Mill Computing, Inc. Forums The Mill Architecture Grab bag of questions Reply To: Grab bag of questions

Post count: 23

– 16) What have you learned from the M1?

The Apple M1 has been a bit of a shockwave in the CPU world. Everyone was surprised what a company like Apple could get in terms of single-core performance for a consumer product, once they had control of the entire supply chain.

Are there any lessons you took from them? Anything you’ve decided to do differently after you saw their results?

– 17) What have you learned from other recent innovations?

The announcement of the Mill was almost 10 years ago, an eternity in computer times. Since then, a lot has happened, both on the hardware side (which I’m not too familiar with) and the software side. I’m thinking of WebAssembly, Fuschia, Rust and other memory-safe languages, eBPF, io_uring, etc.

Did any of these lead you to change plans or think of new features you could add to the Mill? I know you’ve said that eg the Mill would be particularly well suited to running WebAssembly, but have you considered adding instructions specifically to help WebAssembly support? To help Rust support?

(I’m thinking of the M1 which added instructions to run JS faster, and faster atomic counters since Swift and Objective-C use lots of ref-counted pointers. Mill could probably benefit from a fast bound-checks instruction.)

– 18) Any clever ideas you’ve had lately that didn’t pan out?

I know there are a lot of clever ideas you can’t talk about because you want to patent them first, but are there some clever ideas you’ve had, that you put some research effort into, and that you ultimately discarded because they didn’t pan out in practice?