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Re: stand alone vampire board

Posted: Sun 19 Feb 2017 00:09
by ericdc30
rshimada wrote:I’ve gone nuclear. Some readers may want to skip right past this post.
ericdc30 wrote: Also the trend seems to favour vintage Macs (see https://www.google.com/trends/explore?q ... osh%20Plus ).
rshimada wrote:The only upgrade in the videos is replacing a SCSI drive.
That is true because accelerators for older Macs ageing and hard to find. People want options.
rshimada wrote: 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:
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
Yes so 800K or so people clicked on the link watched it didn't really go back to it, makes sense I didn't either.
rshimada wrote: The “Gangnum Style” video has over 2 billion views - how many people danced that way as a result?
How is that even remotely related? I challenge you to find any youtube video with more than 800 000 views featuring the AMIGA in the context of retro computing upgrades or retro computing restoration.
rshimada wrote: 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
I suggested a couple options and pointed out that the Macintosh Plus or Macintosh SE could be a good target for various reasons (see original post for details).
rshimada wrote:
Where are you getting your data? Are you just going by gut feeling?
My comments are entirely intuitive.
That explains it. You do realize that there are other demographics of people that never got exposed to the AMIGA at all right? In North America for example a total of 700,000 AMIGAs were sold compared to 6 million for the Macintosh Plus. That is why people are interested in restoring these old machines.
rshimada wrote: 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
I agree that most of the value of having a computer is in the software. It is a fact that the Mac 68K line of computers has much more software than the AMIGA. I don't want to get into a flame war over this because the AMIGA has fantastic software especially in the gaming department. But you can't in good faith ignore the fact that many of the software titles on the 68K Mac have high historical value (it shaped the software we used today) and naturally nostalgia value. Not sure how practical it would be to use it as a primary computer in 2017 however but the same can be said for the AMIGA. I think if you can do that your use of a computer is pretty limited to begin with.
rshimada wrote:
What are you going to run on a Mac Plus to make creating an accelerator worth the effort?
As a software developer I was thinking of heading over to macintoshgarden.org and explore the compilers, IDEs, assemblers and see how things evolved over the years. Perhaps revisit old games I played like Shufflepuck, SimCity, etc and various other apps I used. Maybe try to get it online with a browser. Also there are some kids games such as Arthur's Computer Adventure that my daughter would probably enjoy. But that is me personally. Having an accelerator with a tons of RAM and potentially fast disk access means I can focus on a single Macintosh Plus or Macintosh SE and not have to buy a whole lineup of computers.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... ty_Mac.png

Re: stand alone vampire board

Posted: Tue 6 Jun 2017 19:16
by vox
On Intel code expectation: That was tried on Transmeta range of CPUs. Theoretically they could
run a PPC code, or Apollo code, but Transmeta never tried it in practice and code execution as software has shown really strange, but not great results.

On expecations on nVIDIA GPUs: They are so closed even x86/x64 Linux from time suffers problem to utilized them good. They are 3D gaming kings, but they keep it to themselves (Windows and Consoles)

My expectations of FPGA Standalone (back to topic)

FPGA Standalone might also be - FPGA board, like Myst and FPGA Arcade are. That means basically as advanced core at that date, possible Cyclone V instead of III FPGA - more Mhz, DDR3 RAM, hopefully 9-pin connectors for joy/mouse, USB and Ethernet/Wi-Fi, maybe more RAM to some point of 32-bit adress table )even 080 is 64-bit design but that would require AROS m86080 64-bit which doesnt exist nor is currently planned.

One or two PCI and maybe some weird Zorro card slot would be nice,
I remember that hardware-wise fastest "Amiga bus" was on DraCo due to linear
editing needs - "RASTABAN" :-). Could something be learned there?

Expansion slots

3× DraCo Bus slots
5× Zorro II slots

Using Zorro III would have either required the presence of the Amiga custom chips or the development of a custom control logic. MacroSystem has chosen to create a simpler 32 bit bus, essentially a buffered 68040 bus with AutoConfig support, and call it DraCo Direct Bus. The specifications have never been officially published, so there are no cards made for it by third party developers. Only two cards were available from MacroSystem (Altais and Draco Motion). The third slot was meant for a real-time rendering card with a DEC Alpha processor on it, but never finished.
The Zorro II bus of DraCo runs at higher clock speed, giving about 1 MB/s extra over the standard Amiga Zorro II slots. It allows the 16 bit V-Lab Motion card to produce better quality video output, but makes many Zorro II expansion cards incompatible with the DraCo.

Busboard
The computer bus had some peculiarities. The Rastaban was a passive busboard full of expansion slots (much like S-100 busboards). It had 5 Zorro II Amiga compatible slots, and three DracoDirect slots. There was also a special cpu slot for an Alpha processor, that was never released. Zorro II slots offered a fair degree of Amiga compatible hardware options. On the other side, the DracoDirect slots provided faster speeds and 32 bit transfers, as they were merely created by exposing the majority of the microprocessor signals in those slots.

Re: stand alone vampire board

Posted: Tue 6 Jun 2017 22:42
by vox
ericdc30 wrote:
Sun 19 Feb 2017 00:09
As a software developer I was thinking of heading over to macintoshgarden.org and explore the compilers, IDEs, assemblers and see how things evolved over the years. Perhaps revisit old games I played like Shufflepuck, SimCity, etc and various other apps I used. Maybe try to get it online with a browser. Also there are some kids games such as Arthur's Computer Adventure that my daughter would probably enjoy. But that is me personally. Having an accelerator with a tons of RAM and potentially fast disk access means I can focus on a single Macintosh Plus or Macintosh SE and not have to buy a whole lineup of computers.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... ty_Mac.png
Well, I find MacOS of that time cute and clean design, kind of cute TOS like :-) I hated one button mouse and some other stuff of the time, and 68k Macs simply didnt make it to Southeast Europe (later PPC macOSX machines did went to DTP and graphics design studios). But to my understanding, there is a nice software library for m68k Mac
http://www.emaculation.com/doku.php/68k_software

It includes ... hmmm ... Photoshop and Netscape Communicator 4, Pagemaker 3.0,
and some nice games like Duke, early Wolfstein 3D and so on.

I know Basilisk runs fine, but due to hardware compatibility, it would be best if we could have some kind of MacOS X sandbox inside ... Vampire special AROS 68k, package like AmigaKit real but Hacintosh 68k :-) Its quite vintage, but yet updated to some Amiga Classic software, and extra layer of productivity could be lurking on Macintosh side. Backporting if possible.