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The Register: Sony aims Emotion Engine tech at SGI's Hollywood fief

Jul 26, 2000, 14:06 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Andrew Orlowski)

"Sony used SIGGRAPH in New Orleans this week to poop on SGI's big hardware announcement of the year. Silicon Graphics revealed the replacements for its aging Onyx2 and Origin series, using a new hardware architecture."

"However Sony's Computer Entertainment division announced a 16-way SMP system called GScube, based on its MIPS-derived Emotion Engine chip, the processor that's in its Playstation2 consoles. According to Sony, GScube will top out at 97.5 gigaflops, although it's arrived at that figure by multiplying a single Emotion Engine's throughput by er, 16, a metric that SMP mavens will doubtless shoot down fairly quickly. But since the work these boxes will be doing is essentially pretty parallel anyway, we'll reserve the scepticism we'd normally aim at newcomers to the dicey world of SMP scaling."

"SGI didn't provide the customary benchmarks with its announcements, nor talk up its Linux initiatives. But it's been doing plenty of work on its own there, as well it needs to. Given the huge historic software advantage that Silicon Graphics has as a platform, the movie business and its manufacturing customers don't have too many places to go to. But for more many more bespoke technical compute jobs, Linux clusters running on basic commodity PCs have proved well up to the task, and so long as SGI remains a takeover target, its got plenty more to worry in one of its most lucrative backyards."

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