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.
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Ugh
by Athemeus on Thu 10th Jul 2003 16:47 UTC

The article starts off declaring PPC's larger number of registers and then fails to say *why*. I find this disturbingly biased. RISC architectures are supposed to simplify code, and one of the ways it does this is by using register to register operations. With a CISC architecture, you can add two numbers together and put them in memory in one instruction. For a RISC architecture, you add two numbers, put them in a register, then do a second instruction to move the register contents to memory. This important fact was wholly omitted. Nor is it mentioned that the reason micro-ops are used is for pipelining purposes! Pipelining is an important feature of RISC. Of course, it isn't mentioned that one of the reasons RISC and pipelining are associated is because the instructions need to all be of the same length, and how micro-ops gets around the fact that long CISC instructions impede pipelining. What's even more is that RISC is there to help people write compilers, but it isn't mentioned that because Intel is so large, they can throw plenty of money at the compilers. Microsoft also has no shortage of people to put to work on it. And then SMT is mentioned, but not explained in basic terms how it works.

This article is nothing more than biased junk. And I even like the new G5s. They are good processors, speedy, I'm sure.