Linked by Eugenia Loli on Tue 15th Jul 2003 18:26 UTC
OpenStep, GNUstep Every so often I have this urge (maybe more of an itch) to spend hours and hours on the web trying to find information about old, obsolete computers of the past. I am intrigued by the XEROX Alto and Star ('70s-'82), the Apple Lisa ('83) and, of course, CRAYs ('75-ish). These were revolutionary machines indeed, they wrote golden pages in the history of computing. In the end of the 1980s, a new innovative product was ready to ship, created by a bunch of people coming from Apple: The NeXT platform.
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i860
by nicholas Blachford on Wed 16th Jul 2003 15:40 UTC

"The NeXT cube also includes a digital signal processor that was described as a "super computer on a chip." "

That wasn't the moto 56K DSP on NeXT's mobos, but rather the i860 on the NeXTDimension board. Intel marketroids had that slogan for the 80860 "a cray on a chip" or "a supercomputer on a chip" (hint about who was buffling, cray still sells supers... intel stopped shipping 860s long ago)


The reason behind that slogan is IIRC the Cray 1 could do 66 MegaFlops and the i860 was the first (or one of the first) CPU to achieve this performance level, It also had a vector unit for 3D graphics. Pretty impressive given Intel's other project at the time was the 80486.

Ironically despite being quite a potent processor for it's day NeXT used it as a graphics co-processor!