Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 13th Sep 2012 20:00 UTC, submitted by MOS6510
Mozilla & Gecko clones "Over the past year and a half I've been spending more and more of my time working with Mozilla's latest project, Firefox OS. During that time I've fallen in love with the project and what it stands for, in ways that I've never experienced with a technology platform before." I'm not convinced just yet. I hope it succeeds, but I just doubt it actually will.
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RE[2]: Comment by Luke McCarthy
by Alfman on Sat 15th Sep 2012 17:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Luke McCarthy"
Alfman
Member since:
2011-01-28

adkilla,

"I wouldn't want the stagnation that is happening in the x86 platform to extend to ARM SoCs. If it weren't for AMD, we would all be stuck with a 32-bit ISA on x86, with an overly costly and less than optimal upgrade path to Itanium. Unfortunately we've lost the 3rd party chipset market on x86 due to having too few CPU players."

Haha, I was actually very disappointed with AMD when they told the world they were going to extend the life of x86 with a 64bit variant of it. I sincerely thought that we would be migrated to better architectures by now if AMD hadn't anchored us right back to the x86 platform (albeit with some improvements). The AMD64 ISA still suffers from a lack of GP registers compared to alternatives, which necessitates complex hacks like register renaming. The opcodes are still highly inconsistent, increasing the amount of logic needed to parse them. The whole architecture is shrouded in subtle legacy designs.

I guess we have to wait for a newcomer to replace x86-64, but now that x86 is 64bit that could take a while (x86-64 could conceivably last a few decades like the x86 did).

Reply Parent Score: 2

adkilla Member since:
2005-07-07

Given the choice over Itanium and x86-64, I'd take x86-64 anyday.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

I wasn't suggesting the choice for 64 bit desktop supremacy was only between intel processors, it's completely ironic that AMD64 is mostly responsible for keeping intel in the lead for 64bit processors.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by Luke McCarthy
by zima on Sun 16th Sep 2012 13:47 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by Luke McCarthy"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

I was actually very disappointed with AMD when they told the world they were going to extend the life of x86 with a 64bit variant of it. I sincerely thought that we would be migrated to better architectures by now if AMD hadn't anchored us right back to the x86 platform [...] The whole architecture is shrouded in subtle legacy designs.

I don't think so - if you'd take AMD out of the equation, the world would just mostly continue buying x86-32 until really hitting that 4 GiB limit ...at which point MS would just save the day by forcing PAE in their then-new (and in that alternative reality) Vista/7, and that would be it (assuming Intel management wouldn't come to their senses prior to that)

Generally, over time everything collects & grows in legacies... And considering the most likely "better" alternatives, can you really say with a straight face that we would be better off without x86-64? (consumers in general - sorry, nobody cares about asm, OS, compiler devs ;) )

Still, in a few years you might more or less get what you want(?) - the Loongson ~MIPS chips have hardware-assisted x86 emulation. Considering all the x86 licensing issues, it's of course unlikely to show up in "current" (in the future) ~Western products ...my guess: it's there (and being worked on) to be ready when P5, MMX, P6, SSE patents lapse in the coming decade (I think) - that subset of x86 should allow running virtually all really important(tm) legacy software, a perspective probably very appealing to the Chinese, in their supposed quest to technology independence.
So, you just have to move to PRC to experience it, or at least to the areas likely within their sphere of influence in the future ;p (that should be SE Asia and large parts of Latin America and Africa ...though who knows, maybe more ;p )

Reply Parent Score: 2

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

zima,

"Generally, over time everything collects & grows in legacies... And considering the most likely "better" alternatives, can you really say with a straight face that we would be better off without x86-64? (consumers in general - sorry, nobody cares about asm, OS, compiler devs ;) )"


Actually, yes I do think so. x86-64 is just the latest in a number of extensions to the antiquated architecture. Sure it's "good enough", but I think x86-64 won at the expense of competitors which will continue to me marginalised for at least another decade.


"Still, in a few years you might more or less get what you want(?) - the Loongson ~MIPS chips have hardware-assisted x86 emulation. Considering all the x86 licensing issues, it's of course unlikely to show up in "current" (in the future) ~Western products"

There's so much legal BS going down right now that I suspect you might be right. These are sad times.

Edited 2012-09-16 18:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2