Computer Makers Sued Over Hard-Drive Capacity Claims

RobertR

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it should not be legal to advertise a 40GB computer hard drive when it does not have 40 computer GB of storage.
YOU say it doesn't have 40 gigabytes, but MOST people DO say and think it has 40 gigabytes (they see 40,000,000,000 bytes in the drive properties), so as far as THEY are concerned, there is no false advertising.

So drop the lawsuit, add this to your list of gripes about what people think, and get on with your life.
 

MarkHastings

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So drop the lawsuit, add this to your list of gripes about what people think, and get on with your life
If you really don't care, stay in the shallow end of the pool and let the people (who care about the exact science that computers represent) deal with this. There is no such thing as "Rounding Off" in the computer world and some of us will not allow anyone to change that method of thinking.

Saying 1GB = 1,000,000,000 is like guessing and a computer NEVER guesses, so why should we? It just doesn't COMPUTE!
 

RobertR

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a computer NEVER guesses, so why should we?
But we guess all the time. How far is it to your friend's house? About 6 miles? Or 6.0764325566 miles? I want a cup of coffee, waiter, and it had BETTER not be 7.9999965 fl. ounces, dammit!
 

Mike Poindexter

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But what people think IS the whole point. The HD makers say "one gig", people THINK "one gig", and people GET "one gig. So no one is harmed.
Sorry, that is incorrect.

My hard drive said 250GB. I bought it, but I only got 232.8GB. I was harmed by not getting the last 17.2 GB per drive. I purchased 16 drives, so my net loss is 275.2GB. That is a lot of storage.

I did not get 250 GB. I got 232.8GB. I can go into the drive properties and see that it is 232.8GB! So I have been harmed! Please don't say "No harm, no foul" when I am clearly stating that I and others have been harmed.

At $250 per 250GB drive and I have lost 275.2GB, I have been shortchanged $275.20 on my latest purchase of hard drives.
 

RobertR

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I did not get 250 GB. I got 232.8GB.
According to YOUR definition. Common usage says you DID get 250 GB. Again, you've given no reason why your definition should be legally enforced over that of others, ESPECIALLY since you're obviously able to do the math and plan your purchases accordingly. I would do the same if I were buying English tons instead of metric tons.
 

John_Berger

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YOU say it doesn't have 40 gigabytes, but MOST people DO say and think it has 40 gigabytes (they see 40,000,000,000 bytes in the drive properties), so as far as THEY are concerned, there is no false advertising.
When the computer comes back and says that someone is only getting 37.25 GB, there most certainly is false advertising since the hard drive manufacturers have artificilly inflated their GB capacity to a value that is different than what the user will actually be getting when they put the hard drive in. Computers calculate everything in base-2, not base-10; therefore, for hard drive manufacturers to advertise based on a mathematical system that computers DO NOT USE is fraudulent.

Once again, my gas station analogy is a perfect situation. I'll open a gas station using what I think is a more appropriate defnition for the term "gallon" so as to inflate the illusion of how much volume is actually being purchased. I'll also enforce a polcy that one of my dollars is 1.5 of your dollars. (Hey, If the hard drive manufcturers can change the definition of a gigabyte, I can change the definitio of a dollar from 100 pennies to 150 pennies.) I'll be shut down in a heartbeat for deceptive advertising. The hard drive manufacturers are being just as deceptive. The fact that you won't acknowledge that (beyond what you think about the lawsuit itself) is genuinely mind-boggling.

And by the way, if a group of us publish a dictionary that states very clearly that a gigabyte is equivalent to 4,265,468,547 bytes, I expect you to come to our defense because the amount is - after all - defined specifically in a dictionary. Since your attitude is that "it's in a dictionary, so it's true", I would expect you to adhere to our definition of a gigabyte as 4,265,468,547 bytes. And what is the possibility of that, I wonder?
 

MarkHastings

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According to YOUR definition
But his definition is the same definition that computers have been using since the dawn of computers.

Again, these hard drives aren't being used as door stops where the GB's don't matter, they are being used in computers where 1 MB = 1024 KB and thus they should be labeled according to that logic. Any other convention of tabulating hard drive space goes against how a computer calculates bit and bytes, so why should we settle for a calculation that doesn't calculate bytes into the same form that a computer does???????? (EDIT: I see John made this same statement in his last post)
 

RobertR

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if a group of us publish a dictionary that states very clearly that a gigabyte is equivalent to 4,265,468,547 bytes, I expect you to come to our defense
If you did that, I would simply say that you're competing with the prevailing view, which is what the dictionary reflects. Sorry John, simply saying it's so doesn't change the general view. If you want to start an eduucational campaign to resolve the Great Gigabyte Disagreement, feel free to do so. But I'd rather you didn't make it a matter of law.
 

RobertR

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What if they put a 1,000,000,000 byte hard drive in a box and then put a false line that 1,000,000,000 bytes = 30 GB's
Such a claim wouldn't be supported by ANY mathematical definition in use today, so it's not the same thing. But the general use of the prefix ""giga" to mean one billion IS supported. As I pointed out, NO one disputes that a gigawatt is 1e9 watts. You and John simply want to dictate the use of binary math instead of decimal math. The rest of the world doesn't have to.
 

Mike Poindexter

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RobertR:

The prevailing view is 2^30 bytes. The first definition of a GB in the dictionary is 2^30 bytes.

This is not about trying to get the law to agree with me. This is about an industry that has chosen to break with the standards of naming in the computer industry specifically for the sole purpose of getting a bigger number for marketing.

Don't you find it odd that 1 GB of RAM is more memory than 1GB of hard disk space? Should they not be the same? Aftr all, a GB is a measure of storage, yet we have one machine using two measuring systems. That is not the way we expect things.

You will not admit that common useage sees a GB = 1024 MB.

The problem we now have, though, is that this cannot be corrected without getting the courts or the legislature involved.

If I made the same drive as Western Digital, but sold mine as a 37.2GB drive when they sold theirs as a 40GB drive, I would not be able to sell as many as I would had we both been advertising a 37.2GB drive. The only way to stay in business is to do what the competition does, so you cannot make it voluntary, as you only get a reward if you do not comply. This must me legislated or have a court ruling to get it mandated.

Plain and simple: Voluntary won't cut it!
 

RobertR

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The only way to stay in business is to do what the competition does
So let's see: The industry settles on the gigabyte = 1e9 standard because of market forces, consumers in general accept and expect it, they don't feel defrauded, and guys like you and John know tne difference. I see NO role for government here.
 

Mike Poindexter

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As has been pointed out (and not disputed), this is every bit as legitimate a definition of gigabyte as yours. You have NOT shown that it is defined your way, only contended that others should agree with you.
RobertR: I have indeed disputed this and shown it. I will put it more plainly here. The link is below.
http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=gigabyte

The definition is as follows:

1. A unit of computer memory or data storage capacity equal to 1,024 megabytes (2^30 bytes).
2. One billion bytes.

You are looking at definition #2, but that is not the correct useage of the word. As many words have multiple meanings, you must look at the context. If we were talking about how many bytes are in a Gigabyte of telecom traffic, then it would be a billion bytes.

When talking about computer or data storage capacity, you must use definition #1. As it has been declared as the definition for computer memory and data storage, the correct term is 2^30 bytes.

You CANNOT use a billion bytes for the term GB to describe computer memory or data storage, as the definition when used for computers has been defined as 2^30 bytes. If you are talking about something else not related to computer memory or data storage, then you go to definition #2.

I contend that a computer hard drive certainly falls into the category of computer memory or data storage. Therefore, 1 GB = 2^30 bytes.

Is that plain and simple enough for you to follow what I am saying, or must you come back and tell me that I haven't proven my point about what a GB is when dealing with hard drives?
 
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Guys,

Don't bother arguing with RobertR. He's convinced that he and only he is right and wont budge.

When he is proven wrong, he will go back and edit his post to remove whatever he said that was wrong, even 2 years after the fact.

It's a no-win situation guys, let it go.
 

Neal_C

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Just for a second, lets go back and read the article that started this thread.

It is not the hard drive manufacturers that are being sued, it is the personal computer manufacturers.

The lawsuit, which seeks class action status, was filed earlier this week in Los Angeles Superior Court against Apple Computer, Dell, Gateway, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Sharp, Sony and Toshiba.
Hard drives, when sold seperately in the store, have a footnote stating how they determine what a GB is. These idiots filing the lawsuit figured out they couldn't sue the hard drive manufacturers, so they looked at computer manufacturers and said "hmm, I don't see a footnote, lets just sue them, whether they are really the ones at fault or not".
 

Patrick Sun

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Guys, tomorrow will be the start of a new year, let's just say that both sides agree to disagree and move on to something more constructive that won't waste any more bandwidth on this topic, nor will it introduce personal attacks to the "discussion", which would make me have to the big bad computer policeman.
 

Mike Poindexter

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You are just like the hard drive suppliers: deliberately choosing the incorrect definition for the context of the word. The only thing that is really sick is that while they have incentive to do it - to make a buck, you are doing it just to be argumentative.

When definition #1 fits exactly and is written in the context you are using, then you use that. If definition #1 does not apply, then you proceed to definition #2.

The one billion bytes definition is a legitimate useage when NOT dealing with computer memory or data storage, as that is explicitly spelled out in an earlier definition, which would take priority.

I wouldn't call the computer police. I think instead you should brush up on your English skills.

Under GB, there is also this definition:
gigabytes or gigabits - see MB. Giga stands for
10^9 - a US billion, or in computing for 2^30.

That means that if you are talking about computing, you are supposed to use 2^30. You could try to use the other definition, but you would be incorrect to do so. GB also means Great Britain. I certainly don't expect 250 Great Britains to be in the box, even though that could be construed by you to be a proper definition of GB.

When dealing in computers, giga means 2^30.

Do you need more proof? Or are you still just looking to argue the point?
 

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