[rescue] looking for SGI system, cheap

Matthew Weigel unique at idempot.net
Fri Jan 27 14:54:01 CST 2006

Joshua Boyd wrote:

> I thought they were reasonably fine with integer math, and some of their
> customers certainly use integer math a lot.

As I recall, the class of MIPS processors we're talking about (R3k, R4k, 
R5k) were at best even MHz-for-MHz equal to the Intel chips out at the 
same time.  A little later, sure, the R10k was much better than Pentium 
Pro and (I think?) Pentium II chips per MHz, although I never did hard 
comparisons for chips past that.

> While 3D rendering may be
> floating point heavy, quite a lot of 2D image processing was mostly
> integer work.

Not in my experience - colors are expressed in floating point, and 
operations that change colors are necessarily fp.  There's a lot of 
pixel addressing, but even that involved taking a fp calculation and 
figuring out which integer pixel best corresponded to the value.

> wasn't just the entertainment industry.  Also, I believe genetics
> research is commonly integer heavy.  

I think you're right.

> While SGI didn't have the greatest integer units in the world, they did
> provide massive amounts of bandwidth, which was and is essential for
> many business and scientific tasks.

Yes, that's definitely true.
  Matthew Weigel
  unique at idempot.net

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