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  1. Technology
February 22, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

Branford, Connecticut-based Multiflow Computer Inc has doubled the top-end performance of its Trace range of very long instruction word minsupercomputers, and also introduced a low-end system. The top-end Trace 14/200, which as the name suggests uses 512-bit instructions that can each initiate up to 14 operations – as opposed to the 256-bit, seven operation instructions of its other models – is said to offer 30MFLOPS peak performance and costs $399,500 for a base system with 32Mb memory, 1.1Gb disk, tape drive, console and Unix. Multiflow claims that the system delivers three times the performance of competitor Convex Computer’s $495,000 C-1 when compared using the Linpack benchmark, although Convex is itself close to unveiling its second generation systems. Also announced was the $197,500 Trace 7/100, offering two thirds the performance at two thirds the price of the Trace 7/200, the company’s only previously announced model. Multiflow also said it had $7m funding from Prutech Research and Development for an unspecified new product development. Multiflow bases its pitch on its compiler technology, which is said to allow applications that have either high vector or scalar code content to be transferred easily to its machines and take advantage of the systems’ parallel architecture – although one drawback is said to be the large size of the code generated. The company was nevertheless confident enough in its technology to up the price of a new version of the compiler by 80% to $45,000. The company’s machines are marketing in Europe by Olivetti.

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