[Beowulf] The Mind Behind the Nascom-1

Lawrence Stewart stewart at serissa.com
Wed Aug 21 11:09:40 PDT 2013

On Aug 21, 2013, at 12:57 PM, John Hearns <hearnsj at googlemail.com> wrote:

> (*) ps.whatever happened to my 'first love' - emitter coupled logic?
> I spent many happy hours as a graduate student (**) in learning about FASTBUS for (at the time)
> blazingly fast DAQ - because ECL goes faster.
> I guess no-one can fight City Hall (or commodity chips)

One of the little-remembered facts about the Digital Alpha EV-3 and EV-4 chips (1991 ish) is that they 
could be run with either CMOS or ECL external signaling through an unusual floating well pad design.

The first system built around the chip (the "Alpha Demonstration Unit") was built out of ECL 100K. 
What beautiful smooth high speed waveforms compared with the usual TTL and CMOS glitchy junk signals!
Of course there were the power supplies running 200 Amps at -4.5 volts...


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