Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 17th Nov 2013 13:15 UTC
Amiga & AROS

A-EON Technology, the company behind the AmigaONE X1000, has not exactly been sitting still. They're hard at work developing the successor to the Nemo motherboard (which powers the X1000): it's called Cyrus, and is built around Freescale QorIQ processors, ranging from 32bit 1.5 Ghz (the P3) to 64bit 2.4 Ghz (the P5). Users have been invited to join the beta test programme for this new board, which will eventually power the successor to the X1000. On top of that, A-EON will invest $1.2 million in their partnership with Varisys, the company that builds the Amiga hardware.

Hyperion, the company that develops AmigaOS, hasn't been twiddling their thumbs either. The biggest hurdle the AmigaOS 4 developers are facing right now is SMP, but work on this issue is progressing.

One of the major hurdles right now, as AmigaOS Development Team Lead Steven Solie implied, is getting the AmigaOS Exec-kernel to support multiple CPU cores. As part of the process, a new so called "scheduler" is being implemented. The new scheduler is apparently already running in the current, internal builds of AmigaOS although Steven suggested there will be room for improvement and optimizations prior to an official release. AmigaOS 4.2 will also introduce the Gallium3D WinSys API for hardware accelerated 3D graphics.

As always with these niche products built by and for enthusiasts, it's hard to tell where it will lead to. However, fact remains that the X1000 was apparently a big enough of a success for A-EON to invest into the next generation, and for Hyperion to continue work on getting AmigaOS to support SMP - something that only benefits A-EON's machines.

While everyone else is whining about iOS and Android, the Amiga people are still doing their thing. You have to respect that.

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It's interesting to see somebody producing PowerPC motherboards for desktop PC's, but there's no doubt in my mind that they're going to be expensive when they're finally released (case in point: AmigaOne X1000.) The only consumer-oriented PPC "computer" available right now is the Wii U; perhaps A-Eon could have pursued some kind of co-production agreement with Nintendo and IBM to produce a PPC computer based around the Espresso chip?

As far as the Amiga platform goes, it was great for 1985-1990 but it lives on in the form of every platform it influenced (Windows, OS X and Linux all owe a lot to Amiga.) Perhaps someday the owners of the original Amiga patents (I believe Acer got them when they bought Gateway) could go trolling and make a fortune.

The best way to honor the pioneering Amiga computer is not by coming up with new PPC platforms (which are still interesting in their own right) but to emulate the old software (particularly the timeless games)on modern OS'es. I'd rather stick an Amiga skin and an emulator on top of a Linux distro running on cheap x86 hardware than shell out around $4000 for a rare PPC system running an OS with few native apps.

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