Computer Chess Club Archives




Subject: Re: Introducing "No-Moore's Law"

Author: Jeremiah Penery

Date: 23:39:08 03/01/03

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On March 01, 2003 at 20:17:14, Robert Hyatt wrote:

>On March 01, 2003 at 11:48:50, Jeremiah Penery wrote:
>>On March 01, 2003 at 10:11:13, Robert Hyatt wrote:
>Sun doesn't sell more than a single million-dollar computer a year.  They

I couldn't find specific numbers on this, but I really doubt that.  How else
could they get to $5 billion in SPARC _server_ sales last year?  Do you have any
actual data you can give?  I'd be interested to see it.

>are hopeless in that market, because that is SGI Challenge territory and the

I'd say SGI sells less big boxes than SPARC these days.  SGI is poised to have
_total_ revenue of only $1 billion in fiscal 2003.  That's counting the Itanium
machines they will begin selling soon.

>SGI eats the sparc in any benchmark ever created...  As will the big

Care to back that up with some actual data?  I can't find a single benchmark
where a MIPS chip is above the newest SPARC chips.  Nor can I find a MIPS-based
machine faster than any SPARC machine.

>itanium boxes.  Hell, even a multi-xeon will eat any sparc on a cpu for cpu
>basis without even using SMT.  :)

I believe you there.  But as you pointed out before, processor speed doesn't
matter much in the server world.

>>>But that entire segment is 5% or less of the total sales.  Probably less as
>>>mainframes are in that 5% category as well...
>>If you sell 5 systems for $5m each, or 500 systems for $1000 each, which is
>>making more money, despite being only 1% of the total volume?
>The problem is, it is 5 for $5m, or 5M for $1000.  The math is _simple_

Then the one company has only .0001% of the total sales.  I gave numbers
representing 1% of the total sales, since you think 5% was too much.  Give it
even 0.1%, and the revenue is still equal in that example.

>>I said they planned to release it for the desktop - the DEC machines, not the
>>Polywell ones - not that they ever actually did so.  I visited New Mexico Tech
>>in 1997 or so, and they had 533MHz Alpha desktop machines there.  It seemed to
>>me that they were trying to make that kind of machine standard equipment for
>>students and such.
>I have one in my lab (an alphastation from dec.)  But it was never near the
>PC price point, which left it for the "number crunchers" where it was the best

It never reached that price point because it never had the economy of scale.  If
everyone had bought one of those Alpha machines, price would have gone down
significantly (development and initial manufacturing cost amortized over a far
greater volume of processors), inspiring even more people to buy them.  It
failed to reach that critical mass.

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