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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
From: Spock@SAMSON.CADR.DIALNET.SYMBOLICS.COM (Mr. Spock)
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