Transmeta's New Processor 
Author Message
 Transmeta's New Processor

As most of you know, Transmeta finally  released some
details of its new processor family on Wednesday. As
I look this over, it occurs to me that it is another
Ada compiler opportunity.  The software environment
is based on Linux.  Check out the details at:

          http://www.*-*-*.com/

Richard Riehle



Tue, 09 Jul 2002 03:00:00 GMT  
 Transmeta's New Processor

Quote:

> As most of you know, Transmeta finally  released some
> details of its new processor family on Wednesday. As
> I look this over, it occurs to me that it is another
> Ada compiler opportunity.

By default, the chip comes with software in ROM that handles
normal Intel IA-32 instructions, so existing Ada compilers for
IA-32 (aka x86) will work on the Transmeta.  The software in
ROM converts the IA-32 instruction stream into an instruction
stream for the underlying VLIW hardware.  It uses caching to
avoid having to retranslate the same instruction repeatedly.

I suppose you might take the transmeta as an opportunity to
develop a completely new instruction set tailored to Ada, but
one of the features of Transmeta is that they can change the
underlying "hardware" anytime they want, and the only thing
affected is the ROM'ed software.  If you designed your own ISA,
you would have to update the translation software for your ISA
as well, which would require a pretty "cozy" relationship with
Transmeta.

I do expect them to create a version of the Transmeta ROM that
directly executes Java byte codes some day.  That might be an
interesting Ada target, though Java byte code is annoying in that
there is no way to stack-allocate a composite object -- everything
composite has to be allocated in the heap.

Quote:
> ... The software environment
> is based on Linux.  Check out the details at:

>           http://www.transmeta.com

> Richard Riehle


--

Technical Director, Distributed IT Solutions  (www.averstar.com/tools)
AverStar (formerly Intermetrics, Inc.)   Burlington, MA  USA


Tue, 16 Jul 2002 03:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 2 post ] 

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