs @ 7200rpm. My G4 12″ powerbook ran very nicely @ 1.5ghz 512 ram, it could run well with less i would wager, i tried it with 256 and it was ok actually (dont try encoding video like that though).
Now for the complaint, Intel OS X, bigger apparently more bloated and it seems poorer memory management at times, couple that with Integrated graphics and the need to run rosseta on occassion and the slow hard disk found on the mini and the macbook (compared to desktops) and you have a problem. A desktop will always have the advantage of the bigger harddrive so the bottom end imac for example is fine with the integrated graphics and the 512 ram. However the mini or macbook struggle with only 512 ram because of the memory reguirements of rosseta and the slower drive (which is a third full when you get it which further degrades performance) the graphics memory requirements and maybe the intel processors less agressive prefetching compared to the PPC Processors make the experience less bearable.
By all means its “good” but reflect on how previously in a sense you could get more of a basic experience with much less. Its a continuing trend but at too great a rate now. Now i have 1.25gigs of ram in my 12″ pb and my macbook and @ times i feel the Powerbook copes better, not in absolute terms offcoarse (encode some video without need of the gpu and you will know), which by all means is unexpected, especially with a better hard drive in the macbook, the problem is likely to do with software but that still degrades my user experience. Case in a nutshell software needs improvement, either bundle more ram or a basic gpu, even a 6200 with 16/32mb ram will do better, perhaps its the memory management that needs tweaking.
Oh yes and i would like to mention ddr2 has a higher latency than the normal ddr400, in fact ddr2 only outpaces ddr400 at speeds above 667, offcoarse the latency only aggravates everything when coupled with the slower harddisks of laptops, the gpu memory requirements and the increased load induced by a need for greater and more complicated memory management.
Ontop of that why are OS’s so obscenely huge without dedicated applications built in to help configure, compress or remove superfluous data. WHY OH WHY.
MAYBE THEY SHOULD REWRITE THE WHOLE BLASTED KERNAL AS A MONOLITHIC KERNAL OR REWRITE AND OPTIMIZE PARTS OF THE CURRENT ONE, OHH MONOLITHIC KERNAL WHERE ART THOU, IN LINUX THATS WHERE AHHHHHH.
What do you think