home .. forth .. nosc mail list archive ..

[NOSC] Chuck Moore website and new Forth chips

Are there people to group fund such an effort?
Exactly how much more than the 14K would it take
for Chuck's time, using his $100/hr = $4000/week
lets say he needs 3months that comes out to $62K.
Are there say 12 people willing to put up 5k each
to help this thing along?  Chuck might be willing to
work for less if it is a group rather than comercial
effort, in which he would still retain all rights.  

I think that there are a lot of possibilities here,
with silicon processing being a art rather than a
science, the chip costs come more from the fact that
not every transistor or wire is perfect so the fabs
need to test every chip and toss those that don't pass
for speed or functionality.  Some poeple particalarly
HP Labs have done work with systems with known flaws
and the system routes around the problems.  At 0.18um
you can't expect more than something like 50% fully
functional chips but if you are willing to call 20
cpus good enough, then you withstand a failure of 20%
which increase yields greatly.  Of course if your one
and only failure is in a main bus elemnet or I/O block
your toast, but still, you beat the odds by a large
margin.  This should be very attriactive to consumer
electronics companies, which end up avoiding test and
building products and just doing a final test and
tossing failures in the trash as they need to keep
costs down and repair on small low cost devices isn't
cost effective.  

The space people (NASA and sattalite builders should
also be interested as then can have redundant
processors and just switch to another when a gama ray
takes out one processor.

I would suggest that this be retargetted somewhat as
processor seems a little overkill, 16 or 9 (assuming
you like squared numbers) seems more reasonable and
the SRAM at 4ns (250 MHz before timing margins
on-chip), would need to get shared between 25
processors.  Assuming they are doing similar things
this leaves only an effective 10MHz per processor
while they are running at 2400MHz, so unless the
application is heavily, heavily inner loops thay will
spend a great amount of time twidling thier thumbs
awaiting thier turn on the bus.  Even running solid
multiplies at 125M this still leaves a large margin
for data transfers.  So firstly I'd trim down the
number of processors and might suggest looking at
pairing the processor with a x36 chip instead of the
x18 to get two "18 bit words" per cycle and
effectively running the memory at 500MHz x18.  

Another area that I might suggest a change is the
memory per processor 384 words might be 1K words if
the number of processors is trimmed down to 16 or 9 so
you would be more likely to run without needing to
load or store data as frequently.

I might be interested in contributing to such an
effort, I would need to know more about Chuck's
experience and how likely the first try is likely to
work (Murphy's Law and all).  I bought one of the
original P21 chips and I beleive that those didn't
function untill the 8th run so this is never a slam
dunk especially if 0.18 and TSMC are new to his
--- Eric Laforest <ecl@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> On Tue, Jul 03, 2001 at 02:31:46PM -0700, Jeff Fox
> thus spake:
> > Eric Laforest wrote:
> > > Actually, is he planning to release the sources 
> > > to his ColorForth/OKAD II
> > > systems on this site?
> > 
> > ColorForth will get source and object files soon.
> Very cool.
> > As to the full five hundred lines of source to
> > and the full source to the chips themselves that
> is 
> > something else. He has wanted to get paid
> something 
> > for the twenty years of work he has invested into
> > chip designs mostly without pay.  Chuck is past
> > a reasonable retirement age given his family
> history.
> > 
> Hmm.....~14000$US for a run of 25 packaged chips
> from MOSIS.
> This means ~560$/chip. (somewhat more really to
> cover Chuck's consulting fees)
> This is not an impossible sum for many people.
> Is there interest enough in 25 or more people to
> fund a run of x25/F21 chips?
> At that cost, a group of determined enthusiasts
> could fund yearly
> or half-yearly runs with rewards of helping Chuck,
> getting cool
> technology and furthering MISC as a whole.
> > 
> > One problem I see with that is the one of
> > where that would lead.  The main interest so far
> > has not been from "talking chinese doll makers" as
> > someone wrote in one of the other mail lists.
> > The chips may just end up as weapons anyway but
> > it has been an issue.
> Indeed a difficult situation to avoid.
> Eric LaForest
> ------------------------
> To Unsubscribe from this list, send mail to
> Mdaemon@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx with:
> unsubscribe NOSC
> as the first and only line within the message body
> Problems   -   List-Admin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Main 4th site   -   http://www.

Do You Yahoo!?
Get personalized email addresses from Yahoo! Mail

To Unsubscribe from this list, send mail to Mdaemon@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx with:
unsubscribe NOSC
as the first and only line within the message body
Problems   -   List-Admin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Main 4th site   -   http://www.