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Old 25 February 2017, 02:15   #31
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Kansas
Posts: 1,284
Originally Posted by absence View Post
From what you say, it seems like we agree that Intel had CISC expertise, and not only "at that time" (mid-90s). They wouldn't be able to design or produce their CPUs otherwise.
Intel had knowledge to design and fab chips including CISC processors. C= owned MOS Technologies had knowledge to design and fab chips including CISC processors which was more advanced than that of Intel (MOS 6502 was superior to Intel 8080 and Motorola 6800). Chuck Peddle came from MOS and persuaded Jack Tramiel to make computers and not just calculators. Chuck Peddle worked on the Motorola 6800 which he considered the first microprocessor (not Intel 4004 or 8008 which he considered "calculator chips"). He left Motorola when they were not interested in making a low cost 6800 and created the 6501 and 6502. MOS had 70% fab success rates compared to 70% failure rates which allowed them to bring the cost of the 6502 down to $25 (every chip designer had their own fab at that time). It was so cheap that people thought it was a scam but it was Chuck's vision to mass produce them to be used everywhere. He also went on to develop the first personal computer in the C= PET which beat Apple to market (by 6 months) after deciding not to buy them for $150,000. My point is that C= had more CISC expertise with MOS and Chuck Peddle (he made the microprocessor affordable and created the first personal computer) than Intel did at the time C= bought MOS. Intel was behind MOS, Motorola and TI in their chip technology. Intel was behind at the time the 68000 came out. It was about the time of the 80286 and 80386 that Intel was catching up in technology fast using the cash flow from the PC. It is here where they were learning modern CISC techniques (same as Motorola) like pipelining and caches which did not exist before. Motorola was becoming a CISC expert too (68060) but jumped the fence to what looked like greener pastures with RISC. It is a little confusing depending on which time period is looked at but Intel was far from the leader in microprocessor technology (which was CISC) in the 8 bit era and half way through the 16 bit era. They were playing catch up and were lucky IBM chose an inferior Intel processor for their PC or they may not have even survived. Yes, Intel turned it around and was the world experts in modern CISC by the mid-90s.
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