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Please fill me in....

   Date: Fri, 22 Dec 89 11:05 EST
   From: barmar@Think.COM (Barry Margolin)

       Date: Thu, 21 Dec 89 08:45 PST

       Maybe I'm mistaken about the general tone of this Symbolic vs.
       "Conventional" machines in the area of price/performance/environment but
       it sounds to me like some of these unix machines are now viable
       alternatives to 36xx's.


   No.  In order to run Lisp effectively, you need a decent amount of
   memory (16Mb, I guess) and a local paging disk.  This would bring the
   total cost of the workstation up to $15-20K.


I have a Sun 3/60 with 20Mb of memory.  The main lisp program I run on
it is the Boyer Moore theorem prover.  It has some (maybe lots) of
declarations.  It runs faster on my Sun (under Austin Kyoto Common
Lisp [AKCL]) then on the Symbolics.  I do not have a local paging
disk.  However if you run AKCL (or Lucid for that matter) with a large
enough Lisp image you lose big during garbage collection.  This is
because of the large number of page faults generated.  Lucid seems to
be a bit better about garbage collecting, but the same problem will
arise at some point.  AKCL runs real fast, but the debugger is, to be
charitable, primitive.  I don't know what a Sun 3/60 with 20Mb costs,
but I would guess that it is under 20K.  Of course we also have a Sun
3/280 with 32 Mb and several big fast disks for paging for each 5 or 6