Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 15th May 2010 08:49 UTC, submitted by kragil
Amiga & AROS A few weeks ago, Novell and Red Hat jointly fended off a patent infringement suit thrown their way by a patent troll. The patent in question more or less came down to the concept of virtual desktops - and thanks to Groklaw, several people helped in finding cases of prior art. The most interesting one of all? A carefully restored and working Amiga 1000 demonstrated to the judge and jury.
Thread beginning with comment 424654
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

The Amiga’s graphics hardware is still ahead of the game. Not in power, but in design.

The IBM reference platform, and GPUs on an IRQ bus is the worst possible design hacked together by IBM without any consideration for the future.

IBM gave the industry a retarded monkey, and the industry strapped rockets to it.

Remember to put this in perspective -- the first consumer 2D/3D graphics cards started appearing in 1995. Over 10 years after the Amiga.

10 years in computing is an age. Ten years ago we were using Windows 98 / NT with 32-128 MB of RAM.

We are amazed at the realism of graphics produced now, but that’s only been possible after enough money was thrown at an inefficient and inappropriate design. The success of the IBM PC put the graphics industry back 10 years. Had we started with the Amiga and gone from there, films like Avatar would have come out ten years ago.

I have yet to see any innovation in the graphics space that isn’t throwing more horespower at the problem.

Reply Parent Score: 4

MORB Member since:
2005-07-06

At one point in time, the amiga graphics hardware was in some ways more advanced than the PC stuff.

But actually the PC hardware was simpler. Less capabale but simpler and ultimately able to scale up to do much more interesting things.

The amiga hardware provided clever ways to achieve things with the available tech at the time but it had no future. I'm pretty sure that if commodore alive and was able to continue the amiga they would have went the same direction as the pc hardware.

A lot of the things that the amiga guys invented were because nothing similar existed. They were probably much more pragmatic than people believe and would have abandoned their various proprietary technologies and used industry-standard equivalents such as PCI instead of zorro.

As far as graphic chips are concerned they'd either have went a similar direction to what we have now (ie stop with the raster-based tricks and just use a simple, plain framebuffer and have a dedicated, flexible processor able to render anything in it), or more likely they'd have stopped doing their own graphics hardware.

Reply Parent Score: 3

chris_l Member since:
2010-02-14

A lot of the things that the amiga guys invented were because nothing similar existed. They were probably much more pragmatic than people believe and would have abandoned their various proprietary technologies and used industry-standard equivalents such as PCI instead of zorro.

Actually, the Amiga graphics chipset had a lot in common with the Atari 8-bit graphics chipset.

Reply Parent Score: 2

FierceGuppy Member since:
2010-05-16

The Amiga’s graphics hardware is still ahead of the game. Not in power, but in design.


Not according to its designer.

Jay Miner Speech (1989).

Questioner: "Is there anything that you would have done differently to the Amiga before it was released that you hadn't already told us about."

...


Jay Miner: "Also I probably, in hindsight, I would've designed it with pixel graphics instead of bit-plane graphics. They're a little more standard and versatile now, it turns out. The bit-plane graphics allow you to move data around much faster because you have less data to move... if you have very few bits per pixel... which was the case of the '64 and the early Amiga, we went mostly with four bit-planes, five bit-planes, three bit-planes which means four/five bits of information defining each pixel. But they were arranged in bit-plane fashion so we could move 16-bits at a time with the computer rather than moving three or four bits at a time if they were pixel orien... Well, now with memory the way it is and computer designs the way they are, moving 16-bits of a single pixel, to define single pixel, is more efficient in terms of high colour quality and lots of colour definitions. So I would've... In hindsight I would've done that differently."

Reply Parent Score: 3

-pekr- Member since:
2006-03-28

Kroc, you are right. And I don't know, if you even know, that AAA chipset was done, when Commodore went under. But not only that - AAA was being regarded as "last of its kind", and Dr. Ed Hepler did Hombre chip, which integrated GPU into CPU and allowed parralelism. In 1993? Isn't it a little bit funny, that now Intel and others are doing the same, and are calling it an revolutionary idea? :-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amiga_Hombre_chipset

Reply Parent Score: 1