3600(IFU), 3645, 3675 machines to be junked

Cyber Surfer cyber_surfer@wildcard.demon.co.uk
Tue, 13 May 1997 18:56:27 +0100

At 09:27 13/05/97 -0700, you wrote:
>Ya'know what would be really, really cool?
>Take one of those Symbolics 3600 cabinets
>and now instead of one 36bit processor, it gets stuffed
>with 36 100mhz Pentium motherboards on a 100mb local
>network, with a 36gb RAID disk array, on a T5 line to the internet.

That sounds like the kind of machine I sometimes find myself
dreaming about, only it doesn't use Pentiums, but a network of
chips combining CPU and RAM, plus optical links. Some chips
could have specialised functions, like DSP or I/O. Others might
be more like an Ivory processor.

What did Sun call it? The Network is the machine? Hmm. I like
the opposite, where the machine is the network.

>It's not just a single user machine, but this one machine
>is running a WebMall (ala www.viaweb.com) supporting 100's of companies
>doing business over the internet, running a WebSearch (ala yahoo.com)
>engine and resource directory,
>WebMail, maintaining 1000's of people mail (ala mail.com),
>and a host of other Web-based things we don't even know could exist
>yet.  The whole thing maintained by a staff of Lisp programmers,
>not one being in the same building as the machine itself.


>The glory days are here again, 00's style.

They are indeed.

>Pure Fantasy or Possible Reality?  I've already made up my mind which one.

Not entirely fantasy, I think. People have been stuffing machines
full of processors for years. More recently, people have been
construction render farms with Pentium motherboards. Put them
all in one box and you've got a machine very much like the one
you've described. If there was enough demand for machines like
this, some effort might be made to reduce the cost, perhaps
resulting in the kind of machine that I described.

Who knows? Preston Briggs?

Martin Rodgers
Enrapture Limited
<URL:http://www.wildcard.demon.co.uk> You can never browse enough
Future generations are relying on us
It's a world we've made - Incubus   
We're living on a knife edge, looking for the ground -- Hawkwind