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Midget CPUs for x86 PDAs?

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  • CPUs
  • x86
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October 15, 2003 1:36:51 PM

VIA and Transmeta just both announced new super-small x86 CPUs. VIA boringly follows their new tradition calling theirs a VIA Eden-N (I'm guessing N is for nano) and it can run on a VIA Nano-ITX mobo. The mobo is only a 4 3/4" (120mm) square, which is pretty small to say the least.

Transmeta's much more cool sounding Efficeon (yay for marteting teams inventing funky names like that) is x86 compatible (like all Transmeta CPUs it's a weird architecture, but this one sounds really cool). It can fit into nVidia's nForce3 Go120 which is only 3.3"(84mm) x 6.1" (155mm) for a more traditional oblong shape with less surface area than VIA's little mobo. And yes, that's right, nForce3. Why is that possible? Because the Efficeon has an on-die memory controller just like the A64 does, so nForce3 works with Efficeon too. Funky!

But the really cool thing is that these little low-power low-heat chips with their tiny new mobos are both x86 compatible!!!

Imagine loading up a PDA with an <i>actual</i> version of WinXP and run real life every day software instead of special PDA versions. It could be no larger than any hard drive based MP3 player. (Or even smaller if you wanted to use more expensive storage solutions.) Sweet!

It'll be no gaming king, but still, it's about time. And I think the best part is that once again there is nothing that VIA can do that someone else can't do the same or better. ROFL @ VIA :p 

So what do you folks think? Are these super-low-power processors and micro mobos something that excites you too?

Imagine, your next super-cool portable gaming device might not be a Game Boy Advance. It might be a fully-fledged miniature PC capable of running classic old games like Quake1 or Half Life! I dunno. I'm impressed. I'd <i>love</i> to see some good heat, power, and performance benchmarks.

<pre><A HREF="http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20030905" target="_new"><font color=black>People don't understand how hard being a dark god can be. - Hastur</font color=black></A></pre><p>

More about : midget cpus x86 pdas

October 15, 2003 1:44:39 PM

A step in the right direction.

<font color=blue>
<i><font color=black>Faithless</font color=black></i> is he that says farewell when the road darkens.
J. R. R. Tolkien
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October 15, 2003 3:12:22 PM

being able to play half-life on the bus would be supa-sweet..
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but trying to balance a keyboard/mouse combo on your knees would not :lol:  .. as I would <i>hate</i> playing it with a horrible little joystick :eek: 

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<font color=red>The preceding text is assembled from information stored in an unreliable organic storage medium. As such it may be innacurate, incomplete, or completely wrong</font color=red> :wink:
October 15, 2003 3:34:05 PM

Quote:
I would hate playing it with a horrible little joystick

You have a point. There would be a bit of a problem with a good solution for a user interface. As it was that little stick thing just didn't cut it for me with my PDA. :(  I had to get a thumb keyboard. So a PDA that was actually a full PC would definately need some uber-smart interface designing.

<pre><A HREF="http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20030905" target="_new"><font color=black>People don't understand how hard being a dark god can be. - Hastur</font color=black></A></pre><p>
October 15, 2003 3:43:06 PM

it needs a direct neural link of some sort I reckon... :smile:

Although there's no way in hell I'm plugging anything made by VIA into <i>my</i> brain.. I'd start walking backwards and falling over for no good reason... :eek: 

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<font color=red>The preceding text is assembled from information stored in an unreliable organic storage medium. As such it may be innacurate, incomplete, or completely wrong</font color=red> :wink:
October 15, 2003 3:54:00 PM

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it needs a direct neural link of some sort I reckon...

I'd sell 3/4 of my soul for that!

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Although there's no way in hell I'm plugging anything made by VIA into my brain.. I'd start walking backwards and falling over for no good reason...

**ROFL** Too true. At least there's a Transmeta + nVidia solution that will probably kick the pants off of VIA's.

<pre><A HREF="http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20030905" target="_new"><font color=black>People don't understand how hard being a dark god can be. - Hastur</font color=black></A></pre><p>
October 15, 2003 4:11:28 PM

Actually.. someone was telling me about some experiment they'd read about (could be BS of course) :eek:  where they trained a monkey to do something involving moving a joystick (can't remember what exactly), and hooked up a computer to monitor & record brain activity while it was doing this stuff... after a while they disconnected the joystick, and the whole thing was then running from the computer's interperetations of the monkey brainwaves (althought the monkey was still moving the joystick).
Apparently, after a while the monkey figured out that the joystick wasn't actually doing anything, so stopped moving the joystick, but carried on doing the task without physically moving his arms.. :eek: 

so there ya go! neural interfaces are just around the corner... probably all BS though.

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<font color=red>The preceding text is assembled from information stored in an unreliable organic storage medium. As such it may be innacurate, incomplete, or completely wrong</font color=red> :wink:
October 15, 2003 4:24:57 PM

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so there ya go! neural interfaces are just around the corner... probably all BS though.

I'm not sure if I'd give credit to that story or not. I'd definately need proof. **ROFL**

But I definately believe that DNI will be possible one day. It's just a matter of time. The brain is a remarkable machine when it comes to adaptation and there's no reason why electrical devices could not be woven into the electro-chemical nervous system of the human body.

If we can put a microchip camera into an artificial eye and attach that to the optical nerve in place of our natural retina then it's just a simple matter of time before we go much further than that. And if I recall that's already an experiment being attempted.

As a wacko conspiracy theorist supporter I'd dare say that somewhere someone already has gone much further than that.

DNI is just the last stop on that railway. Once you tap into the brain directly with a completely foreign device from the natural human body then there's no where else to go. It's just a matter of newer and more interesting devices then and just how many you want to jack in to the test subject. :o 

<pre><A HREF="http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20030905" target="_new"><font color=black>People don't understand how hard being a dark god can be. - Hastur</font color=black></A></pre><p>
October 15, 2003 4:47:18 PM

I'm probably going to have nightmares tonight, about massive multi-limbed warrior constructs, with nothing but a disembodied brain controlling them, destroying all in their path.... :eek: 

:lol: 

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<font color=red>The preceding text is assembled from information stored in an unreliable organic storage medium. As such it may be innacurate, incomplete, or completely wrong</font color=red> :wink:
October 15, 2003 4:51:16 PM

Yay for cyber-psychosis! :) 

If you're already going to have nightmares tonight then don't go renting the RoboCop trilogy. And definately don't be drinking while you watch that RoboCop marathon! :o 

<pre><A HREF="http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20030905" target="_new"><font color=black>People don't understand how hard being a dark god can be. - Hastur</font color=black></A></pre><p>
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