[Beowulf] 10GbE Adapter Market

Lux, Jim (337C) james.p.lux at jpl.nasa.gov
Mon Nov 18 14:11:20 PST 2013

COTS is quite different than SOHO..

COTS means "I can order it from stock", although in reality, a lot of times it means "commercially available as a standard or catalog item", and it's still built to order.  But not "designed to order".

COTS is an incredibly common word in the defense/aerospace world, as in "This M1A1 Abrams tank fire control system is running the VxWorks COTS operating system on a ruggedized COTS PowerPC processor. "  As opposed to, say, a AN/UYK-20 tactical data computer which was specifically designed and manufactured for the US Navy, and runs its proprietary software.

SOHO is more about an application space.  Maybe one step up from "consumer" in terms of use cases: A PC pitched at the SOHO market would not trumpet it's game playing capabilities (DOOM at 10 fps), but would, for instance, have a faxmodem or, later, a network adapter. Why would a consumer at home need a network connection? They've got their dial-up modem to connect to Compuserve or AOL, after all. But in a "small office" environment, you might want to use a shared printer, or connect to your Novell server.

Jim Lux

-----Original Message-----
From: beowulf-bounces at beowulf.org [mailto:beowulf-bounces at beowulf.org] On Behalf Of Ellis H. Wilson III
Sent: Friday, November 15, 2013 12:00 PM
To: Peter St. John
Cc: Beowulf List
Subject: Re: [Beowulf] 10GbE Adapter Market

On 11/15/2013 02:52 PM, Peter St. John wrote:
> Well that's amusing. The link has a clever animation of someone 
> googling on my behalf, and comes up with what I assume is the correct definition:
> (from https://www.google.com/search?btnG=1&pws=0&q=define%3A+soho ) 
> "relating to a market for relatively inexpensive consumer electronics 
> used by individuals and small companies."
> That's great, but there are two funny things about the page. It 
> follows the definition with the actual google results for "soho", none 
> of which mention anything even related to the given definition. The 
> other funny thing is that the definition does not mention the acronym, 
> or strictly speaking, the etymology of the "word".

Yes it does, you just had to click the down arrow to expand information on the term.  The very next word is "Origin," which it states is English, and gives the acronym as "Small Office Home Office."  It also informs us that it was coined in the 1990s.

> So my actual bandwagon is that people should take the time to say what 
> they mean; I don't mind looking up unfamiliar words, and I had 
> (otherwise I wouldn't have known about the holotronic architecture 
> idea). And if SOHO means COTS but nobody remembers the acronym, then I 
> suggest sticking with COTS.

My preference is COTS as well, but, in all fairness, I'm rather unsure if COTS is more a commonplace term than SOHO or if I'm just acclimated to it more due to having been on the Beowulf list for so long.

Let's have google decide:

Looks like you're right.  The turning point for COTS vs SOHO was about
1995 from what I can tell.


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