Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 30th Jun 2005 12:27 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems There are increasing rumors that Alpha might be brought back to life. The Inq sets the big 'if' aside and explores the possiblities: "What if there really is a will to get Alpha back into the changed market? What sort of chip would it have to be to have that good chance of success, if any?"
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@rosomak
by rosomak on Thu 30th Jun 2005 13:53 UTC

The alpha instruction set was specially designed with the avoidance of synchronization points and congested resources like for example flag bits in mind. This was one of the features of this IS which permitted the implementation to excel in clock speed. The handling of system level instructions was very elegant too thus allowing it to remain small on silicon but still serve the needs of past and current operating systems.

I'm not going to digress in to the zillions of memory addressing modes of the 386 and the tons of instructions sets this architecture contains (8086 with segments, 80286 with segments, 386 with segments TLBs 48 extensions any much much more not used crap too). However a lot of people showing PowerPC as the panacea in front of an 386 forget to mention how inadequate it is on the system level.