Subject: Re: Slightly Off-Topic...
To: Dave McGuire <>
From: Michael Kukat <>
List: port-alpha
Date: 06/25/2001 23:33:03
Hi !

On Mon, 25 Jun 2001, Dave McGuire wrote:
> > You call the 8085 "decent"?!?!?!?  It wasn't even close to decent!!!
> > They've all been hacks ever since the 4004!
>   Ahh, good flame bait. ;)  I'll just say this: I like the 8085.

Hm. I had this thing in my education... Not that funny, but ok, it's old. I
like the 8031, it is a quite nice microcontroller. But i think the only real
processor made by Intel was the i860 (and the small brother, the i960), these
were really nice RISC-thingies.

> > I think *every* other microprocessor design ever done (except maybe the
> > silly little 6502 that I so dearly loved) was better than anything Intel
>   Good lord, the 6502?  I actually like to have some REGISTERS in my
> processors, thank you. ;)

Hey, i really like this low-cost RISC chip. This is where i learned assembly
language on my C16 and later the C64 (remember the Power Music Editor and the
Deluxe Intro Creator? and some scene stuff on C64). This CPU has a quite nice
performance, measured to it's age, it is really simple to program (this is
because it just doesn't know about much :), and you really learn how to handle
a very reduced set of registers (can we call 2 registers + accumulator a set?)

> > Of course they all paid homage back to the VAX....
>   ...which is newer than most of the processors that we discussed
> above, strangely enough.

VAX CPUs are the right implementation of CISC architecture, this is the way
god intended a CPU to be. Motorola m68k was also quite nice, but after reading
the VAX assembly language manuals, i really know, what a real CPU has to know
I like RISC design, but the VAX as a real CISC machine is perfect in my eyes.
In RISC, the MIPS CPUs were very nice, in the embedded area, the AMD29k had
really a lot of registers (was it 384?), but after 6502, x86, m68k and a bit
of Z80 i stopped coding in assembler and switched over to C.
I never really liked the Alpha CPUs, if i compare the clock/performance ratio
of these CPUs, they are not that fine as the world thinks. MIPS has lots
more power. Just compare some performance results of the R12k with 300MHz with
other CPUs. Maybe the UltraSparc with 250MHz... I recently saw a comparison
of a Sun E10k and some SGI machine... Bad results for the Sparc. And don't
forget the HP-PA CPUs.

In the 64Bit-area, i think the Alphas aren't that big. But this doesn't render
the sale of this design to Intel as Ok. It's the final death of one of the
biggest milestone setters in the whole computer industry, which DEC definitely
was in my eyes.

Just my 0.02 Euro


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