History of Computing exam question

From: Christopher Smith <csmith_at_amdocs.com>
Date: Tue Dec 4 09:53:43 2001

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Iggy Drougge [mailto:optimus_at_canit.se]

> But who could by a VAX? And why one terminal only? The VAX
> wasn't a personal
> computer by any means.
> Not that just anyone could buy an IBM PC in '81, but chances
> were, your
> employer could.

Well, depending on your employer they might afford a VAX too. I used one
terminal as an example of a way to give your VAX a nice keyboard and
display. I didn't mean it to be an exhaustive configuration.

> OTOH, the TI99's processor had the same addressing problems
> as the 8-bitters,
> 15-bit addressing with a 16-bit word orientation led to the
> same addressable
> space as the 6502 and Z80 micros. Arithmetically, the TI99
> was a sixteen-
> bitter, but not in the common definition of sixteen bits used from the
> eighties and onwards.

AFAIR the 8088 was also very "8-bit" :) I suppose it's all in the
marketing, though.

> The PC was AFAIK released in '81.
> I wouldn't define the 68000 as a 32-bitter, only as a more
> elegant sixteen-
> bitter.

Well, we certainly agree on the "more elegant" part. ;)

> >several 32-bit systems on the market by 1984 or so (though,
> my personal
> >favorite was done in '87 with the Acorn Archimedes).

> None were IBM, though, and none could be easily cloned.

Well, no, none were IBM. (Honestly, IBM has only done a few things I like
-- all of them being more expensive than I could ever hope to afford new. :)

As for being easily cloned, I suppose you mean that Compaq must have already
done the reverse engineering work? ;)



Christopher Smith, Perl Developer
Amdocs - Champaign, IL

/usr/bin/perl -e '
print((~"\x95\xc4\xe3"^"Just Another Perl Hacker.")."\x08!\n");
Received on Tue Dec 04 2001 - 09:53:43 GMT

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