In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, email@example.com (Mike Haertel) wrote:
> * LispM's were not multi-user - they could have only
> one logged-in user at a time, although they did
> provide a degree of remote access.
LispM's had a full multithreaded environment--something not seen in
personal computers until very recently. Apple is still having difficulties
with this one.
> * LispM's were not secure - the whole system, including
> the operating system kernel, ran in a single giant
> address space.
A better way of saying this is that LispM's are much _more_ secure, because
every item has its hardware datatype which is religiously checked on every
access. LispM's weren't the machines crashing when those internet worm
attacks were going on!
> The LispM's also cost too much--especially for single-user machines!
The first two items aren't problems on PC's, so we can only conclude that
the third item--the cost--is the real problem here. If Symbolics had achieved
their Lisp chip in the initially promised time frame--approximately 1985--
instead of 1988-9, the whole character of the argument would have changed.
Apple would have gone after the low end of the wimp market, and the Lisp
Machines would have captured the space currently occupied by low-end SGI
machines. Even though it ran on a much slower processor, the Symbolics graphics
software was miles ahead of anything else in the late 1980's, and so it still
managed to compete for a while with its slow hardware.