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Commodore's Lorraine [message #112155] Mon, 16 September 2013 13:40 Go to next message
LAVITSKY is currently offline  LAVITSKY
Messages: 72
Registered: March 2013
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Message-ID: <705@topaz.ARPA>
Date: Tue, 19-Feb-85 17:22:45 EST
Article-I.D.: topaz.705
Posted: Tue Feb 19 17:22:45 1985
Date-Received: Thu, 21-Feb-85 05:37:24 EST
Sender: daemon@topaz.ARPA
Organization: Rutgers Univ., New Brunswick, N.J.
Lines: 61

From: The.Uninformed





Hello all, 

	I'm just wondering about what happened at the recent Commodore show
discussed on the board.  How was it?  Specifically, I'm looking for information
about the new Amiga Lorraine. Was it on display?  Could you use it, or was it
kept under lock and key?  In any case, all I've heard is rumors about what
seems to be a great machine.  Can anyone confirm or deny the following:

	1)  Turbo Pascal, built in.  The Macintosh boards on the nets have
	busy with the fact that development of Turbo Pascal for the Macintosh
	has been put on a back burner in favor of the version for the Amiga.

	2)  8 Mhz 68000 cpu with expansion slots able to handle 7 Meg. I know 
	the 68000 can address much more, and 7 Meg is a lot of memory, but why
	stop there?

	3)  As for graphics and sound,  I've heard 640x300 resolution with 
	4096(!) colors.	Seperate rgb, composite video AND rf modulated signals.
	Also, there are supposed to be 256 sprites available.  Could this mean
	a graphics coprocessor?  For sound there are supposed to be 16 channels
	with stereo sound (could this mean 2 main sound outputs?).
	
	4)  Release date is purported to be sometime during the early bits
	of summer. The cost I last heard is under $700 with one disk drive.
	Is the drive a programmable format drive? - 3.5 inch???

	5)  Finally, I understand that it will run under a Mac-like environment
	replete with mouse.  This at least seems to be a good move, as I like
	the Mac's OS (I/O speed not inclusive).


By this time, I'm sure all of you who have seen the Lorraine are screaming
bloody murder about what I've said, but I have no other source of info
except for the rumor mills.  Please, I (and the rest of you I'm sure) would
like to know what's happening with this machine.  Even if the above rumors
are just rumors, and if the Atari 'Jackintoshes' make the impact they're 
supposed to, it's going to be one hell of a summer for computers.

One more thing for the rumour mill. I heard from a friend with sources
inside AT&T that AT&T is trying to buy out Commodore. What gives? Did
they really buy 5% of the stock already? Do they want it for the chip
manufacturing facilities? ...

Jonathan D. Trudel
Trudel@ru-blue.arpa


The above message is based on the 
confused ramblings of a poor and 
starving computer science student.
Any interpretation of the above 
material as fact is left up to the 
opinion of the reader, and no 
responsibility lies with the author.
-------
Re: Commodore's Lorraine [message #112165 is a reply to message #112155] Mon, 16 September 2013 13:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
doug is currently offline  doug
Messages: 117
Registered: May 2013
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Message-ID: <388@terak.UUCP>
Date: Thu, 21-Feb-85 11:45:55 EST
Article-I.D.: terak.388
Posted: Thu Feb 21 11:45:55 1985
Date-Received: Mon, 25-Feb-85 02:24:27 EST
References: <705@topaz.ARPA>
Organization: Terak Corporation, Scottsdale, AZ, USA
Lines: 26

> 2)  8 Mhz 68000 cpu with expansion slots able to handle 7 Meg. I know 
> the 68000 can address much more, and 7 Meg is a lot of memory, but why
> stop there?

I can't confirm/deny this.  But even if it's so, I don't understand your
problem with it.  At the current cost of memories, 7 Meg will cost the
manufacturer over $3000 in memory chips alone.  What with the support
chips, board costs, and markups, you could expect to spend around
$15,000 to $20,000 for 7 Meg of memory.  Even if the price of memory
drops by 2/3, you'ld still be spending over $5000 in memory for your
$700 computer.  If you had that kind of bucks, you'ld probably buy a
more powerful machine to plug the memory into.

Why stop?  Each slot connector costs money.  Address decoding chips cost
money.  The more slots, the larger the PC board, and that means more
expensive board, bigger and more expensive housing, more problems with
board warpage.  And bigger power supply (memory chips *love* power) and
more cooling fans (memory chips *dissipate* that power).

Next question:  what on earth would you *use* 7 Meg for?  Certainly
you aren't going to be writing programs that large.  And 7 Meg of
data is about 2000 typewritten pages worth.  I mean, we're talking
about a *home* computer here, not something that Bank of America is
going to use to run a 500-terminal on-line database.
-- 
Doug Pardee -- Terak Corp. -- !{hao,ihnp4,decvax}!noao!terak!doug
Re: Commodore's Lorraine [message #112171 is a reply to message #112155] Mon, 16 September 2013 13:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: @RUTGERS.ARPA:LAVITSKY@RU-BLUE.ARPA
Message-ID: <773@topaz.ARPA>
Date: Sun, 24-Feb-85 15:20:55 EST
Article-I.D.: topaz.773
Posted: Sun Feb 24 15:20:55 1985
Date-Received: Wed, 27-Feb-85 04:21:03 EST
Sender: R@+!@topaz.ARPA
Organization: Rutgers Univ., New Brunswick, N.J.
Lines: 71

From: Eric 

Well Doug Pardee replied about the Lorraine:

>> 2)  8 Mhz 68000 cpu with expansion slots able to handle 7 Meg. I know 
>> the 68000 can address much more, and 7 Meg is a lot of memory, but why
>> stop there?

>I can't confirm/deny this.  But even if it's so, I don't understand your
>problem with it.  At the current cost of memories, 7 Meg will cost the
>manufacturer over $3000 in memory chips alone.  What with the support
>chips, board costs, and markups, you could expect to spend around
>$15,000 to $20,000 for 7 Meg of memory.  Even if the price of memory
>drops by 2/3, you'ld still be spending over $5000 in memory for your
>$700 computer.  If you had that kind of bucks, you'ld probably buy a
>more powerful machine to plug the memory into.

 Sure,  you  could  expect  tp  pay  that  much  from  any   *other*
manafacturer. Don't forget, Commodore can make their own chips  (MOS
Technology) . I bet  they could offer a  1 Meg upgrade for  ~$300...
that's only ~$1800  over the  cost of  the original  machine (for  7
meg). Of  course  they  would  have  to  be  really  geared  up  for
production of  256k  RAMs.  Just  look  at a  chip  like the  SID  -
Commodore charges ~$20 to dealers  for these chips seperately  along
with 6526s, and VIC IIs - if these chips really cost Commodore  near
that much the 64  would cost over  $500 (it did  at first, but  when
production picks up, blam goes the price). I'm not saying that  they
will offer memory at such low prices, but they are the ones who  can
do it. The 64 is 64k of memory ++ and it costs around $130 now.
Strip off the support chips and processor etc. and how much do you
think the RAM costs them?

>Why stop?  Each slot connector costs money.  Address decoding chips cost
>money.  The more slots, the larger the PC board, and that means more
>expensive board, bigger and more expensive housing, more problems with
>board warpage.  And bigger power supply (memory chips *love* power) and
>more cooling fans (memory chips *dissipate* that power).

 Well, no one knows for sure what kind of scheme or design they're
gonna use to house the thing... hopefully it'll be a sexy functional
design. 

>Next question:  what on earth would you *use* 7 Meg for?  Certainly
>you aren't going to be writing programs that large.  And 7 Meg of
>data is about 2000 typewritten pages worth.  I mean, we're talking
>about a *home* computer here, not something that Bank of America is
>going to use to run a 500-terminal on-line database.
>-- 
>Doug Pardee -- Terak Corp. -- !{hao,ihnp4,decvax}!noao!terak!doug


 What could you use 7 Meg for? - How about a Multi user system based
on UN*X? Use it in the office, for data sampling, in a school... 
Picture as many RAM disks as you could ever need... running your
favorite game in one window and your terminal program in another.
The Lorraine is supposed to be Commodores' *High* end machine, they
want to compete with Apple and IBM. No one says you have to dish out
the money for 7 Meg either. Start with 512K, if you want more it's
available. It can be personal, educational, business, industrial or
scientific - If it starts with everything you need at under $700
(list - remember what can happen to the price after it hits the
shelves) then expansion capabilities make it all the more
attractive - It'll be nice to know the capability is there.

Eric Lavitsky, Maintainer of Commodore 64 Kermit.

ARPA:	LAVITSKY@RUTGERS
UUCP:	...{seismo,ut-sally,harvard,umcp-cs}!topaz!eric
SNAIL:	CPO 2765, CN 700
	New Brunswick, NJ  08903
-------
Re: Commodore's Lorraine [message #112175 is a reply to message #112155] Mon, 16 September 2013 13:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
ravi is currently offline  ravi
Messages: 85
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Message-ID: <243@eneevax.UUCP>
Date: Mon, 25-Feb-85 01:09:09 EST
Article-I.D.: eneevax.243
Posted: Mon Feb 25 01:09:09 1985
Date-Received: Wed, 27-Feb-85 21:06:17 EST
References: <705@topaz.ARPA>
Organization: U of Maryland, EE Dept., College Park, MD
Lines: 72

>From: LAVITSKY@RUTGERS.ARPA
>From: The.Uninformed

How true!! But then when you are in the rumors business you can
take it for granted.

>1) Turbo Pascal, built in.  The Macintosh boards on the nets
>have busy with the fact that development of Turbo Pascal for the
>Macintosh has been put on a back burner in favor of the version
>for the Amiga.

This is apparently true since it came straight from Philipe
Kahn(sp?) the author of turbo pascal. It is certainly an
advancement over basic. He might also be doing the OS which is
going to be integrated in with GEM.


> 2) 8 Mhz 68000 cpu with expansion slots able to handle 7 Meg.
>I know the 68000 can address much more, and 7 Meg is a lot of
>memory, but why stop there?

Lot's of memory implies several things. If you are going  to
have several megabytes you will need at least some form of
parity checking like the IBM pc. Fast I/O and a hard disk almost
become necessary otherwise the wait to fill memory will take
forever. Efficient use of megabytes of memory almost certainly
implies a multi tasking environment. If commodore has added an
mmu they almost certainly have had to introduce wait
states(foregoing costly alterernatives) slowing things down. If
you think commodore's( the designer of the slowest disk drive in
the world and the bringer of sparkle to our application
programs) going to add any of these goodies you are a bigger
sucker than I thought. Oh well, I guess we can always hope.

>3) As for graphics and sound, I've heard 640x300 resolution with
>4096(!)  colors.  Seperate rgb, composite video AND rf modulated
>signals.  Also, there are supposed to be 256 sprites available.
>Could this mean a graphics coprocessor?  For sound there are
>supposed to be 16 channels with stereo sound (could this mean 2
>main sound outputs?).

This could be the saving grace for the amiga even if commodore
manages to muck up everything else. The graphics chip set that
is supposed to be used(originally developed for atari and now
under litigation) is very exciting. It is supposed to support
raster ops in hardware and have support for  animation. The 4096
colors and 640x300 resolution is more likely to be a palette of
4096 colors with only a few available at any one time(probably
similar to atari's gtia chip). The resolution is more like
640x200 so it can drive tv sets and standard analog rgb
monitors.

>4)  Release date is purported to be sometime during the early bits
>of summer. The cost I last heard is under $700 with one disk drive.
>Is the drive a programmable format drive? - 3.5 inch???

I think cost is likely to depend on whether or not they include
slots. If they do I have a feeling it will be more like a $1000
with about 128k of ram and a disk drive

I certainly hope the amiga is a successfull machine but, if I
seem a bit sceptical it is because of my past experience with
the c64.  I am really rooting for both commodore and atari as
right now the only alternative for people wishing to upgrade is
an IBM pc(curse their segmented architecture) or an apple mac
which has it's own problems for >$2000.  I don't want to suggest
that the atari and commodore machines don't have problems but,
somehow they are easier to put up with knowing the relative
costs of the machines.
-- 
ARPA:	eneevax!ravi@maryland
UUCP:   [seismo,allegra]!umcp-cs!eneevax!ravi
Re: Commodore's Lorraine [message #112185 is a reply to message #112155] Mon, 16 September 2013 13:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
doug is currently offline  doug
Messages: 117
Registered: May 2013
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Senior Member
Message-ID: <395@terak.UUCP>
Date: Tue, 26-Feb-85 12:02:39 EST
Article-I.D.: terak.395
Posted: Tue Feb 26 12:02:39 1985
Date-Received: Fri, 1-Mar-85 20:47:03 EST
References: <773@topaz.ARPA>
Organization: Terak Corporation, Scottsdale, AZ, USA
Lines: 50

[ Can anyone really want more than 7 Megabytes? ]

>  Sure,  you  could  expect  tp  pay  that  much  from  any   *other*
> manafacturer. Don't forget, Commodore can make their own chips  (MOS
> Technology) .

True.  But so far MOS Technology has shown its strength to be in making
special-purpose chips like SIDs and VICs.  They really trailed the
industry in coming out with 64K DRAMs.  For the first two years the
C-64 was made with outside-vendor 64K DRAMs.  And since 256K DRAMs seem
to be done exclusively in CMOS while MOS Technology's expertise and
manufacturing capability is in NMOS, it'll be a few years before MOS
Technology is producing 256K or 1M DRAMs.  By then the Lorraine will
probably be obsolete (from Commodore's point of view).

Also, so far Commodore has stayed away from "upgrade" kits.  But then,
Jack Tramiel isn't running the show any more, so who knows.

>  What could you use 7 Meg for? - How about a Multi user system based
> on UN*X? Use it in the office, for data sampling, in a school... 

Just what I was afraid you were going to say.  In any given system,
(computer or otherwise) there is some component which limits the
performance.  This is lovingly called a "bottleneck".  It doesn't
matter how much you improve everything else, if you can't improve
the bottleneck things won't run faster.  In a 68000-based Unix(tm)
system, the memory is the bottleneck up to about 2Mb.  Above that
point, the 68000 becomes the bottleneck.  Putting 7Mb on a 68000-
based Unix system is a waste of money.

> Picture as many RAM disks as you could ever need...

How many *is* that?  7Mb is a *lot* of RAM disks.  I would suggest
that 2Mb would be "as many RAM disks as you could ever need..."

> favorite game in one window and your terminal program in another.

For this you need 7Mb??????  How about maybe 1MB?

> Start with 512K, if you want more it's
> available.

And you can start with a VW Beetle and upgrade it to a cement mixer
truck.  But nobody would (I don't think anybody has).  The point is
that the cost of memory is so high that if you really wanted a
multi-user Unix system, you'd simply buy a purpose-built system with
a reasonable powerful CPU, and probably an MMU and an FPU, instead
of trying to turn a home game-playing computer into a poor imitation.
-- 
Doug Pardee -- Terak Corp. -- !{hao,ihnp4,decvax}!noao!terak!doug
Re: Commodore's Lorraine [message #113860 is a reply to message #112155] Tue, 17 September 2013 14:53 Go to previous message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: riner@dsd.UUCP (john riner)
Message-ID: <413@dsd.UUCP>
Date: Wed, 27-Feb-85 18:04:48 EST
Article-I.D.: dsd.413
Posted: Wed Feb 27 18:04:48 1985
Date-Received: Sun, 3-Mar-85 03:34:12 EST
References: <773@topaz.ARPA>
Organization: AMPEX DSD, Redwood City, CA.
Lines: 19


	I still can't see why anyone would need 7 megs or more of RAM space.
We have a Workstation with 2 Megs and it can run 16 concurrent shells (each
has its own window on the screen) and you can't keep track of that many. We
have a PDP 11/44 with 2 Megs of memory which serves 64 users and 900 Megs
of disc drive so I can't see the need for 7 Megs in a multiuser system either.
	As for RAMdisk use. This is a possibility but I would think that is
a bit of overkill. 
	For all the talk of Commodore beating the price of Apples and IBMs
They can surely do that with an excellent competitive product which has
features useful to the majority of users and include the exotic in a machine
that is slightly more expensive.

-- 
	John Riner		UUCP: !fortune!dsd!riner
	AMPEX Corp
	Redwood City, CA.
		Nobody knows what I am talking about,
		so these must be my opinions and not theirs.
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