.. irst-time experiences. He addresses the opposing viewpoints. Although Spector favors the Celeron, he provides the pros and cons of buying either chip. He warns the reader like everything before the PII-350, the Celeron still chugs along a 66-MHz system bus (58). In addition, the reader won’t be able to add [upgrade] future Pentium chips [on a Celeron system].
If [he or she doesn’t] like this limitation, buy a PII-350 or better .. (59). If the reader is planning on buying a PII chip, Spector cautions him or her by saying, confirm with the vendor [the PII] has no potential BIOS problems (59). Spector’s reputation increases immensely when he explains that problems were encountered during the testing of the chips. He states, due to certain conflicts .. we were unable to complete ..
test[s] for the HP and Compaq machines (56). This helps assure the author’s interest in the reader and vice-versa. It also establishes Spector’s credibility and makes him an expert on the subject. To help facilitate the reader’s understanding of the author’s argument, Spector logically organizes his article. In doing so, he takes a step-by-step approach to the subject. This holds the reader’s attention and makes it easy for him or her to follow along without getting distracted.
He starts off by comparing and contrasting the two chips. Next, he moves on to analyze the PII-450. To deter the attention of the reader from the PII, Spector uses a catchy subtitle Big Bargain. Using a tantalizing introductory sentence, he focuses the reader’s attention on the Celeron: But maybe you don’t need an expensive computer at all.
With Intel’s new improved Celeron chip .. (56). The core of his argument rests in the following paragraphs where he advocates the Celeron. He concludes his article by promoting the best Celeron system deals. Yet, he also shows how the situation would be should the reader chose to buy a PII system. Spector leaves it for the reader to decide which chip he or she should buy.
Spector plays the role of an investigative expert. Like a reporter, his tone is informative and mainly neutral. Since he doesn’t appeal to the reader’s emotions, he doesn’t use any pathos to convince them. Without the use of pathos, Spector is able to distance himself from the topic and does a good job maintaining neutrality. He isn’t biased against a chip. Though he favors the Celeron chip, based on the factors of price and performance, he is unperturbed by the prospect of his reader buying a PII.
He is even courageous to say that, if you want every bit of performance currently available, a PII-450 .. may be worth the expense (59). But he reiterates that the [Celeron] systems strike a smart balance between low price and fast performance .. A good PC value is much more satisfying (59).
Spector’s neutrality gains him respect from the reader because it allows the reader to contemplate the evidence presented by Spector and come to his or her own conclusions. The language used by Spector in presenting his evidence makes the task of decision-making easier. The language used by the author is relatively simple. There is some computer terminology like secondary level cache, bus speed, and graphics port accelerator that the reader may not understand (56).
Moreover, there are many products like Microsoft DirectX or STB Velocity 128zx that may be unknown (56). Based on the context clues provided, Spector assumes that the reader will be able to understand their meanings. The sentences are short and precise. They allow Spector to move quickly from point to point without getting bogged down. Vocabulary is relatively simple with the toughest words being tempo and outstripped (56).
A high school student should have no problem in reading the article. Words like Celeron and PII are repeated several times to help the author differentiate between the two chips. Simple language enables Spector to write an effective article. An article in PC Week also addresses the same topic.
Christopher Yates, the author of Intel Celeron Cache in With New Power, argues that both the Celeron and the PII-450 produce excellent performance results. Like Spector, Yates tries to make effective use of organization, tone, his role as a writer and language in writing his article. However, some of these factors work against Yates preventing him from writing an effective article. Yates makes a similar argument to Spector’s, but fails to provide an in-depth analysis of the two chips or give advice as to which chip the reader should buy. However, Yates praises both of the chips immensely saying that the largest performance improvement comes from Intel’s revved-up Celeron ..
[and] Intel has also turned up the heat on its [PII], now available at 450 MHz (35). Unlike Spector, who uses various strategies to present evidence for his argument, Yates is not very creative. Like Spector, Yates uses logos as his primary means to convince the reader of his argument. However, Yates’s only form of evidence comes from the few statistics and a single chart that support his claim. The chart presents lab results of tests conducted on the chips. Additional information necessary to understand the visual aid is available.
As with Spector’s article, the use of statistics helps Yates gain some credibility from his reader. He says, the L2-equipped Celeron was .. 33 percent faster than the non L2-equipped Celeron (35) while the PII-450 performed as high as 20% over the [PII-400] (35). In addition to using percentages, Yates also uses computer prices like $1,349 for the 3000 GL [Celeron equipped] and $2,400 for the Deskpro EN [PII-450 equipped] to show that the Celeron is cheaper than a PII. Backing up his argument with the use of statistics helps Yates to gain some credibility for a moment.
As the article proceeds, Yates begins to lose his credibility. After a couple of paragraphs, he gets sidetracked. Yates dedicates two whole paragraphs differentiating between the two kinds of Celeron. He says, all non-cache versions of Celeron are ..
[while the] Celeron processor with 128KB L2 cache will all be .. (35). Although one might see this as background information necessary to get acquainted to the subject, many readers (like I) will get annoyed because it doesn’t pertain to Yates’s argument. It shows that Yates has little knowledge on the subject. Yates gets back on track but deviates again in his conclusion. This time Yates talks about the expansion (upgrade) capabilities of the computers that he mentions in his article.
He says, expansion in all three devices is more than adequate with at least two PCI slots and two ISA slots .. (41). His conclusion coupled with unwise organization leaves the reader without a clue of the author’s main point. Yates organizes his article into parts to help divide the contents of his subject.
Like Spector, he tries to use a step-by-step approach so that he can move efficiently. Although organization plays an effective role in helping focus the reader’s attention on a particular subtopic like distinguishing between the two kinds of Celeron, it doesn’t provide the overall coherence. Yates first introduces the Celeron and the PII. In the next section, he contrasts the two types of Celerons, which is irrelevant and in doing so, initiates the first point of alienation. He then proceeds to analyze three models of computers equipped with the Celeron and the PII chips. In the end, he talks about the expansion capabilities of the computers.
Yates, unlike Spector, ends up talking about too many things at the same time without being able to interconnect them. But although his article has many faults, Yates is successful in maintaining a neutral tone. Yates’s article is informative. The role played by Yates is that of a news reporter. His article begins with a typical, dull, straightforward statement one would find in a newspaper: Two new processors form Intel Corp. boost performance on PCs from IBM and Compaq Computer Corp.
to new heights (35). The article provides a lot of sometimes-irrelevant information and doesn’t portray any feelings. Thus, Yates, like Spector, doesn’t use pathos in his article. He doesn’t develop a close relationship with the reader because he doesn’t provide any advice on the chips.
A feeling of separation occurs in the reader’s mind because he or she feels that Yates is just throwing out facts without showing any concern for his audience. This has a dramatic impact because the reader is always alienated from the subject and never gains full interest. This is also due to the complex language Yates uses. Yates assumes that the reader is familiar with basic computer terminology like L2-equipped, expansion, and non-cache chip (40). Unlike Spector, he takes time to define some of these words.
Unfortunately, the strategy works against him because Yates wastes too much time on explaining, which distracts the reader. Like Spector, Yates also uses short sentences to keep the article flowing at a fast pace. However, the vocabulary level is much more complex. Many words like miniscule, disparity, and nomenclature which may not be part of the reader’s vocabulary are present (35). Yates provides plenty of context clues for experienced readers to decipher the meaning of the word. For example, by looking at the miniscule savings just aren’t worth the performance hit, the reader should be able to figure out the meaning of miniscule.
Yates also uses many abbreviations like Corp., PCI, and ISA to save paper space. He assumes that the reader is familiar with them. Finally, he repeats the words Celeron and PII throughout the article to help differentiate between the chip that is being discussed. Overall, Yates doesn’t do a good job in presenting his argument. Between the two articles, Lincoln Spector’s Double Feature was more effective. The use of various sources of evidence, a neutral tone, logical organization, and simple language helps the reader easily understand Spector’s topic.
Although Yates’s article shares some of these characteristics, Spector does a better job than Yates in analyzing and giving advice on the two chips. After reading the articles, I am convinced of Spector’s credibility. Upon seeing the way Yates writes, I think that he has little knowledgeable on the subject. Thus, inexperienced computer buyers interested in gaining insight on the Celeron and the PII should read Double Feature.
Reading this article will help prepare them better to face the challenge of buying the right computer. Poetry.