The 88110 CPU and the RISC workstations that never were

At the beginning of the Nineties both Apple and NeXT were planning to unveil new RISC machines, powered by the Motorola 88110 CPU. At that point the Motorola 68000 family, also known as 68k or m68k, was clearly a dead end and it was time to move on.

The MC88110 was part of a new RISC architecture from Motorola, the 88000, dubbed m88k, and looked like the right solution for both businesses, though it arrived a bit late on the market.

Originally called the 78000, to stress its kinship with the 68000, the new architecture promised to outclass the performance of the processors used in top of the line Macintoshes and NeXT workstations. (more…)

Friday 28 July 2017, 11:56 am
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Apple’s Babelfish

Babelfish was a technology part of the ill-fated Apple-IBM Taligent project in the early Nineties.

Babelfish t-shirtTotally unrelated to Yahoo!’s translation service but sharing the same Douglas Adams reference, Apple’s Babelfish was a network communications framework and the name was chosen because it was designed to support multiple communication protocols.

It disappeared leaving no trace: well, almost, if you don’t consider the promotional t-shirt made by the team which also shows the Taligent logo on the sleeve.

The t-shirt actually contains another tidbit of geek culture: the fish depicted isn’t an original illustration but is taken from a print by M.C. Escher.

Thursday 19 February 2009, 1:10 pm
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