Originally posted by jimmyjames123
The idea is that there are no concrete "rules as to how the benchmark is run". There is no concrete definition of what makes up a driver "optimization". NVIDIA does not even have authorized access to the 3dmark03 developer tools that some other websites are using. Futuremark themselves is very inconsistent. They don't allow non-WHQL drivers, but they allow overclocked graphics cards and cpu's. Don't you think that "skews" results in a way that driver "optimizations" wouldn't? That introduces yet another variable, and the graphics cards (and cpu's) that overclock better will have a natural advantage.
The idea is
concrete which is something that you're simply not absorbing. It's not how you render all the information it is that you do render all the information and that you do it in a consistent matter which isn't specific to that benchmark. This is what I would assume Futuremark had hoped would be the situation with 3DMark03 and is the very basis of maintaining a very even field in terms of benchmarking.
It's also important to note this represents no effort on the part of Nvidia to increase driver performance. Performance is gained by reducing the amount of information rendered, which is extremely pointless since that makes comparisons between competing platforms impossible. That is why people refer to this as "cheating" and not "optimizing" as it changes the benchmark not the drivers.
To suggest that such a move is ok
is utterly ridiculous and I'm not sure why you keep entertaining that thought.