Linked by Kroc Camen on Tue 22nd Jun 2010 12:46 UTC
Amiga & AROS The fabled Amiga X1000 has been spotted in the wild, in the homeliest of places--Station X, a.k.a Bletchley Park. "The AmigaOne X1000 is a custom dual core PowerPC board with plenty of modern ports and I/O interfaces. It runs AmigaOS 4, and is supported by Hyperion, a partner in the project. The most interesting bit, though, is the use of an 500Mhz XCore co-processor, which the X1000's hardware designer describes as a descendant of the transputer - once the great hope of British silicon." With thanks to Jason McGint, 'Richard' and Pascal Papara for submissions.
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Fixed 32-bit length instructions, makes determining code boundaries dead simple. x86's variable length instructions may be better for code density but since you're talking modern systems density no longer matters. Also, 32 general purpose registers means that custom ABIs can be used that keep necessary data in registers at all times, completely removing the memory latency (3 clock CAS latency is huge for an address bus that's already 1/3 CPU clock, and I've seen memory sticks, even new ones, that are even much higher than that, in the 5+ latency range).

Additionally, the instruction set itself, aside from being a clean 4 byte width, is clean and, dare I say, beautiful. Yes, that's a bias, but it's my bias, and you were asking why _I_ would pay extra for ppc over x86.

Besides, it's a little bit of geek nostalgia to have something that's different from everyone else like existed before x86 took over everything.

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renox Member since:

I disagree here: I think that ARM Thumb2 is an improvement (MIPS has the same thing): 16/32 bit RISC ISA give nearly the same code density as x86 but are still much simpler compared to CISC brain dead very long instructions..

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aliquis Member since:

Aren't PPC from AFTER x86 took over? ..

And AMD64 has been around for what now? Close to 10 years?

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chmeee Member since:

In 1994, when ppc was first introduced in macs, x86 was only prevalent on the desktop, not anywhere else. Now it's common in the server market, replacing SPARC and POWER, and Itanium. So PPC is from a time before x86 took over everything. The AMD64 spec is from 2000, but the first processor wasn't released until 2003.

Reply Parent Score: 1