PDP-11: Disk over Serial proposal

Erin Corliss zomad at rio.com
Tue Dec 9 08:19:01 AEST 1997

On Mon, 8 Dec 1997, Daniel A. Seagraves wrote:

> Freak show?  Actually, an emulator on a PC would be more of a freak show!

Well, personally I think it's the *realness* of the thing that sells
tickets to freak shows.  You can paint all the pictures of two headed
babies you want, but the guy who has a living one in a jar is the one who
draws the crowd.  8^)

> I have come to the conclusion that PCs are freaks - REAL computers come in
> racks!  The bigger the better, unless I can't store it...

I'm not going to argue for PC's.  My roommate & I have about 20 of them
lying around and we've been working furiously lately to consolidate them
into one big rackmounted, networked Linux system.  In fact one of the
projects that's been slowly moving toward the front of my mind is to
modify the forking and piping system in Linux so that the OS can
dynamically allocate networked motherboards when it needs to run new
tasks...  Like if you run two tasks from the console it will run one on
the local machine and pick a remote machine on the network to run the next
one, then pipe the output from both of them back to the console so they
both appear to have been run on the local machine.  It wouldn't increase
the "BogoMips" but it would be nice for graphics rendering,
inexpensive multiuser systems, or anything else that needs or can use
multiple processes.  But I digress.  Yes, PC's are built like a psychotic
dog-mansion, but unless someone offered me a PDP-11 with a 64-bit data bus
that was made with modern chip manufacturing techniques and had a decent
user interface & peripherals, I'd still choose a PC over a PDP-11.

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