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guibrush
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Thu 16 Feb 2017 08:52
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yes, that's my opinion too.

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ericdc30
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Thu 16 Feb 2017 17:12
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rshimada wrote:
ericdc30 wrote:
I think many people would like to see 68K Macintosh Apollo accelerators.
I think that there would be almost no interest in 68K Mac accelerators.
68K Mac production stopped around the same time that Commodore went bankrupt.
Apple still produces Macs.
Most people interested in 20 to 30 year old Macs want to use them as they were. (Only 2 of the models that you listed had color displays!)
Fans of the Amiga, Atari ST and X68000 (strong gaming computers) would likely have the most interest in the Apollo core.

Looking at youtube it seems people are interested in vintage Macs including upgrading them:
https://youtu.be/5UBRUyofiiU 823,260 views
https://youtu.be/5GivbpvLpm4 398,639 views
https://youtu.be/wXWlJFrX19s 210,422 views
https://youtu.be/IqylhuJdK2g 180,251 views

Also the trend seems to favour vintage Macs (see https://www.google.com/trends/explore?q ... osh%20Plus ).

Where are you getting your data? Are you just going by gut feeling?

By the way the black and white screen and UI is part of the charm of these machines. Why do Mac people need an accelerator? The same reason you use an Amiga in 2017 nostalgia and curiosity that's all. Whenever people get a vintage machine they almost always want to max out the specs to extend the range of possibilities. What fun is a Macintosh Plus with 1MB or 4MB of RAM or with a 68000 running at 8MHz and a 20MB HDD (if you're lucky)? People want to see a 500HP V8 in a Austin Mini that is what makes it fun.


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ne_one
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Fri 17 Feb 2017 06:28
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ericdc30 wrote:
People want to see a 500HP V8 in a Austin Mini that is what makes it fun.
And by all accounts, there are quite a few Austin Minis already in a queue with their bonnets propped up waiting for a 500 hp V8. ;)

It would be wonderful to explore lots of weird and wonderful possibilities for Vampire acceleration, but the team really needs to prioritize fulfilling the existing demand and being able to support the user base.

Following that, the standalone variation is compelling to many of us because it offers options without having to retrofit ratty old hardware. It too could also accommodate a sizable number of platforms.

And of course, an ASIC implementation also has the potential to make the 68080 suitable for general purpose use - as they say in the automotive world... there is no replacement for displacement.

As far as Macs are concerned, if the demand is there we should expect to see contributions from that community towards Vampire development.


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guibrush
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Fri 17 Feb 2017 08:11
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The biggest problem with retro-fitting hold hardware is that this old hard is no more so reliable after all these years. So, the final goal of the team remain the standalone system. It doesn't mean that ther will not be other "old hardware" accelerator, but this is not the final vision.

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gregthecanuck
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Fri 17 Feb 2017 11:11
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Yes... basically picking back up from where C= and M dropped the ball. :)


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ericdc30
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Fri 17 Feb 2017 16:03
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ne_one wrote:
ericdc30 wrote:
People want to see a 500HP V8 in a Austin Mini that is what makes it fun.
And by all accounts, there are quite a few Austin Minis already in a queue with their bonnets propped up waiting for a 500 hp V8. ;)
A Macintosh Plus on eBay would cost you ~100 USD. Obviously a Austin Mini and a 500HP V8 required a substantial investment which is why people are not lining up to do it. The metaphors was more on how much fun it would be.
ne_one wrote:
It would be wonderful to explore lots of weird and wonderful possibilities for Vampire acceleration, but the team really needs to prioritize fulfilling the existing demand and being able to support the user base.
I have to disagree here. More revenue means more resources to deal with these things. Although I will grant you that things are not black and white. There might be an immediate need to stabilize and improve the platform. However doing this has diminishing returns if the market already owns the hardware.
ne_one wrote:
Following that, the standalone variation is compelling to many of us because it offers options without having to retrofit ratty old hardware. It too could also accommodate a sizable number of platforms.
This will work if the cost is low. I think the hardware is important for the nostalgia factor. Perhaps this would be better as an ASIC product rather than an expensive FPGA (for cost reasons). Perhaps there is a business case for an FPGA standalone AMIGA compatible but I doubt it will make anyone rich.
ne_one wrote:
And of course, an ASIC implementation also has the potential to make the 68080 suitable for general purpose use - as they say in the automotive world... there is no replacement for displacement.
I have to disagree with you on this. This market is already well served by the ARM platforms because of the large software ecosystem and community I think realistically 68K has no chance in this market. Perhaps there is still room in IoT and small embedded devices (especially ones not capable of running Linux). To be perfectly honest with you however I would rather see the RISC V architecture win in this area due to it's openness and the amount of attention it is receiving from big players like Google, NVIDIA, Intel etc... That aside there are a lot of legacy embedded 68K projects out there that could benefit from new hardware so maybe there is a real opportunity for an ASIC like this.
ne_one wrote:
As far as Macs are concerned, if the demand is there we should expect to see contributions from that community towards Vampire development.
Contributions? The vampire project is closed source.


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ne_one
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Fri 17 Feb 2017 22:35
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ericdc30 wrote:
A Macintosh Plus on eBay would cost you ~100 USD. Obviously a Austin Mini and a 500HP V8 required a substantial investment which is why people are not lining up to do it. The metaphors was more on how much fun it would be.
I was being irreverent - I'm suggesting that there are a lot of existing Vampire orders that still need to be filled before any other avenues are explored.
ericdc30 wrote:
There might be an immediate need to stabilize and improve the platform. However doing this has diminishing returns if the market already owns the hardware.
This project has evolved over several years. There may be tremendous opportunities in store but if you can't meet existing short term demand widening the scope is going to lead to problems.
ericdc30 wrote:
Perhaps there is a business case for an FPGA standalone AMIGA compatible but I doubt it will make anyone rich.
The entire effort is not being motivated by revenue. Arguably it should.
ericdc30 wrote:
I have to disagree with you on this. This market is already well served by the ARM platforms because of the large software ecosystem and community I think realistically 68K has no chance in this market.
Which suggests that the Vampire would need to compete against other low-cost single-board solutions. It's not even in the same spectrum.

The standalone hardware was reportedly completed a while ago. Evidently the Apollo team allocated resources accordingly.
ericdc30 wrote:
Contributions? The vampire project is closed source.
If enterprising members of the community wished to see support expanded to include Mac systems, there are many areas in which they could contribute - including, but not limited to code.

In principle, I think we all agree that leveraging the Vampire would be great for everyone. But at the same time, the team behind it is likely best suited to doing the technical development and partnering with others to turn the project into a true business venture. So far, it's not clear that the team is motivated by that prospect - perhaps philosophically more than anything.


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SamuraiCrow
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Sat 18 Feb 2017 10:19
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The models of Macs that a V500 could be used in are mainly monochrome. The color Macs would need a full motherboard swap. Why waste efforts on an expensive case mod when a ROM image and a copy of Fusion or Shapeshifter would be just fine and good.


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rshimada
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Sat 18 Feb 2017 18:43
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I’ve gone nuclear. Some readers may want to skip right past this post.
ericdc30 wrote:
rshimada wrote:
ericdc30 wrote:
I think many people would like to see 68K Macintosh Apollo accelerators.
I think that there would be almost no interest in 68K Mac accelerators.
68K Mac production stopped around the same time that Commodore went bankrupt.
Apple still produces Macs.
Most people interested in 20 to 30 year old Macs want to use them as they were. (Only 2 of the models that you listed had color displays!)
Fans of the Amiga, Atari ST and X68000 (strong gaming computers) would likely have the most interest in the Apollo core.
Looking at youtube it seems people are interested in vintage Macs including upgrading them:
https://youtu.be/5UBRUyofiiU 823,260 views
https://youtu.be/5GivbpvLpm4 398,639 views
https://youtu.be/wXWlJFrX19s 210,422 views
https://youtu.be/IqylhuJdK2g 180,251 views

Also the trend seems to favour vintage Macs (see https://www.google.com/trends/explore?q ... osh%20Plus ).
The only upgrade in the videos is replacing a SCSI drive.

The statistics listed are worthless: “views” do not mean “owns or is planning to own”. YouTube is especially volatile; in https://twitter.com/Techmoan/status/818604957251334144 Techmoan wrote:
Quote:
Always a bit sad seeing videos that took years to assemble, fade after 48hrs, but it's all part of the YouTube game...so on to the next one
The “Gangnum Style” video has over 2 billion views - how many people danced that way as a result?

A practical problem with creating accelerators for 68K Macs is that there were too many models; see https://wiki.68kmla.org/List_of_Apple_m ... _processor
Quote:
Where are you getting your data? Are you just going by gut feeling?
My comments are entirely intuitive.

I’m involved in retro computing so think I have an understanding of it. I remember when the Apple II, Commodore PET and TRS-80 were new.

My career has included writing software for computers such as the Apple II and Commodore 64. That job allowed me to see a Macintosh on the day that it was announced.

When the first issues of AmigaWorld and MacWorld magazines were published I purchased them.

Our house has a number of (color) Macs and I am using one now.
Quote:
By the way the black and white screen and UI is part of the charm of these machines.
The early Macs have a 9 inch black and white screen with a resolution of 512 x 342.
9 inch black and white screens were common enough on early Apple IIs. Consequent green screens were larger.

At the Amiga 30th Event, Ron Nicholson mentioned that when he was at Apple, Steve Jobs had said that the Mac would never have color.
Quote:
Why do Mac people need an accelerator? The same reason you use an Amiga in 2017 nostalgia and curiosity that's all.
Accelerators are created for software that is too slow to be usable.

The Vampire has ignited interest because it allows an Amiga to be used for some of today’s computing.

Amiga users are extremely determined and innovative people, which is subject deserves a post by itself. Mac users don’t come anywhere near this.
Quote:
Whenever people get a vintage machine they almost always want to max out the specs to extend the range of possibilities. What fun is a Macintosh Plus with 1MB or 4MB of RAM or with a 68000 running at 8MHz and a 20MB HDD (if you're lucky)?
For the casual reader, maxing out a Mac Plus isn’t difficult because it has:
  • 2 serial ports (one can be connected to LocalTalk)
  • A floppy drive port (can support the HD20 hard drive)
  • A SCSI port
  • A mono speaker port
You’ve described the machine with charm and now it’s no fun?!

Now I understand: You want an SE/30. For the casual readers:
  • The Mac Plus was the first usable Macintosh. It was the first personal computer to have a built in SCSI port. The Amiga was announced before the Mac Plus.
  • The SE/30 has a 16Mhz 68030 and FPU. It has two internal drive bays, one usually has a SCSI drive. It has a Processor Direct Slot allowing for upgrades.
I would hope that most Mac Plus owners who want a faster machine would buy one - they’re affordable now.
Quote:
People want to see a 500HP V8 in a Austin Mini that is what makes it fun.
The value of having a computer is using software.

Using an accelerator just to get a better benchmark number is a stunt, a gimmick.

A 500HP V8 Mini can only be fun when there’s a good stretch of road to drive it on.

What are you going to run on a Mac Plus to make creating an accelerator worth the effort?


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ne_one
Post subject: Re: stand alone vampire board Posted: Sat 18 Feb 2017 20:49
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rshimada wrote:
I’ve gone nuclear. Some readers may want to skip right past this post.
Quick... someone start preparing the pancake batter. ;)
rshimada wrote:
The value of having a computer is using software.
Which really is a profound irony with the Amiga because the OS is dated and tightly coupled with expensive, dead hardware.
rshimada wrote:
What are you going to run on a Mac Plus to make creating an accelerator worth the effort?
See above.

Setting aside whether or not the Vampire is even viable for the Mac, there are lots of thriving industries built upon seemingly improbable foundations - the Amiga is a perfect example.

It always comes down to the same basic principle: will the product or service offer a reasonable return on the investment?

I'm sure a lot of people are astonished that 2,000 pre-orders have been made for the Vampire accelerators and 500 X5000 and 1,000 A1222 motherboards were produced.

Either way, it should be very easy to assess the demand for the Vampire in other markets without speculating.


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