FPS-100 array processor

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Arie van Schutterhoef
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FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Tue Jul 17, 2007 1:22 pm

Does any one have any experience with the FPS-100 array processor, like it appeared in the early 1980's? It was used for vector/FFT calculations. There are docs on the bitsavers.org site. I was wondering how it looked like and if there are pictures somewhere...

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R-ten-K
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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby R-ten-K » Tue Jul 17, 2007 1:40 pm

Basically they look like a standard VAX rack add-on, i.e. pretty much like one of those fujitsu eagle enclosures. I have seen an old pdp or vax with one of these puppies in the rack, in a previous life, it was never turned off because it was already acient... I believe they used it for vision and image processing.
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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Tue Jul 17, 2007 2:01 pm

>Basically they look like a standard VAX rack add-on, i.e. pretty much like one of >those fujitsu eagle enclosures. I have seen an old pdp or vax with one of these >puppies in the rack,
-I know that the people in the French music research centre IRCAM. Paris used it in the 1980's connected to a Vax 11/780 to do all sorts of nifty audio-processing.
At the moment I'm putting up a page at http://knorretje.hku.nl/wiki/IRCAM-hardware and thought it would be nice to have a picture to go along with it. So I'll looking for
something like that.
At the meantime I'll read the manuals first...

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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby R-ten-K » Mon Aug 13, 2007 11:32 pm

Dunno if this machine is related to the FPS100, but here is another FPS machine:

http://www.ira.cnr.it/centrocal/cedstor ... 04-fps.jpg
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Arie van Schutterhoef
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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Thu Aug 16, 2007 5:39 am

>Dunno if this machine is related to the FPS100, but here is another FPS machine:
-The specs of the FPS 100 and the FPS 5300 almost seem the same, and they originate
from the same period (start of the 80's).

Thanks for the link.

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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby R-ten-K » Thu Aug 16, 2007 1:51 pm

Actually I was going through a bunch of old magazines/memorabilia and I came across an advertishing for FPS products. I will see if I can commadeer a scanner and get it up.

I also have a bunch of SUN/SGI brochures that I never found the time to digitize... once I get some more vacation I will try to post them up.
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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby maxsleg » Fri Aug 24, 2007 7:48 am

hmmm - I am pretty sure ~ 20 years ago we had a box on a PDP-11 by Analogic that was some sort of FP co-processor..
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Arie van Schutterhoef
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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Fri Aug 31, 2007 2:52 pm

>a box on a PDP-11 by Analogic that was some sort of FP
-They produced the AP500, which is not the FPS-100. It seems that array processors were considered as 'low budget crays'. Still slightly unclear what makes the difference between an array processor and a FP, except of course floating point...

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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Fri Aug 31, 2007 2:55 pm

>advertishing for FPS products. I will see if I can commadeer a scanner >and get it up.
-Would be nice to incorporate an image of the FPS-100 in the webpage, when I've got time to work on it again.

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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby R-ten-K » Fri Aug 31, 2007 5:21 pm

Arie van Schutterhoef wrote:>a box on a PDP-11 by Analogic that was some sort of FP
-They produced the AP500, which is not the FPS-100. It seems that array processors were considered as 'low budget crays'. Still slightly unclear what makes the difference between an array processor and a FP, except of course floating point...

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The array processor was a SIMD machine, which could act like a vector machine of sorts (note Vector processors are not Array processors). FP accelerators are something different altogether.

Think of the FP add ons to the PDP as the 8087 of yore (FP was not standard until the early 90s :-) ).
Think of the Array processor as the MMX.

There were a few array machines during the 80s, most notably the Connection Machine from Thinking Machines, and MasPar. Those were mostly SIMD machines. There were a few systolic arrays also.
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Arie van Schutterhoef
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Re: FPS-100 array processor

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Sat Sep 01, 2007 6:05 am

>Vector processors are not Array processors
-I found this was a rather illuminating explanation:
http://www.stanford.edu/class/ee382/vector/ppframe.htm
on these matters...

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