Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Apple Proves The Amiga Was Right

No, I don’t actually believe that. That was just my attempt at crafting a headline even more blatantly eyeball-grabbing than Is Apple Making More Advanced Chips Than Intel? 

Interesting article, though you know it isn’t exactly going to be the most interesting journalism in the world when it comes from a site called “Cult Of Mac.”

What I do enjoy is watching the eternal struggle between general-purpose chips and specialized chips that do a few things really well at the expense of everything else.  There’s no right or wrong there, of course – it’s just the tradeoff that has to be made when any hardware is designed. 

Modern smartphones are a pretty awesome demonstration of the potential of specialized chips, with lots of specialized little co-processors performing specific jobs real fast with very little power required.  As a kid, I remember wondering how a 3mhz Super Nintendo could do things that a 20mhz 386 PC couldn’t do – specialized chips, that’s how. 

Those old lumbering dinosaurs, though – the powerful general-purpose CPUs – that’s where computing moves forward.  That’s where code gets wrung out of brain cells.  The “app” you’re running on your handheld marvel was probably written by somebody sitting at one of these ancient beasts.

No comments:

Post a Comment