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LispM Market Share

    Date: Tue, 16 Jan 90 15:12 EST
    From: sgr@ai.ai.mit.edu (Stephen G. Rowley)

	Date: Mon, 15 Jan 90 15:38:04 CST
	From: "kosma%ALAN.kahuna.decnet.lockheed.com"%ALAN.kahuna.DECNET.LOCKHEED.COM@warbucks.ai.sri.com

			  If it wasn't for the Connection Machine I would be
	doing fortran on a sun right now (****DEFINITELY**** not by choice), and
	as it is, we will probably be concentrating more on Sun SPARC front ends
	for the connection machine rather than the symbolics, primarily due to
	issues of speed.

    Speed of the front end?  Perhaps I'm being ignorant, but why does the
    front end have to be faster?

If the CM is spending lots of time waiting for the front end to feed it
instructions or data, then some of the power of the CM is being wasted.
It's very similar to the disk I/O issue -- you're wasting money putting
an incredibly fast disk on a Lispm if the bottleneck is the driver
software.  The new CM software release includes some mechanisms for
moving some of the sequential parts of a program into the CM
microcontroller, so this issue may become less important, but you're
essentially programming in assembler when you do this, so it isn't as
pleasant as keeping the sequential stuff on the front end.