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Old 03 July 2009, 01:41   #103
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Germany
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Originally Posted by gilgamesh View Post
found here

MC680x0/AAA Architecture
A   new   Amiga   architecture,   based   on   the   Advanced   Amiga 
Architecture (AAA) chipset  and the Motorola MC680x0 CPU, is 
currently in development. Current plans for this architecture are to 
produce   a   high-end   personal   computer   system,   tentatively 
designated the A5000.
There are a number of significant issues related to this architecture 
that may indicate that it is not appropriate in view of Commodore's 
current position and overall strategy:
 The compatibility of AAA-based systems with existing 
software and hardware is expected to be very low. Basic 
applications that use operating system functions should, in 
theory, function. However, more sophisticated applications that 
directly access the Amiga hardware, such as the NewTek 
Video Toaster, DeluxePaint IV-AGA by Electronic Arts, and 
most entertainment applications will be incompatible. These 
applications, which will be incompatible with AAA, represent 
a significant portion of the market for Amiga systems.
The installed base of AAA systems must be sufficently large to 
justify the developers' effort to update existing products for 
compatibility and/or support for AAA or develop new products 
for this architecture. The likely result is a "Catch-22" in which 
AAA-aware applications are not developed because the 
installed base is small and the installed base remains small 
because AAA-aware applications are not available.
 It is not apparent that the market segments that MC680x0/AAA 
systems   are   intended   to   address   have   been   completely 
identified,  nor does it appear that  likely sales to these market 
segments will provide a significant return on the investment in 
this architecture.
Specifically, Commodore's most successful markets are home 
entertainment consoles (currently addressed by the CD32 
system) and low-end personal computer  systems (currently 
addressed by the A1200 system). Although AAA does provide 
improved graphics performance and sound capabilities, the 
time to market and impact on other longer-term projects may 
not be justifiable.
In the high-end personal computer market, the MC680x0/AAA 
architecture does provide performance and features equal or 
superior to those of other platforms at similar price points, 
such as Intel 80x86-based systems running Microsoft MS-DOS 
and Windows. However, such systems have a very significant 
advantage in software base and also benefit from major 
economies of scale, due to the very large installed base of 
systems, that allow rapid cost reduction. Because of these 
factors, and the long time to market of AAA-based systems, it 
is likely that high-end AAA-based Amiga systems will not be 
competitive when they are released.
 Development time and cost for the MC680x0/AAA 
architecture is very high. With current staff, it is estimated that 
minimal operating system support for the AAA architecture 
will require six months in the most optimistic possible 
scenario. More extensive support could require up to two 
years. This is particularly significant in view of the limited 
resources available, and the impact of such an allocation on 
other projects that have potentially greater short- or long-term 
If   sufficently   large   market   segments   for   the  MC680x0/AAA 
architecture   are   identified,   with   full   consideration   of   the 
compatibility  issues and development   time,  such systems should 
be   developed   as   near-term measure   to  maintain  Commodore's 
product line. In any case, the scope of any such project should be 
limited   to   addressing   identified  market   needs   to  minimize   the 
impact   of   this   project   on   longer-term  efforts,   such   as   the  PA-
RISC/3D Graphics Engine architecture.
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