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Poll : What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Chipset
Software
Both
Pancakes
 
PosterThread
kolla 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 9:50:21
#101 ]
Super Member
Joined: 20-Aug-2003
Posts: 1911
From: Trondheim, Norway

@Srtest

I didn’t struggle with obsession in 1992 - at that time I was busy using money on skiing, archery and music, and didn’t even own a computer or care much about them. It wasn’t until I was a student and *needed* one that I bought one - and contrary to the claims here, an A1200 with an FPU+RAM expansion, was the cheapest and most bang for buck thing available. PCs were slow, needed dedicated monitor, and most of all - super expensive! I really had no preferences one way or the other at the time, and just bought what I could afford. This was January 1994.

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OneTimer1 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 15:58:41
#102 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 3-Aug-2015
Posts: 716
From: Unknown

@thread

Strange how the topic of this thread changed to price / performance factor.

Well the Amigas sold well as long as the customers could life with their limitations.

An A1200 was cheaper than any PC, this may have changed for the A1200 HD that was still cheaper but also slower than a 386 PC. With accelerator cards you could reach the speed of a PC but nearly lose the price advantage.

One of the last advantages and downfalls of the Amigas was the absence of a VGA GFX, at one side you could still use a cheap TV-Set as monitor on the other you couldn't really use a resolution above PAL/NTSC upgrading to something better was nearly impossible for A1200 users.

A1200 with a 3,5" HD could have been 50 dollars cheaper than with it's notebook grade 2,5" HD, but would had made it even more difficult for C= fitting it inside the tiny keyboard case.

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ppcamiga1 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 17:52:42
#103 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 23-Aug-2015
Posts: 407
From: Unknown

In september 1996 I switch to pc.
I sell Amiga 1200 because switch to Pentium cost as much as upgrading my Amiga to 68030 50 MHz.
For the same money I get pc with cpu six times faster than 68030 50 MHz
and two hundred times faster graphics than amiga blitter.
Comparing my Amiga (one) to Amiga with 68030 it clear that Amiga (one) is better.
It is few times slower than pc but has decent graphics.
Amiga after 1992 was nice alternative with good os but it was not cheap and not fast.
Especially I don't care about chipset.
Amiga blitter was good when designed in 1983 but has laughable performance ten years later.
It was not good enough even in ECS times.

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Srtest 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 17:56:13
#104 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 15-Nov-2016
Posts: 258
From: Israel, Haderah

@OneTimer1

It's changed because of a constant theme called moving of the goal post: If you go with original chipset then you're an out of date nostalgia user. If you move a little bit passed that then either you provide a pc and console beater of you're just not genuine. Because evidently being genuine is having this stupid school yard mentality. Something I for one never cared about. It was a personal experience, not a social one. This wasn't some thwarting of an Iphone to hang with the cool kids. Computers weren't cool back then. Peeps here act like the original Amiga won because it presented its time period's version of the holo-deck. When in fact, it was quite different from even the basic approach of having the very best hardware. It was always some sort of compromise but one which left the big studios in the dust since it was available to create with your own hardware, software and time.

Last edited by Srtest on 14-Nov-2021 at 06:42 PM.

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BigD 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 19:18:24
#105 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 11-Aug-2005
Posts: 6044
From: UK

@ppcamiga1

Quote:
In september 1996 I switch to pc.
I sell Amiga 1200 because switch to Pentium cost as much as upgrading my Amiga to 68030 50 MHz.
For the same money I get pc with cpu six times faster than 68030 50 MHz


Good for you! Such a shame that for the money you paid the user experience and creative apps available to you on the PeeCee we're so much worse. I guess you saw that was the way the industry was moving and you got on the PC bandwagon like most people. At least you got to play Command & Conquer!

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Srtest 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 20:47:34
#106 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 15-Nov-2016
Posts: 258
From: Israel, Haderah

@BigD

You know the first time I played Dune 2 was on a pc at school. So maybe some didn't have such an easy access to all things Amiga, as obscure as you could have only found at a scarcity pretty much everywhere but the main retail stores in few countries.

Last edited by Srtest on 14-Nov-2021 at 08:49 PM.
Last edited by Srtest on 14-Nov-2021 at 08:48 PM.

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OneTimer1 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 22:28:03
#107 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 3-Aug-2015
Posts: 716
From: Unknown

Quote:

Srtest wrote:
@OneTimer1

It's changed because of a constant theme called moving of the goal post: If you go with original chipset then you're an out of date nostalgia user. If you move a little bit passed that then either you provide a pc and console beater of you're just not genuine.


Absolutely true, but I think the question asked on the beginning of the thread was asked about a computer discontinued around 1996.

If you want to bring it back you should not ask for outdated chipset or CPU, first you need the brand name AMIGA, an affordable hardware, to glue the stickers on.

Maybe we (or who ever want to do it) should ditch the OS for something with SMP, memory protection and all the drivers for modern hardware.

The CUSA Amiga might has been nearer to a modern Amiga than a VAMPIRE V4 STANDALONE or a X5000.

Last edited by OneTimer1 on 14-Nov-2021 at 10:30 PM.

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BigD 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 22:47:18
#108 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 11-Aug-2005
Posts: 6044
From: UK

@OneTimer1

Quote:
The CUSA Amiga might has been nearer to a modern Amiga than a VAMPIRE V4 STANDALONE or a X5000.


Commodore USA? Are you for real? Scam company, overpriced machine with a generic PC inside = hideous idea!

The A500 Mini is the spiritual successor to that mass market slap a sticker on a box type product but at least it's cheap and actually plays Amiga games out of the box unlike CUSA's monstrosity!

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matthey 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 14-Nov-2021 23:46:27
#109 ]
Super Member
Joined: 14-Mar-2007
Posts: 1289
From: Kansas

OneTimer1 Quote:

Strange how the topic of this thread changed to price / performance factor.


In 1985, the performance of the Amiga was difficult to quantify as the co-processors and DMA the chipset provided was higher performance than that of the 68000 CPU. After 7 years without a major chipset upgrade and even with the late AGA upgrade, the chipset was no longer providing much performance boost so the performance of the CPU became a rough estimate of overall performance and along with the price could more easily be compared to the competition as performance/price. Some people in this thread are claiming the Amiga chipset was actually decreasing performance due to bottlenecks but I have made the case that it was no worse than low end competition with a similar performance/price even in 1992.

OneTimer1 Quote:

Well the Amigas sold well as long as the customers could life with their limitations.

An A1200 was cheaper than any PC, this may have changed for the A1200 HD that was still cheaper but also slower than a 386 PC. With accelerator cards you could reach the speed of a PC but nearly lose the price advantage.


The 80386 was only a little higher performance than the 68EC020 in the 1200 at the same clock speed. The 68EC020 was competitive with the 80386 but the 80386 could be clocked higher and the Amiga 1200 used a low clocked 68EC020@14MHz.

1978 8086 5-10MHz .066 DMIPS/MHz
1979 68000 4-16.67MHz .169 DMIPS/MHz
1982 80286 5-25MHz .222 DMIPS/MHz
1984 68020 12.5-33MHz .297 DMIPS/MHz
1985 80386 12-40MHz .345 DMIPS/MHz
1987 68030 16-50MHz .358 DMIPS/MHz
1989 80486 16-120MHz 1.00 DMIPS/MHz
1990 68040 25-40MHz 1.10 DMIPS/MHz
1993 PentiumP5 60-66MHz 1.69 DMIPS/MHz
1994 68060 50-60MHz >1.52 DMIPS/MHz (Motorola literature states "over 100 MIPS at 66 MHz")

Motorola numbers are from Motorola while I couldn't verify Intel numbers. Intel x86 CPUs often did have better compiler support resulting in better DMIPS results while 68k CPUs often performed better in general purpose applications than their results would indicate partially due to 16 GP registers and a flat memory model instead of 8 GP registers and segmented memory (386 added a flat memory model option). The 68k CPUs often had better DMIPS/MHz and performance/W from equivalent CPUs which are more important today for competitiveness than maximum clock rating.

The pendulum swing happened starting at the 80486 which was a big jump in CPU performance. Before that, the Amiga had a big advantage where the chipset helped move data around while IBM compatibles looked feeble in comparison. After the 80486, the CPU could push the chunky data with the brute force. The Amiga could have quickly added higher performance processors like a higher clocked 68EC030 (maybe Akiko also) to the Amiga 1200 but didn't seem to realize the differentiation between low end and obsolete choosing to throw in the towel instead. The Amiga chipset was not a major bottleneck if the CPU had enough performance even though chunky and more display bandwidth would have been helpful. Intel CPUs starting to be clocked up significantly more than Motorola CPUs was a bigger problem. Motorola had a problem with the 68040 design running too hot to clock up and for embedded use which was corrected for the cool 68060 but Macintosh already jumped ship and Amiga and Atari were primarily buying lower end CPUs.

OneTimer1 Quote:

One of the last advantages and downfalls of the Amigas was the absence of a VGA GFX, at one side you could still use a cheap TV-Set as monitor on the other you couldn't really use a resolution above PAL/NTSC upgrading to something better was nearly impossible for A1200 users.


AGA could display VGA modes but the higher refresh used more chip memory bandwidth making these modes slower. AA+ would have doubled the bandwidth to display progressive 800x600@72Hz in 256 colors although 16 bit chunky would have been limited to 640x480. SVGA also used bit planes for higher resolutions due to limited display bandwidth. The Amiga chipset was actually more programmable and flexible than (S)VGA but needed a more expensive multi-sync monitor to take advantage.

OneTimer1 Quote:

A1200 with a 3,5" HD could have been 50 dollars cheaper than with it's notebook grade 2,5" HD, but would had made it even more difficult for C= fitting it inside the tiny keyboard case.


I don't think fitting a 3.5" HD would have been a problem if the case had been designed for it to begin with. A CD-ROM option would have been a tighter fit but probably could have been accommodated if designed for it from the beginning. CBM had too many disconnected products in development in the late '80s and early '90s without a good overall goal. CBM was always about how much money they could save and didn't think as much about how much money they could save their customers which is also important to value. Do I keep coming back to performance/price?

OneTimer1 Quote:

Absolutely true, but I think the question asked on the beginning of the thread was asked about a computer discontinued around 1996.

If you want to bring it back you should not ask for outdated chipset or CPU, first you need the brand name AMIGA, an affordable hardware, to glue the stickers on.


Nobody is asking for the Amiga chipset or 68k CPUs on 1980s and 1990s silicon.

OneTimer1 Quote:

Maybe we (or who ever want to do it) should ditch the OS for something with SMP, memory protection and all the drivers for modern hardware.


Sure but the more Amiga you ditch the more Amiga users you ditch and 68k Amiga retro hardware has the best chance of mass production.

OneTimer1 Quote:

The CUSA Amiga might has been nearer to a modern Amiga than a VAMPIRE V4 STANDALONE or a X5000.


No! The Vampire V4 and other FPGA hardware is the closest to a modern Amiga. While they have a fraction of ASIC performance/price, they show that a modern 68k CPU and Amiga chipset are not only possible but desirable.

Last edited by matthey on 15-Nov-2021 at 12:57 AM.
Last edited by matthey on 15-Nov-2021 at 12:55 AM.
Last edited by matthey on 15-Nov-2021 at 12:29 AM.
Last edited by matthey on 14-Nov-2021 at 11:50 PM.

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kolla 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 15-Nov-2021 1:36:22
#110 ]
Super Member
Joined: 20-Aug-2003
Posts: 1911
From: Trondheim, Norway

@matthey

Quote:

Nobody is asking for the Amiga chipset or 68k CPUs on 1980s and 1990s silicon.


Drrrt, wrong, that’s really what a vast majority is asking for.

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matthey 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 15-Nov-2021 2:03:57
#111 ]
Super Member
Joined: 14-Mar-2007
Posts: 1289
From: Kansas

matthey Quote:

Nobody is asking for the Amiga chipset or 68k CPUs on 1980s and 1990s silicon.


kolla Quote:

Drrrt, wrong, that’s really what a vast majority is asking for.


That's not practical. Even if the original masks exist, they should be in a museum. The Amiga chipset and even 68060 fab die sizes and silicon wafer sizes are obsolete and no longer available. The same logic can be used in modern fabs but this would require a redesign. If wires are shortened to 1/10 the distance for example, electricity will be many times faster messing up timings. It is logical to provide enhancements to take advantage of the improvements in fab technology. Practically all of the chipset limitations are gone with a redesign even though the logic design would still resemble what CBM was planning for AA+. I don't understand why anyone would want ASIC Amiga chipset exact replacement chips which are inferior to an FPGA when they could be far superior. It makes all kinds of sense to integrate the chips and even CPU into one SoC chip for a performance increase, board size reduction and cost reduction too.

Last edited by matthey on 15-Nov-2021 at 07:23 AM.

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ppcamiga1 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 15-Nov-2021 9:55:13
#112 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 23-Aug-2015
Posts: 407
From: Unknown

Commodore never really change some parts of chipset for example blitter.
Blitter works as fast as in year 1983 when it was designed.
It was not enough even thirty years ago.
FPGA or ASIC clones never be original.
This is something that died many years ago.
Let it rest in peace. Don't touch this.
It is time to end this necrophilia.
Amiga don't need a chipset.
Enjoy and let other enjoy what was good after the chipset died.
Nice os and cpu other than pc.

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OlafS25 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 15-Nov-2021 11:38:50
#113 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 12-May-2010
Posts: 5979
From: Unknown

@kolla

I do not know if it is a "vast majority" of users... the interests are very different.

What people want is that they can somehow play the old games and demos.

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saimon69 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 19-Nov-2021 23:28:01
#114 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 7-Dec-2007
Posts: 284
From: Los Angeles, CA

@OlafS25

Unless is for spare parts i would agree with the above, but i fear the day refurbished amiga chips run out

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OldFart 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 20-Nov-2021 11:05:44
#115 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 12-Sep-2004
Posts: 2989
From: Stad; en d'r is moar ain stad en da's Stad. Makkelk zat!

@bison

When you say 'chipset', does that, in broader view, also include a video output so it can be connected to a crt-based colourtv?

It WAS the chipset that enabled the Amiga to shine, it was the OS and all the other software that MADE it do so! But that was about three-and-a-half decade ago. And technology has not been twiddling thumbs in the meantime, especially so when it comes to computer related technology.
The elegance of the technology of yore is surpassed by the brute-force state of technology of nowadays. We don't need to make programs 'lean and mean', as memory costs next to nothing and processingpower only a fart and two marbles. Relatively speaking.
In my not so very humble opinion, it's the community around the platform, that makes it interesting! Wherelse do you find this level of bickering about the common subject of interest. Not with Windows, not with Mac, nor with Linux. Just to name a few.
The chipset idea was not a bad idea, but technology did choose a different path and sold it in masses to the masses, making it dirt cheap. 'Our' approach however, is lacking the economies of scale and is therefore more steeply priced.

Windows requires patience,
Apple requires a healthy bank account,
Linux requires skills,
but nothing beats the Amiga in providing fun, lots of good, old fun!

My 2 cents,
and back in to lurkingmode.

OldFart

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fishy_fis 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 20-Nov-2021 12:13:59
#116 ]
Super Member
Joined: 29-Mar-2004
Posts: 1963
From: Australia

Neither.

Terrible, over priced, weak hardware, a point blank insane user base and sheer incompetence by anyone involved with the IP is what defines the Amiga today.

There's exceptions of course in regards to the user base. Some accept it for what it is, but then there's those that think ppc anything but archaic (ppc is to modern hardware what 68k is to ppc..... it's an absolute eon behind) and support those behind ensuring it's a laughing stock to the rest of the computing world.

Doesnt mean it cant be fun, but other than some of the hardware AROS can run on every aspect of the hobby is retro.
Anyone who thinks otherwise is deluding themselves.

Last edited by fishy_fis on 20-Nov-2021 at 12:17 PM.
Last edited by fishy_fis on 20-Nov-2021 at 12:16 PM.

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NutsAboutAmiga 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 20-Nov-2021 12:17:36
#117 ]
Elite Member
Joined: 9-Jun-2004
Posts: 11996
From: Norway

@OldFart

Just point out Amiga was not a economy console when it was made, it was best console you can get, for less then a PC, there where alternatives like Amstrad, NES and few other not worth naming around when I got my Amiga500, back then PC where wherry expensive and had CGA graphics.

if buy game console today, its not designed to be economy class system, its designed to best it can for one thing games. this where commodore lost it. they doing a economy class system for poor people instead of focusing on gaming.

Last edited by NutsAboutAmiga on 20-Nov-2021 at 02:43 PM.
Last edited by NutsAboutAmiga on 20-Nov-2021 at 12:18 PM.

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ppcamiga1 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 20-Nov-2021 15:18:52
#118 ]
Regular Member
Joined: 23-Aug-2015
Posts: 407
From: Unknown

@fishy_fis

Some pople here thinks that if they attack enough long there will be switch to x86 or arm.
Not going to happend unless aros will be as good as win/lnx/osx.
Nobody sane will waste time on aros on x86 or arm when everything may be done many times faster on win/lnx/osx.
Stop this. Start working on aros.

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matthey 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 20-Nov-2021 21:19:44
#119 ]
Super Member
Joined: 14-Mar-2007
Posts: 1289
From: Kansas

OldFart Quote:

When you say 'chipset', does that, in broader view, also include a video output so it can be connected to a crt-based colourtv?


The chipset in FPGA hardware often skips the digital to analog conversion for older 15 pin high density VGA style outputs and goes straight to digital output with HDMI or DVI. All digital is easier to do in a chipset using digital logic although the conversion to analog is still possible. Sound is also simplified with digital output and when using HDMI requires some level of combining or integration between graphics and sound. Commodity modular graphics cards shouldn't have to handle audio and audio cards shouldn't have to handle graphics output if believing in the separate chipsets is better philosophy.

OldFart Quote:

It WAS the chipset that enabled the Amiga to shine, it was the OS and all the other software that MADE it do so! But that was about three-and-a-half decade ago. And technology has not been twiddling thumbs in the meantime, especially so when it comes to computer related technology.
The elegance of the technology of yore is surpassed by the brute-force state of technology of nowadays. We don't need to make programs 'lean and mean', as memory costs next to nothing and processingpower only a fart and two marbles. Relatively speaking.


Brute force computing costs more money just as it did in the Amiga days. For low end computing, brute force is lacking to run modern bloated code and "lean and mean" is still an advantage.

OldFart Quote:

The chipset idea was not a bad idea, but technology did choose a different path and sold it in masses to the masses, making it dirt cheap. 'Our' approach however, is lacking the economies of scale and is therefore more steeply priced.


The modular approach had the advantage of quickness to market when Moore's Law was in full swing. A single chip die shrink was often enough to significantly surpass the competition in performance and power with everything being equal. Two die shrinks was usually enough for a bad design to overtake a good design. It became necessary for product updates or new products to occur every 6-12 months. With the cost of die shrinks, it was worthwhile to make enhancements to help stay competitive. CBM took about 7 years to get a major upgrade to the Amiga chipset out the doors with AGA and even it needed to be better. CBM wasn't the only causality of that time.

Today, the technology is slowing again. New chip fab processes are getting more difficult and expensive with fewer advantages due to current leakage. Processor designs are no longer changing quickly as advancements are reaching the limits of diminishing returns from using cheap transistors. The performance and power advantages of better integration are now being utilized again like the Amiga chipset was doing back in 1985. This is best exemplified by modern game console SoCs.

NutsAboutAmiga Quote:

Just point out Amiga was not a economy console when it was made, it was best console you can get, for less then a PC, there where alternatives like Amstrad, NES and few other not worth naming around when I got my Amiga500, back then PC where wherry expensive and had CGA graphics.


The Amiga was reasonably priced, especially considering the technology and quality.

1984 IBM AT $3995 (80286@6MHz 256kiB ram)
1984 Macintosh $2495 (68000@8MHz, 128kiB ram)
1985 Atari 520ST $800 (68000@8MHz, 512kiB ram)
1985 Amiga 1000 $1285 (68000@7MHz, 256kiB ram)
1986 Apple IIGS $999 (65C816@3MHz, 512kiB ram)
1986 Macintosh 512Ke $2000 (68000@8MHz, 512kiB ram)
1987 Amiga 500 $699 (68000@7MHz, 512kiB ram)

The Amiga was not a console until the CD32. Consoles were cheaper but also had lower end performance and specs at that time. The Atari ST damaged Amiga sales due to the performance/price if not factoring in the advantages of the Amiga "chipset".

NutsAboutAmiga Quote:

if buy game console today, its not designed to be economy class system, its designed to best it can for one thing games. this where commodore lost it. they doing a economy class system for poor people instead of focusing on gaming.


Modern consoles do focus on gaming but are power limited. There are higher end modular graphics cards for PCs but they use more power and require a bigger and more expensive power supply, case and fans. An integrated SoC, not unlike the Amiga chipset concept, is one of the keys to improving performance and reducing power consumption while reducing the price.

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agami 
Re: What defines Amiga: chipset or software?
Posted on 21-Nov-2021 6:45:22
#120 ]
Cult Member
Joined: 30-Jun-2008
Posts: 723
From: Melbourne, Australia

@OldFart

Quote:
Windows requires patience,
Apple requires a healthy bank account,
Linux requires skills,

This here is the essence of the sorry state desktop and laptop computing is in. And it does also spill over to server computing.

After so many decades to get it right, Windows is still a heterogeneous operating environment with an attempt at a homogeneous wrapper by a large software company, that to this very day still pulls shenanigans like the latest default browser config in Windows 11.
I've used Windows professionally since 3.1, and personally since 95. Improvements have certainly been made, but it is still my least favourite operating environment. I mostly use it for gaming/VR.

Apple has the right idea in many areas, but then fails when it comes to their level of total control. macOS a.k.a OS X, has been fairly stagnant, with most of Apple's operating environment concerns being focused on iPhone, iPad, and other devices. When it comes to work, I prefer it over Windows, but it is true that the "Price of Admission" is fairly high.

Linux is something that I have used professionally since 1996 and personally since 2001. My two servers at home, and my main desktop are running Linux. I also run a mail server in Digital Ocean on Linux.
Over the decades, I have used well over 10 different distributions, and while things have become better in Linux desktop and laptop environments, it still fails at what should be a very simple task in 2021, e.g. SMB file sharing. Should be as simple as right click on a folder, specify that you are sharing it, set permissions, and it just works. Not so.
Linux is capable of many things, but it certainly requires skill.

So the way I see it, all a future Amiga-inspired platform would have to do in order to be successful in a world where there is Windows, macOS, and many Linuxes, is to have the good parts of those 3, and:

- Be more intuitive than Windows,
- Be less expensive than Apple,
- Be way simpler than Linux.

Last edited by agami on 21-Nov-2021 at 11:51 PM.
Last edited by agami on 21-Nov-2021 at 06:51 AM.
Last edited by agami on 21-Nov-2021 at 06:49 AM.

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