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Re: Perfboard computers, VAX and others - Re: About support for rtVAX300

On 14/01/13 2:12 PM, Paul Koning wrote:

On Jan 14, 2013, at 1:40 PM, John Wilson wrote:

From: Toby Thain<toby%telegraphics.com.au@localhost>

I have
a couple of J11's sitting around, and a dozen Transputers. I'd love to
learn enough electronics, and have enough spare time, to build the
support circuitry and run them.

You definitely should!  I don't know much about the Transputer but if it's
anything like the XMOS XS1 CPU (same architect) it must be a ton of fun.

John Wilson
D Bit

Transputers are interesting beasts.  All I know is their theory, which appears 
to be small compute nodes interconnected by multiple fast message passing 
links.  So you can build a large multicomputer setup with a mesh of those.

For programming, you can use C or the like, but there's a different programming 
language (Occam) specifically designed to make use of that message passing 
machinery.  Given who created it (C.A.R. Hoare) I assume it ties into his 
research into the design of reliable distributed algorithms.

I used two T800 TRAMs in the late 1980s, attached to a NuBus card (Levco Translink) in Macintosh II series. I programmed them in C (under MPW) and yes, they are heaps of fun.

I also ported TeX, METAFONT and associated utilities to the Transputer (since evan a single T800 was so much faster than the 68020 host machine and I was using them for production work every day).



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