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Transmeta Hardware

Transmeta's New Smaller, Faster Chips Announced 235

billstewart writes "Transmeta announced their new 5900 and 5700 CPUs. They're 50% smaller than the 5800, intended for low-power, low-heat, high-speed applications, and contain an integrated Northbridge. They're sampling now, production in January 2004, and expect to have a mini-ITX board out in 1Q04. The core chip is a 128-bit VLIW hidden by x86 emulation (as opposed to their new Efficeon, which is 256-bit VLIW.) The difference between the 5900 and 5700 seems to be L2 cache size. There are several other stories on Google News."
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Transmeta's New Smaller, Faster Chips Announced

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  • Care? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by conner_bw ( 120497 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:18PM (#7884449) Journal
    With Intel dominating, apple going with IBM and Linus not working here anymore... who's using these chips?

    Kill all spammers. [si20.com] Let the irony of this sig sort em' out.
    • Re:Care? (Score:3, Informative)

      by subk ( 551165 )
      MiniITX'ers, soon. I hope to be one of them. Also, Linus is still employed by Transmeta.
      • Re:Care? (Score:3, Insightful)

        Linus is still employed by Transmeta.

        Not any more. He now works for OSDL

        • Re:Care? (Score:2, Informative)

          by BigBir3d ( 454486 )
          uh oh [helsinki.fi]. This could be confusing, as well as OT.

          Back on topic; many apps don't need P4's or AMD64 or PPC type horsepower. (I say apps as in embedded usage, not as in mozilla)
        • Re:Care? (Score:4, Informative)

          by Tough Love ( 215404 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:46PM (#7884770)
          "Linus is still employed by Transmeta."

          Not any more. He now works for OSDL

          Wrong, he is on sabbtical from Transmeta, he is still officially an employee.
          • Re:Care? (Score:5, Funny)

            by Waffle Iron ( 339739 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @06:13PM (#7885049)
            Wrong, he is on sabbtical from Transmeta, he is still officially an employee.

            But let's apply the corporate press release decoder ring:

            "He/she has made valuable contributions to the project and will be missed" -> He/she screwed up. Good riddance.

            "Is leaving to spend more time with his/her family" -> Has been ousted

            "Is leaving to pursue personal interests" -> Has been ousted

            "Gone on sabbatical" -> Has left the company for good and will never, ever return. Further press release confirming official resignation to follow within 9 months.

    • Re:Care? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by sporty ( 27564 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:24PM (#7884529) Homepage
      People who run home servers and get reamed on electric bills.
      • Re:Care? (Score:3, Insightful)

        by dpilot ( 134227 )
        It's a balance of purchase price vs electric cost. For my purposes (and electric rates) the breakeven point is just over a year between using my current cast-offs for a home server, and buying a new C3-based system.

        But I'm unaware of bargain-priced Transmetas that would reach even the payback period of a C3.
    • Re:Care? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Jungle guy ( 567570 ) <brunolmailbox-ge ... com.br minus her> on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:33PM (#7884633) Journal
      HP has a Tablet PC [hp.com] that uses Transmeta Crusoe 5800. I have used it for some minutes, and looked like a "normal" tablet with an Intel processor. But I agree with you that these Crusoe babies are rare.
    • Re:Care? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I care. I'm looking for something to replace my Athlon/1Ghz Linux box. It has done fairly well, but I setup something that has far more horsepower than my little website requires. I'm sure it's a waste of energy and I'd like to find something that fits in a small case, uses comparatively little power, and will work with RH. I'm sure I'm not alone...and so far my research has come up with fairly wasteful systems.

      Could a low end Intel-based system do it? Maybe, but I'm actually interested in a lower pow
    • Re:Care? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Plammox ( 717738 )
      It's scary to see how fast a company can lose its esteem among certian linux geeks just because "Linus doesn't work there anymore". Scary. And I thought the hallmarks of geekism were integrity, being objective and data driven...
  • What do they use those chips for? Microwaves and stuff? Toaster ovens?
  • Wanted (Score:5, Interesting)

    by swordboy ( 472941 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:19PM (#7884470) Journal
    I've always ranted here about how we could use an industry standard chassis and AC/DC power spec for mini-ITX. If LCD monitor vendors could simply stick their panels into an open spec laptop chassis, we'd have oodles of cheap, interchangable laptops out there. And they wouldn't cost $900 to fix when you spill your free beer on them...
    • Re:Wanted (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      the morex cases already use 12VDC power for the ITX boards. just slap a small radioshack style portable UPS and LCD on them and youre good to go. the only problem is getting a light LCD panel to stick on them.
    • Wait, was that free as in beer, or, oh, nevermind...

      Damn RMS

  • by pummer ( 637413 ) <spam@@@pumm...org> on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:20PM (#7884478) Homepage Journal
    http://www.mini-itx.com/projects/gingerbreadvillag e/
  • Hooray! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Hannes Eriksson ( 39021 ) <<es.umu.cca> <ta> <sennah>> on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:21PM (#7884487)
    No I can finally have a Gigaherz processor in my fax machine :-)
    • Re:Hooray! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by tomstdenis ( 446163 )
      You make that sound funny [and it sorta is] but think about this. If fax machines start having say >500MIPs [or whatever the 5900 offers] then we can put better compression algos in there and more flexible protocols, etc...

  • how about (Score:2, Interesting)

    by didiken ( 93521 )
    robots ?
  • Transmeta rocks. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Qbertino ( 265505 ) <moiraNO@SPAMmodparlor.com> on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:24PM (#7884532)
    Say what you want, but these people have found a niche and deserve credit.
    Their CPUs are sufficient for most tasks and not seldom run three to four times as long as comparable CPUs with the same amount of power. They are the equivalent to the 'kaizend' motors in the late generation portable cassette players ('walkmen'), seriously optimized for a specific goal: to consume as much minimum power as possible.
    My friend has a Fujitsu Lifebook P with a 900 Mhz transmeta and it runs 16 hrs of the grid! And he even watches DVDs with it. Try that with a Pentium Mobile.
    • his notebook battery life has more do with the whole design then just the cpu. With most modern notebooks, the power difference between a pentium-m and a transmeta, compared to what the rest of the notebook items use for power (screen, hard drive, etc), is minimal. A pentium-m might use a watt or two more in power, but thats nothing when the screen eats up (i am making these numbers up, but they should be in the ball park) 20 or 30 watts, 5 to 10 for the hard drive, 10-20 for mother board, etc.
      • Re:Transmeta rocks. (Score:5, Informative)

        by imsabbel ( 611519 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:55PM (#7884854)
        Dont underestimate the power requirements of the Pentium M.
        Yes, its a lot friendlier than all other "big" cpus, but if you use a lot of cpu-power, it still needs >25Watt. Thats a lot more than the whole rest of the system (ok, not if you are dvd-burning while using your mobile geforece 5700 to play doom3 on your 17" widescreen high brighness lcd, but you get the point...)
        Of course most of the time you dont need full-power, but still when idling it uses 5-7 Watt, more than the Transmeta with 100% load.

        The only problem is that the transmetas have limited performance. While pentium M can deliver in peak situation (but with a lot of power), the transmeta cannot.

        And your numbers are from soviet russia, arent they? (IAW: bullshit)

        10-20W would be a normal desktop board. 3-8 watt for normal Laptop(with ram, but without fance gfx).
        10 Watt for a hd is normal for a 10000rpm 3.5" disc. A 2.5" laptop disc is more likely to use 1.5-3 Watt, if its running at all.
        And 20-30 Watt would be a bad 15" or a very good 17" Lcd monitor with 200+ cd/m^2. For a 15" high brightness destop replacement Notebook, 15 Watt, perhaps 20 watt with max brightness.
        But your "long running" subnotebook with 10.4" 75cd/m^2 screen wont use much more than 5-7 Watt.
    • Does your friend run Linux on it? If so what distro(s) and how well does it work. What is the performance like? Those lifebooks look really nice, especially with the transmeta chips...
      • Re:Transmeta rocks. (Score:3, Informative)

        by mocm ( 141920 )
        I am running Debian on my Fujitsu Loox T93C (Japanese model). AFAIK that is the same as the P2120 in the US.
        It is very nice. It has built in Wifi that works with Linux and not to forget the DVD/CD-R/RW which comes in handy for watching DVDs and burning CD-R/RWs. I added a prism54 based pcmcia wlan card so that I can watch the DVDs from my server.
        Find out more about Linux on the Lifebook here [greenfly.org] and here [leog.net].
        I am using it right now to write this comment, sitting in my chair watching TV.
    • Re:Transmeta rocks. (Score:2, Informative)

      by JPelorat ( 5320 )
      "as much minimum power as possible"

      The point is made, but the syntax would be "as little power as possible" or even just "minimum possible amount of power".

      "not seldom run"

      Often run? Again, makes sense, but a bit stiff.

      (this is meant as an educational insight, not a slam - I hope you'd do the same for me if I ever posted something in German)
  • Yes, but what for? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sebastopol ( 189276 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:26PM (#7884547) Homepage
    Has transmeta found a real design win yet? Something over 1m units is considered REAL. They've been issuing press releases since they started, and i have yet to see any success. i guess loads of venture capital are keeping them afloat, b/c their SECC filings show pathetic revenue.
  • Game performance? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Dark Paladin ( 116525 ) * <<jhummel> <at> <johnhummel.net>> on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:28PM (#7884580) Homepage
    Granted, I haven't checked out the market for a bit, since I've pretty much gone "console only", and the only PC games I play anymore I just wait until they hit "OS X" - or do without. (Not that I don't have an oversized old games library as it is - I don't need to buy anymore....)

    But I have friends who do LAN parties, and I've wondered about getting a Shuttle kind of machine, or preferably something the size of a Cappachino computer. Small, slip it into a backpack, show up with just that and a flat screen (keyboard, mouse, etc) - but it would be a small machine just for PC LAN gaming. It wouldn't need a huge video card - anything that can run most games published 2003 at 800x600 would be fine.

    I wonder if these Transmeta chips could be used this way.
    • A half-decent (or better) laptop works great for those non-die-hard gaming purposes. My guess is that it would be cheaper, about as powerhungry (stationary TFTs, optical mice and big speakers/headphones use electricity too), and faster than a portable desktop powered by a transmeta 5900.
    • go with the shuttle SN85G - it's an AMD64 based machine. Pop the 3000+ in and a decent vid card like a ATI Readeon 9600XT and you have a "wicked" good gaming machine.
  • Huh?? (Score:5, Funny)

    by ianashley ( 597497 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:29PM (#7884591) Homepage
    "They're 50% smaller than the 5800, intended for low-power, low-heat, high-speed applications.." Are there actually people out there demanding large high-power, high-heat, low-speed chips?
    • The electric company?

      Actually my dorm room is usually noticably warmer than my common room because of the 4 computers I have inside.
      • Are you surprised? (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Kombat ( 93720 )
        Actually my dorm room is usually noticably warmer than my common room because of the 4 computers I have inside.

        Of course it is! You're running what are essentially 4 250- to 300-watt heaters in a small room. One computer would produce a noticable (heck, downright significant) increase in heat.

        And by the way, while a lot of the heat coming from your PC is in fact from the computationally intensive components (CPU, RAM, video card), there is also a large amount of it coming from your power supply. There
        • Do you understand the concept of a switching power supply?

          You're running what are essentially 4 250- to 300-watt heaters in a small room

          A switching power supply responds to loads. It will not provide its maximum rated power unless you load it that heavily.

          Your typical PC ( PS, motherboard, processor, ram, video, a card or two, and a couple drives ) these days actually uses ~100w while idiling, and around 150w under extreme load. This would include losses due to power supply inefficiency.

          • Your typical PC ( PS, motherboard, processor, ram, video, a card or two, and a couple drives ) these days actually uses ~100w while idiling, and around 150w under extreme load. This would include losses due to power supply inefficiency.

            Then why is it that AMD requires a 300 watt psu for their athlon XPs?

            and yeah, I tried to run my system of a 90watt psu once, didnt happen. Maybe more like 150 idle, 400 while burning a cd, watching a dvd, doing a defrag, and playing a quake 3 timedemo.
    • Re:Huh?? (Score:3, Informative)

      by Carnildo ( 712617 )
      They're differentiating themselves from the "high-power, high-heat, high-speed" and "low-power, low-heat, low-speed" chips.
    • you mean Intel Itaniums?
    • You mean like the Itanium? ;-)

    • low-power

      Pick two.

    • There are people out there who are willing to let various of these slip in favor of cost. Your microwave could easily contain a high-power, high-hear, low-speed, cheap chip, and you wouldn't care. There are relatively few applications where you're going to be doing a lot of processor work, can't burn much power, and are willing to pay to get this.
    • Are there actually people out there demanding large high-power, high-heat, low-speed chips?

      Yeah? The P4 and gamers come to mind. :)
    • Well, at least high-power, high-heat, high-speed. Have you ever seen a computer magazine publishing a serious article about 'efficient computers' or even 'portable, energy-saving laptops'? I haven't. Even when it comes to laptops, all you see is Tom's-Hardware-style performance benchmarks, CPU performance, graphics performance, etc. This really pisses me off. Only gamers (and a few others) really need that much performance, in my opinion. Most Joe Average users are just caught by ads and 'reviews' of high-p

  • "Little...yellow...different."
  • by ResQuad ( 243184 )
    I am really lookin into getting myself a mini-itx board for my file server. This would be really nice to have, a nice speedy transmeta chip running the show.

  • by ArmedLemming ( 18042 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:41PM (#7884705)
    From the article:

    "The Crusoe TM5700/TM5900 processors are another significant step in advancing the cause of efficient computing," said Dr. Matthew R. Perry, president and CEO of Transmeta. "By delivering a solution that is 50 percent smaller than our existing Crusoe TM5800 processors, Transmeta allows system designers to further leverage the high performance and low-heat dissipation characteristics of Transmeta's proven hardware and software architecture for a wide range of new smaller form factor, fan-less designs."

    Important tidbit not in the article, but needed to be:

    Dr. Perry then proceeded to explain the seemingly confusing numbering scheme, "Well, since we had cut down the form factor some of thought we should also cut the model number down. But, we didn't want to alienate those who are used to seeing newer products with higher model numbers, so we compromised and named it higher and lower than its predecessor."

  • by -tji ( 139690 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:44PM (#7884750) Journal
    So, how do these Transmeta chips compare to the VIA C3's, in terms of computing performance, and power/heat requirements?

    VIA has been doing a very nice job with the C3, with several varieties, speeds, and sizes to be used in all sorts of commercial or hobbyist applications. They have a new mini-itx board, with dual ethernet ports for network gateway usage. And, their new C3 processor includes hardware AES support, with incredible performance for network or filesystem encryption.

    It would be great to have an alternative. The TM chips seem to have some really interesting features. But, I have not seen any of these boards/chips available retail. They seem to be essentially OEM solutions for embedded devices. This positioning puts them head to head with many excellent non-x86 solutions, like the ARM, PowerPC, and Hitachi SH processors.
    • VIA is still a bitch when it comes to Linux support, although that has little to do with the CPU (C3) as much as with the rest of the system.

      It doesn't matter much if you are just using it as a gateway I suppose, but if you care about CPU power I would have to assume using it as a desktop was at least mildly important, in which case VIA is far from friendly.

      • I haven't been happy with the VIA Athlon chipset, but I've had nothing but good luck with the VIA mini-ITX systems. I loaded Mandrake 9.1 onto a 800Mhz C3 mini-ITX system and everything on it just worked right out of the box. Everything. It wasn't a speed demon tio be sure, but it worked.
        • by Anonymous Coward
          The problem with the C3 is that it doesn't support the cmov instruction. Doesn't sound like a big deal but it can be. Most applications that are compiled with gcc and optimized for a pIII (IIRC) or higher in intel land require the use of the cmov instruction.

          There is a kernel patch out there that emulates the cmov instruction on the C3 in kernel land.

          I had specifics requirements for running vmware and matlab on my C3 mini-itx board (other than lacking the cmov instruction it was great). I applied the k
    • So, how do these Transmeta chips compare to the VIA C3's, in terms of computing performance, and power/heat requirements

      More interestingly, how does it compare to their new C5I/Esther processor expected out in Q1/04? The Esther core is 90nm, is supposed to run at 2GHz, 5W max or something, with 70x the RNG speed of the Nehemiah core, and integrated SHA hashing in addition to AES. Yay for SSL with 2% processor load!

      After all, if we're looking at future chips...
      • by -tji ( 139690 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @09:01PM (#7886616) Journal
        Good point... The new generation of VIA processors continue to create interesting possibilities.

        This article [extremetech.com] has some information on upcoming VIA processors/boards. A new processor package that is about the size of a penny, and the nano-ITX board for ultra small devices looks really cool.

        But, the thing I want in that article is the proto Dual Processor C5P motherboard [ziffdavisinternet.com], with dual ethernets and a DVI display output. That would make a great little linux server and/or gateway box.
  • Transmeta in Laptops (Score:5, Informative)

    by happyfrogcow ( 708359 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:49PM (#7884796)
    For those of you wondering where Transmeta can be found (like I was), Here's a list of laptops [transmeta.com]

    I'd love something with 12hours battery life, regardless of processing speed (granted, anything less than comparable to a 350Mhz x86 would be a bit slow) so I can go outside to code, or to a cafe without having to sit next to a power outlet.

    • by aliens ( 90441 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @06:16PM (#7885096) Homepage Journal
      I never understood coding outside. The sun makes it hard to see a screen, so you'd have to find a perfect shady spot, then you'd have to go and find a table and chair comfortable enough to not get sore from coding for several hours.

      Just leave work at work and enjoy doing outside things outside.

    • I have a dell inspiron 366 MHz PII with the dual battery packs. It weighs over 10 pounds, and it has 155 WHr [bay-wolf.com] of capacity total. The battery lasts eight hours.

      I love to code at coffeeshops, and in fact, took a year's sabbatical where I did most of my coding in coffeeshops. In the four years of owning this computer (it shipped with win98), only once did I ever run down the batteries. Eight hours of coding and I was pretty beat - six hours of creative thought was all I was good for at a time. I hope you can s
    • For those of you wondering where Transmeta can be found (like I was), Here's a list of laptops

      I thought it was interesting to note that most of the models of laptop linked to there are Japanese models. It seems the Japanese have embraced Transmeta, while the US is still "Intel inside" obsessed.

  • Slightly off topic, but is that squiggle the transmeta logo? Their site looks very much the same colour, but I don't see the logo itself there...

    My first though on seeing it was "Who made debian green?"
  • by jubei ( 89485 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:54PM (#7884839)
    Until you look at the prices for a typical mini-itx case.

    I hope the mini-itx format becomes much more popular. We need more competition in the tiny case area.

    Any good sources of reasonably priced cases?
  • Anyone know if there is a Beowulf Cluster of these chips or the VIA ones? And would a cluster comnparable in performance to a P4 generate as much heat or use as much power? I'm thinking about trying this because:
    1. A Mini-ITX system is mad cheap.
    2. They're very quiet.
    3. Should be more redundant/reliable than a single processor system.

    I have 2 servers right now. One is a Mini-ITX at 900 mhz and another one is an Athlon at 1.6 Ghz. The smaller one is more preferable because I live in a dorm room. Plus i
  • A question: (Score:5, Funny)

    by falameufilho ( 563216 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @05:56PM (#7884864) Homepage
    Now that Linus does not work at Transmeta anymore, do we still like them?
  • Why haven't they gone out of business and returned the remaining money to the investors yet?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    link (has pictures too): http://www.kurnspatrick.com/sharpmm2.htm

    Ubiq Computing from Akiba Hotline wrote a review on the Sharp PC-MM2-5NE a couple days ago (unfortunately in japanese ):

    http://pc.watch.impress.co.jp/docs/2003/1209/ho t re v237.htm

    (use a translator service e.g. world.altavista.net or any others)

    Some notes from the review:

    They used a PowerPoint 2002 file at 4.02MB and timed opening times

    Model 1st time 2nd time 3rd time

    Efficeon 28.04 18.95 18.78
  • by 3Suns ( 250606 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @06:37PM (#7885313) Homepage
    I'd like to see a desktop system built with maybe 8 of these running in SMP. You'd probably have about the same raw computing power as a high-end Intel or AMD dual-processor machine, and probably less power consumption. Where you'd really win is with usability and interactivity - a good SMP OS would handle multitasking properly among the CPUs. Your web browser would never interrupt your mp3 player again, and the UI would be unhindered by background processes. This may especially be the case with the on-die memory controllers.

    The only problem being the fact that they could never sell it... only high-end server versions of Windows support high numbers of SMP CPUs. Obviously this isn't a problem for Linux users.
    • a good SMP OS would handle multitasking properly among the CPUs. Your web browser would never interrupt your mp3 player again, and the UI would be unhindered by background processes.

      Be careful what you say, or someone who's never used an SMP system will come along and tell you you're wrong. At least that's usually what happens when I tell people about my SMP desktops!

    • RLX made Transmeta blade servers in 2002 - I don't know if they've updated them for the new Efficeon chips this year or not. It was a really good choice for the blade-server market, because the theoretical advantages of high-density low-floor-space machines often lose out to the power and air-conditioning needs if you pack too many space-heater CPUs in a box.

      Of course, if what you really want is a quiet desktop, there's a lot to be said for running a single-processor quiet X-Windows screen on your deskto

    • Hmm, interesting. Someone should really do this. Make it a 2- or 4-processor Efficeon PC (8 would be a bit too many IMO) with accompanying energy-saving hardware around it, put it in a compact box, equip it with a well pre-configured Linux, and it might actually sell pretty well (OK, only among geeks, with Linux not being mass-market ready...). That would be one nice box. Low power consumption, proper performance, no fan noise while Transmeta's Thermal Extensions are active... I might buy something like tha
  • by Stevyn ( 691306 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @06:44PM (#7885386)
    I remember when they first came out with their crusoe chips they were marketting them as viable alternatives to pentiums and k6's (or a k6 variant). The problem was that their performance loss couldn't justify the battery life increase and so few manufacturers took the risk to built laptops with them or market them as heavily as their pentium laptops.

    I'm surprised transmeta lasted this long and so I guess that's an indicator that they weren't dot com vaporware. However, I hope to see this time they try to market them not as laptop replacements but just really fast chips for embeded applications or portable devices. Battery life is a very big consideration in designing mp3 players, cell phones, cameras, etc. What this may bring soon is smaller devices that rely on less chips since they can take advantage of transmetas more powerful chip than what it's replacing. If not, it could simply allow more features in handhelds that already exist instead of trying to invent new markets (tablet's to some extent).
  • Most of the of the coolest subnotebooks (such as at Dynamism [dynamism.com]) seem to use the low power, low heat Transmeta processors, and have been kind of stuck at a threshold of speeds for the longest time.

    I welcome a new generation of Transmeta CPU's, to hopefully bring sub-notebook power forward a leap.

  • by NerveGas ( 168686 ) on Monday January 05, 2004 @06:50PM (#7885454)
    In 1998, some engineers at Corel took 10 StrongARMs and connected them on a custom backplane, made a couple of modifications to Apache, and were able to dish out close to one million web pages per minute.

    I'd love to see someone put 8 of these on a board with a gig of memory, and two ethernet jacks. One would go to the network, the other would go to your file server/SAN/NAS/other_buzzword.

    Put 2 gigs of memory on it for disk caching, and for a pretty low amount of money and electrical power, you could dish out VERY large numbers of web pages.

    Shoot, take it farther: Have another unit based on them that runs LVS as a load-balancer, and put several of the servers behind it. All of the sudden, for $2000, you'd have the capability to dish out a billion web pages per day (or more), with load-balancing and realtime failover to boot!

    • For two grand? How much do transmeta's chips cost? I thought they were expensive.

      Also, with it serving a million a minute, a billion a day isn't very hard...

      • I thought that one of Transmeta's selling points was the the chips were relatively inexpensive, compared to the AMD/Intel chips, but I could be wrong. The chips probably use much less power mostly because they likely have far fewer transistors than a P4, Athlon, or Opteron. It still may be more than $2,000, but it would still likely be MUCH cheaper (say, an order of magnitude) than trying to do it by building a bunch of Intel/AMD machines. (more below)

        I mentioned a billion-page per day number simpl
    • I don't know if the prices or the benchmarks meet your requirements, but see this:

      http://www.rlx.com/product/ [rlx.com]

      24 servers in a 3U chassis, or 6 in a 1U chassis.

  • For a while I've wanted to use a crusoe chip in various little embedded devices, simply because they're so easy to run fanless. And I know there are companies that make small form factor (5.25" or smaller) boards like these. Problem is, they're impossible to order unless you're getting them in huge quantities. These things could be a hobbiest's dream, much better (lower heat, smaller) than the mini-itx C3 boards a lot of people are using, you just can't find them. I've only found one place that sells th
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 05, 2004 @07:39PM (#7885948)
    I know that the idea of a chip which runs java natively has been bandied around already, but I've always wondered why Transmeta hasn't released other architectures under their code morphing software, specifically java. All the arguments I've heard against a java machine have been due to the fact that java is more than just a series of byte codes, it's also an api. It seems to me that a combination of a crusoe chip, the right code morphing software, and the equivalent of JNode [sourceforge.net] as an OS would allow for some fast and efficient java machines. Is this possible?
  • First, Ditzel wanted to do a fast VLIW--the great wide hope--faster than Intel. It didn't quite work out but someone at Transmeta lucked into the low power idea. Great idea. It took awhile but with enough perserverance and capital they made it work.

    But at the end of the day, they get to compete with Intel. This is sort of like winning a bunch of thumb-wrestling contests and, as first prize, getting to go a few rounds with Mike Tyson. Intel doesn't play nice, has a multiple ear appetite, *deep* pocket

"Let every man teach his son, teach his daughter, that labor is honorable." -- Robert G. Ingersoll