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Technology / AI and automation


Gould Computer Systems Inc duly unveiled the first offerings in its new N Processor Line, NPL, of 32-bit minisupercomputers yesterday with the launch of the NP-1, offered in configurations of from one to eight processors. Contrary to expectations (CI No 643), the machines are offered in single as well as multiprocessor configurations, the base model being the NP-1 Model 110, fitted with a hefty 64Mb of memory, expandable to 512Mb, and a base processor price of UKP310,000 with 64Mb – US prices are put at $395,000 to UKP2.9m. The single processor is rated at 10 MIPS on the Whetstone benchmark, and can be expanded with additional CPUs to a maximum of eight, creating a Model 480, which has up to 4Gb of physical memory and is rated at 96 MIPS and 320 Mflops. The machines run Gould’s proprietary MPX/32 operating system and its UTX/32 Berkeley-based Unix with real-time and System V extensions. Multiprocessor configurations can optionally be tied together via a new UKP43,000 real-time Hub that enables each node to communicate with the others via shared memory regions, with common address ranges set aside for shared functions. Each NP-1 processor operates as a master with its own copy of the operating system, and in theory each processor in an eight processor array could be running a different operating system. UK deliveries start September.

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