SAQ wrote:Yep, SGI is no longer "cool", so the penguinheads don't want to have anything to do with it.
Oh I think there's probably more than a few who'd think it's cool - and that probably includes at least a few that are regulars here. I think it more likely that the idea has faded because it became obvious sometime ago that SGI couldn't or wouldn't release the necessary documentation to support development on later generation hardware.
It just seems that the Linux community is quite willing to drop stuff and rush off after the latest "neat thing". Try to find a recent distro for Alpha or SPARC32 (both of which do have docs available courtesy of the respective companies, though SPARC32 is, um, a bit "convoluted"), and what's with the "we can't decide on a main C library" deal? Yes, there are some neat ideas coming out of Linux, and they do have some of the top filesystems in FOSSland, but they're frustrating to keep up with and I firmly believe that stability suffers. NetBSD's a little slower and more methodical, but they still have VAX - that's commitment.
SGI just couldn't be bothered to release tech docs for Origin3-derived machines. Altix support is out there, so probably all that is needed is BEDROCK and ODYSSEY info, neither of which are likely to be of value to any current competitors - but it would take time and money to locate, sanitize and release the docs, and there is about nil chance of any ROI. Personally, I wouldn't run Linux on SGIMIPS anyway - Linux does just fine on PCs, so all you'd get from the IRIS is a reduced software library and porting hassles. IRIX gives you some neat (though very outdated) features. In basic poking around it seems that the IRIX setup for doing multimedia would have been a much nicer, lighter-weight way to go than the hodgepodge of easily-broken setups that Linux uses (PulseAudio, aRts, ESD, ...)