Linked by Nicholas Blachford on Wed 9th Jul 2003 16:43 UTC
Talk, Rumors, X Versus Y This article started life when I was asked to write a comparison of x86 and PowerPC CPUs for work. We produce PowerPC based systems and are often asked why we use PowerPC CPUs instead of x86 so a comparison is rather useful. While I have had an interest in CPUs for quite some time but I have never explored this issue in any detail so writing the document proved an interesting exercise. I thought my conclusions would be of interest to OSNews readers so I've done more research and written this new, rather more detailed article. This article is concerned with the technical differences between the families not the market differences.
Permalink for comment
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
8086 vs. 8080...
by WattsM on Wed 9th Jul 2003 21:17 UTC

...this is utterly a pointless argument, since it's coming down to different interpretations of what Intel's 1979 press release meant.

The two processors weren't opcode-compatible, but they were explicitly designed to have one-to-one translations from 8080 to 8086 opcodes so machine code could actually be translated simply, not reassembled. This is how the infamous QDOS, MS-DOS's ancestor, was created, and is part of why Digital Research eventually sued Microsoft: California Computer Systems (if I'm remembering the name right) ran CP/M's 8080 code through just such a translator, and then wrote a native BDOS for their development system. (The original releases of MS-DOS 1.0 actually had a Digital Research copyright string embedded in them because of this.)

So goo is technically right, but he's also being knowingly pendantic, since Blachford's point--that the 8086 was considered a descendant of the 8080 by Intel itself--is also correct.