You know, just when I think I want to share some insight, I once again realize we’re still chipping flakes from the periphery The Mill’s Big Picture. It’s like every “Ah-ha!” reveals just how much more of this there is to disclose.
As Ivan repeatedly promised, the lectures are a “gross oversimplification” of The Mill reality.
The last processors I worked on that were a “compiler writer’s dream” were the CISC VAX and 68K. When Ivan mentioned the B6500, another easy compiler machine, I was immediately thrown back into the reason the B6500 hardware was so expensive: Stack machines are DOA without fast memory, and the fast B6500 memory was terribly expensive. (You could buy slow memory, but why?)
Then I worked on a CDC machine, and I saw the light: Speed is king, Then you have to do the software. Seymour Cray was my hero. Don’t know Seymour: Check this out:
I appreciate Ivan’s emphasis on The Mill being a software-driven hardware architecture, but I’m beginning to hunger for some examples (however trivial) of how the hardware implementation will be accomplished. Block diagrams or schematics would suffice, but I’d kill for some VHDL/Verilog to play with.