Multibus is a computer bus standard used in industrial systems. It was adopted as the IEEE 796 bus; the Multibus specification was important because it was a robust, well-thought out industry standard with a large form factor, so complex devices could be designed on it. Because it was a well-defined and well-documented industry standard, it allowed a Multibus-compatible industry to grow around it, with many companies making card cages and enclosures for it. Many others made CPU, other peripheral boards. In 1982 there were over 100 Multibus board and systems manufacturers; this allowed complex systems to be built from commercial off-the-shelf hardware, allowed companies to innovate by designing a proprietary Multibus board and integrating it with other vendors' hardware to create a system. A good example of this was Sun Microsystems with their Sun-2 workstations. Sun built custom-designed CPU, memory, SCSI, video display boards, added 3Com Ethernet networking boards, Xylogics SMD disk controllers, Ciprico Tapemaster 1/2 inch tape controllers, Sky Floating Point Processor, Systech 16-port Terminal Interfaces in order to configure the system as a workstation or a file server.
Other workstation vendors who used Multibus-based designs included HP/Apollo and Silicon Graphics IRIS. The Intel Multibus I & II product line was purchased from Intel by RadiSys Corporation, which in 2002 was purchased by U. S. Technologies, Inc. Multibus is an asynchronous bus that accommodates devices with various transfer rates while maintaining maximum throughput, it had 20 address lines so it could address up to 1 Mb of I/O locations. Most Multibus I/O devices only decoded the first 64 Kb of address space. Multibus supported multi-master functionality that allowed it to share the Multibus with multiple processors and other DMA devices; the standard Multibus form factor was a 12-inch-wide, 6.75-inch-deep circuit board with two ejection levers on the front edge. The board had two buses; the wider P1 bus which pin assignment was defined by the Multibus specification. A second smaller P2 bus was defined as a private bus. Multibus includes the following buses: Multibus System Bus — adopted as IEEE 796 iSBX — adopted as IEEE P959 iLBX Local Bus Extension Multichannel I/O Bus IEEE-796: Microcomputer System Bus.
The cards did not use front panels, they used card edge fingers as the connectors. Companies like Northwest Technical still provide "End of Life" products for Multibus I; this bus is obsolete. IEC 796-1:1990 Microprocessor system bus—8-bit and 16-bit data — Part 1: Functional description with electrical and timing specifications IEC 796-2:1990 Microprocessor system bus—8-bit and 16-bit data — Part 2: Mechanical and pin descriptions for the system bus configuration, with edge connectors IEC 796-3:1990 Microprocessor system BUS I, 8-bit and 16-bit data — Part 3: Mechanical and pin descriptions for the Eurocard configuration with pin and socket connectors IEEE-1296 32-bit/10 MHz bus, at 40 Mbyte/s. Card sizes are 3U x 220 mm, 6U x 220 mm; these cards are larger than the VME Eurocard sizes. It uses TTL gates for drivers and the Backplane Connectors are DIN 41612 type C. Multibus II is not yet considered obsolete, but considered mature. IEEE-STD-1296: High-performance synchronous 32-bit bus: Multibus II, released in 1987, 1994.
As ISO/IEC 10861. ISO/IEC 10861:1994 Information technology—Microprocessor systems—High-performance synchronous 32-bit bus: Multibus II Multibus-II hardware running the iRMX operating system is used in the majority of the core Automatic Train Supervision subsystems on CLSCS, the London Underground Central line Signals Control System; this was commissioned from the mid-1990s. The Central line is an Automatic Train Operation line; the Automatic Train Supervision elements use a mixture of iRMX on Multibus, Solaris on SPARC computers. Sixteen Multibus-based Local Site Computers are distributed along the line together with six central Multibus-based subsystems in the control centre. Real time control and communications functions are provided by the Multibus-based processors and Sun workstations provide database functions and the operator consoles in the control room. All subsystem computers are dual redundant; the safety-critical Automatic Train Protection component is provided by trackside and train-borne equipment that does not use Multibus.
The system was still in full operation as of 2011. In the control centre, Westinghouse provided a cut-down mimic of the system for staff training and software test purposes using much of the same hardware and software as the full ATS system, but connected to a computer to simulate train movements and signalling behaviour. Oslo Metro or Oslo Tunnelbane uses a similar, although less complex Westinghouse-supplied Multibus hardware control system through the central Common Tunnel or Fellestunnelen tracks, but was expected to be decommissioned in 2011. S-100 bus VMEbus Mark Sokos' Multibus I Description Introduction to the System 310 Microcomputer, Intel Corporation. Multibus-based system. Intel Multibus Specification, Intel Corporation. Intel iLBX Bus Specification, Intel Corporation. US Technologies official Multibus site
Graphics processing unit
A graphics processing unit is a specialized electronic circuit designed to manipulate and alter memory to accelerate the creation of images in a frame buffer intended for output to a display device. GPUs are used in embedded systems, mobile phones, personal computers and game consoles. Modern GPUs are efficient at manipulating computer graphics and image processing, their parallel structure makes them more efficient than general-purpose CPUs for algorithms that process large blocks of data in parallel. In a personal computer, a GPU can be present on a video card or embedded on the motherboard. In certain CPUs, they are embedded on the CPU die; the term GPU has been used from at least the 1980s. It was popularized by Nvidia in 1999, who marketed the GeForce 256 as "the world's first GPU", it was presented as a "single-chip processor with integrated transform, triangle setup/clipping, rendering engines". Rival ATI Technologies coined the term "visual processing unit" or VPU with the release of the Radeon 9700 in 2002.
Arcade system boards have been using specialized graphics chips since the 1970s. In early video game hardware, the RAM for frame buffers was expensive, so video chips composited data together as the display was being scanned out on the monitor. Fujitsu's MB14241 video shifter was used to accelerate the drawing of sprite graphics for various 1970s arcade games from Taito and Midway, such as Gun Fight, Sea Wolf and Space Invaders; the Namco Galaxian arcade system in 1979 used specialized graphics hardware supporting RGB color, multi-colored sprites and tilemap backgrounds. The Galaxian hardware was used during the golden age of arcade video games, by game companies such as Namco, Gremlin, Konami, Nichibutsu and Taito. In the home market, the Atari 2600 in 1977 used a video shifter called the Television Interface Adaptor; the Atari 8-bit computers had ANTIC, a video processor which interpreted instructions describing a "display list"—the way the scan lines map to specific bitmapped or character modes and where the memory is stored.
6502 machine code subroutines could be triggered on scan lines by setting a bit on a display list instruction. ANTIC supported smooth vertical and horizontal scrolling independent of the CPU; the NEC µPD7220 was one of the first implementations of a graphics display controller as a single Large Scale Integration integrated circuit chip, enabling the design of low-cost, high-performance video graphics cards such as those from Number Nine Visual Technology. It became one of the best known of; the Williams Electronics arcade games Robotron 2084, Joust and Bubbles, all released in 1982, contain custom blitter chips for operating on 16-color bitmaps. In 1985, the Commodore Amiga featured a custom graphics chip, with a blitter unit accelerating bitmap manipulation, line draw, area fill functions. Included is a coprocessor with its own primitive instruction set, capable of manipulating graphics hardware registers in sync with the video beam, or driving the blitter. In 1986, Texas Instruments released the TMS34010, the first microprocessor with on-chip graphics capabilities.
It could run general-purpose code, but it had a graphics-oriented instruction set. In 1990-1992, this chip would become the basis of the Texas Instruments Graphics Architecture Windows accelerator cards. In 1987, the IBM 8514 graphics system was released as one of the first video cards for IBM PC compatibles to implement fixed-function 2D primitives in electronic hardware; the same year, Sharp released the X68000, which used a custom graphics chipset, powerful for a home computer at the time, with a 65,536 color palette and hardware support for sprites and multiple playfields serving as a development machine for Capcom's CP System arcade board. Fujitsu competed with the FM Towns computer, released in 1989 with support for a full 16,777,216 color palette. In 1988, the first dedicated polygonal 3D graphics boards were introduced in arcades with the Namco System 21 and Taito Air System. In 1991, S3 Graphics introduced the S3 86C911, which its designers named after the Porsche 911 as an indication of the performance increase it promised.
The 86C911 spawned a host of imitators: by 1995, all major PC graphics chip makers had added 2D acceleration support to their chips. By this time, fixed-function Windows accelerators had surpassed expensive general-purpose graphics coprocessors in Windows performance, these coprocessors faded away from the PC market. Throughout the 1990s, 2D GUI acceleration continued to evolve; as manufacturing capabilities improved, so did the level of integration of graphics chips. Additional application programming interfaces arrived for a variety of tasks, such as Microsoft's WinG graphics library for Windows 3.x, their DirectDraw interface for hardware acceleration of 2D games within Windows 95 and later. In the early- and mid-1990s, real-time 3D graphics were becoming common in arcade and console games, which led to an increasing public demand for hardware-accelerated 3D graphics. Early examples of mass-market 3D graphics hardware can be found in arcade system boards such as the Sega Model 1, Namco System 22, Sega Model 2, the fifth-generation video game consoles such as the Saturn, PlayStation and Nintendo 64.
Arcade systems such as the Sega Model 2 and Namco Magic Edge Hornet Simulator in 1993 were capable of hardware T&L years before appearing in consu
Free and open-source software
Free and open-source software is software that can be classified as both free software and open-source software. That is, anyone is licensed to use, copy and change the software in any way, the source code is shared so that people are encouraged to voluntarily improve the design of the software; this is in contrast to proprietary software, where the software is under restrictive copyright licensing and the source code is hidden from the users. FOSS maintains the software user's civil liberty rights. Other benefits of using FOSS can include decreased software costs, increased security and stability, protecting privacy and giving users more control over their own hardware. Free and open-source operating systems such as Linux and descendants of BSD are utilized today, powering millions of servers, desktops and other devices. Free-software licenses and open-source licenses are used by many software packages; the free-software movement and the open-source software movement are online social movements behind widespread production and adoption of FOSS.
"Free and open-source software" is an umbrella term for software, considered both Free software and open-source software. FOSS allows the user to inspect the source code and provides a high level of control of the software's functions compared to proprietary software; the term "free software" does not refer to the monetary cost of the software at all, but rather whether the license maintains the software user's civil liberties. There are a number of related terms and abbreviations for free and open-source software, or free/libre and open-source software. Although there is a complete overlap between free-software licenses and open-source-software licenses, there is a strong philosophical disagreement between the advocates of these two positions; the terminology of FOSS or "Free and Open-source software" was created to be a neutral on these philosophical disagreements between the FSF and OSI and have a single unified term that could refer to both concepts. As the Free Software Foundation explains the philosophical difference between free software and open-source software: "The two terms describe the same category of software, but they stand for views based on fundamentally different values.
Open-source is a development methodology. For the free-software movement, free software is an ethical imperative, essential respect for the users' freedom. By contrast, the philosophy of open-source considers issues in terms of how to make software “better”—in a practical sense only." In parallel to this the Open Source Initiative considers many free-software licenses to be open source. These include the latest versions of the FSF's three main licenses: the GPL, the Lesser General Public License, the GNU Affero General Public License. Richard Stallman's Free Software Definition, adopted by the Free Software Foundation, defines free software as a matter of liberty not price, it upholds the Four Essential Freedoms; the earliest-known publication of the definition of his free-software idea was in the February 1986 edition of the FSF's now-discontinued GNU's Bulletin publication. The canonical source for the document is in the philosophy section of the GNU Project website; as of August 2017, it is published there in 40 languages.
To meet the definition of "free software", the FSF requires the software's licensing rights what the FSF respect the civil liberties / human rights of what the FSF calls the software user's "Four Essential Freedoms". The freedom to run the program as you wish, for any purpose; the freedom to study how the program works, change it so it does your computing as you wish. Access to the source code is a precondition for this; the freedom to redistribute copies. The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others. By doing this you can give the whole community a chance to benefit from your changes. Access to the source code is a precondition for this; the open-source-software definition is used by the Open Source Initiative to determine whether a software license qualifies for the organization's insignia for Open-source software. The definition was based on the Debian Free Software Guidelines and adapted by Bruce Perens. Perens did not base his writing on the Four Essential Freedoms of free software from the Free Software Foundation, which were only available on the web.
Perens subsequently stated that he felt Eric Raymond's promotion of Open-source unfairly overshadowed the Free Software Foundation's efforts and reaffirmed his support for Free software. In the following 2000s, he spoke about open source again. In the 1950s through the 1980s, it was common for computer users to have the source code for all programs they used, the permission and ability to modify it for their own use. Software, including source code, was shared by individuals who used computers as public domain software. Most companies had a business model based on hardware sales, provided or bundled software with hardware, free of charge. By the late 1960s, the prevailing business model around software was changing. A growing and evolving software industry was competing with the hardware manufacturer's bundled software products. Leased machines required software support while providing n
GNU General Public License
The GNU General Public License is a widely-used free software license, which guarantees end users the freedom to run, study and modify the software. The license was written by Richard Stallman of the Free Software Foundation for the GNU Project, grants the recipients of a computer program the rights of the Free Software Definition; the GPL is a copyleft license, which means that derivative work can only be distributed under the same license terms. This is in distinction to permissive free software licenses, of which the BSD licenses and the MIT License are widely-used examples. GPL was the first copyleft license for general use; the GPL license family has been one of the most popular software licenses in the free and open-source software domain. Prominent free-software programs licensed under the GPL include the Linux kernel and the GNU Compiler Collection. David A. Wheeler argues that the copyleft provided by the GPL was crucial to the success of Linux-based systems, giving the programmers who contributed to the kernel the assurance that their work would benefit the whole world and remain free, rather than being exploited by software companies that would not have to give anything back to the community.
In 2007, the third version of the license was released to address some perceived problems with the second version that were discovered during its long-time usage. To keep the license up to date, the GPL license includes an optional "any version" clause, allowing users to choose between the original terms or the terms in new versions as updated by the FSF. Developers can omit it; the GPL was written by Richard Stallman in 1989, for use with programs released as part of the GNU project. The original GPL was based on a unification of similar licenses used for early versions of GNU Emacs, the GNU Debugger and the GNU C Compiler; these licenses contained similar provisions to the modern GPL, but were specific to each program, rendering them incompatible, despite being the same license. Stallman's goal was to produce one license that could be used for any project, thus making it possible for many projects to share code; the second version of the license, version 2, was released in 1991. Over the following 15 years, members of the free software community became concerned over problems in the GPLv2 license that could let someone exploit GPL-licensed software in ways contrary to the license's intent.
These problems included tivoization, compatibility issues similar to those of the Affero General Public License—and patent deals between Microsoft and distributors of free and open-source software, which some viewed as an attempt to use patents as a weapon against the free software community. Version 3 was developed to attempt to address these concerns and was released on 29 June 2007. Version 1 of the GNU GPL, released on 25 February 1989, prevented what were the two main ways that software distributors restricted the freedoms that define free software; the first problem was that distributors may publish binary files only—executable, but not readable or modifiable by humans. To prevent this, GPLv1 stated that copying and distributing copies or any portion of the program must make the human-readable source code available under the same licensing terms; the second problem was that distributors might add restrictions, either to the license, or by combining the software with other software that had other restrictions on distribution.
The union of two sets of restrictions would apply to the combined work, thus adding unacceptable restrictions. To prevent this, GPLv1 stated that modified versions, as a whole, had to be distributed under the terms in GPLv1. Therefore, software distributed under the terms of GPLv1 could be combined with software under more permissive terms, as this would not change the terms under which the whole could be distributed. However, software distributed under GPLv1 could not be combined with software distributed under a more restrictive license, as this would conflict with the requirement that the whole be distributable under the terms of GPLv1. According to Richard Stallman, the major change in GPLv2 was the "Liberty or Death" clause, as he calls it – Section 7; the section says that licensees may distribute a GPL-covered work only if they can satisfy all of the license's obligations, despite any other legal obligations they might have. In other words, the obligations of the license may not be severed due to conflicting obligations.
This provision is intended to discourage any party from using a patent infringement claim or other litigation to impair users' freedom under the license. By 1990, it was becoming apparent that a less restrictive license would be strategically useful for the C library and for software libraries that did the job of existing proprietary ones; the version numbers diverged in 1999 when version 2.1 of the LGPL was released, which renamed it the GNU Lesser General Public License to reflect its place in the philosophy. Most "GPLv2 or any version" is stated by users of the license, to allow upgrading to GPLv3. In late 2005, the Free Software Foundation announced work on version 3 of the GPL. On 16 January 2006, the first "discussion draft" of GPLv3 was published, the public consultation began; the public consultation was planned for ni
The Mystique and Mystique 220 were 2D, 3D, video accelerator cards for personal computers designed by Matrox, using the VGA connector. The original Mystique was introduced in 1996, with the upgraded Mystique 220 having been released in 1997. Matrox had been known for years as a significant player in the high-end 2D graphics accelerator market. Cards they produced were Windows accelerators, the company's Millennium card, released in 1995, supported MS-DOS as well. In 1996 Next Generation called Millenium "the definitive 2D accelerator." With regard to 3D acceleration, Matrox stepped forward in 1994 with their Impression Plus. However, that card only could accelerate a limited feature set, was targeted at CAD applications; the Impression could not perform hardware texture mapping, for example, requiring Gouraud shading or lower-quality techniques. Few games took advantage of the 3D capabilities of Impression Plus, with the only known games being the three titles that were bundled with the card in its'3D Superpack' CD bundle: 3D fighting game, Sento by 47 Tek.
The newer Millennium card contained 3D capabilities similar to the Impression Plus, was nearly as limited. Without support for texturing, the cards were limited in visual enhancement capability; the only game to be accelerated by the Millennium was the CDROM version of NASCAR Racing, which received a considerable increase in speed over software rendering but no difference in image quality. The answer to these limitations, Matrox's first attempt at targeting the consumer gaming PC market, would be the Matrox Mystique, it was based on the Millennium but with various additions and some cost-cutting measures. The Mystique was a 64-bit 2D GUI and video accelerator with 3D acceleration support. Mystique has "Matrox Simple Interface" rendering API, it was one of many early products by add-in graphics board vendors that attempted to achieve good combined 2D & 3D performance for consumer-level personal computers. The board used a 64-bit SGRAM memory interface instead of the more expensive WRAM aboard the Matrox Millennium.
SGRAM offered performance approaching WRAM. Mystique came in configurations ranging from 2 MB SGRAM up to 8 MB. Mystique had various ports on the card for memory expansion and additional hardware peripherals; the 8 MB configuration used the memory expansion module. Add-on cards from Matrox included the Rainbow Runner Video, a board offering MPEG-1 and AVI video playback with video inputs and outputs; the other add-on was called Rainbow Runner TV, an ISA-based TV tuner card for watching TV on PC. Mystique's 2D performance was close to that of the much more expensive Millennium card at XGA 1024x768 resolution and lower, where the SGRAM bandwidth was not a performance hindrance; the Mystique used an internal 170 MHz RAMDAC, reduced from the external 220 MHz RAMDAC onboard Millennium, making it the first Matrox video processor using an internal RAMDAC. The frequency reduction affected the maximum refresh rate the card could run at high resolutions, crippling the Mystique for users of displays running UXGA 1600x1200, for example.
Its 2D performance was measured as excellent, beating its peers such as the S3 ViRGE-based and the ATI Mach64-based video cards. Mystique was Matrox's most feature-rich 3D accelerator in 1997, but still lacked key features including bilinear filtering and anti-aliasing support. Instead, the Mystique uses nearest-neighbor interpolation, causing heavy pixelization in textures, stippled textures for transparency. Without mipmapping support, textures in the distance appear to "swim", waving around and appearing "noisy", because the texture detail wasn't being properly managed and this caused texture aliasing; the company's reasoning for not including the higher-quality features was that performance was more important than visual quality. At the time, semiconductor fabrication processes and 3D hardware architecture design expertise was limited. Including bilinear filtering would have incurred a significant cost in the chip's transistor budget for more computational resources and reduce graphics core clock speed and performance due to a larger chip design.
There was the manufacturing cost consideration that comes with a larger processor size. Matrox's words were not without weight because the Mystique did handily outperform the other 2D/3D boards at the time, such as S3 ViRGE and early ATI Rage products, although its visual quality was lower than those accelerators. In general, compared to its peers, the Matrox Mystique was a competent board with its own set of advantages and disadvantages as was typical in this era of early 3D accelerators, it performed well for an early 2D/3D combo card. Its 2D support rivaled the best cards available for quality, however, it was not uncommon to pair up the Mystique or another Matrox card with a 3Dfx Voodoo Graphics 3D-only board because the Voodoo cards were the fastest and most well-supported 3D accelerators at the time. Detractors, referred to the card as the "Matrox Mystake". Driver support for the Mystique was robust at launch; the card directly supported all of Microsoft's operating systems including MS-DOS, Windows 3.1x, Windows 95, Windows NT.
Mystique supported IBM's OS/2 operating system. The retail version of Mystique included 3 3D game titles, including: MechWarrior 2 Mystique edition, Destruction Derby 2, Scorched Planet. Matrox released a newer version of the Mystique in 1997; the name gives the only significant change. This made the Mystique equiv
Nvidia Corporation, more referred to as Nvidia, is an American technology company incorporated in Delaware and based in Santa Clara, California. It designs graphics processing units for the gaming and professional markets, as well as system on a chip units for the mobile computing and automotive market, its primary GPU product line, labeled "GeForce", is in direct competition with Advanced Micro Devices' "Radeon" products. Nvidia expanded its presence in the gaming industry with its handheld Shield Portable, Shield Tablet and Shield Android TV. Since 2014, Nvidia has shifted to become a platform company focused on four markets – gaming, professional visualization, data centers and auto. Nvidia is now focused on artificial intelligence. In addition to GPU manufacturing, Nvidia provides parallel processing capabilities to researchers and scientists that allow them to efficiently run high-performance applications, they are deployed in supercomputing sites around the world. More it has moved into the mobile computing market, where it produces Tegra mobile processors for smartphones and tablets as well as vehicle navigation and entertainment systems.
In addition to AMD, its competitors include Intel and Arm. In the early 1990s, the three co-founders hypothesized that the proper direction for the next wave of computing would be accelerated or graphics based, they believed that this model of computing could solve problems that general-purpose computing fundamentally couldn't. They observed that video games were some of the most computationally challenging problems, but would have high sales volume. With a capital of $40,000, the company was born; the company had no name and the co-founders named all their files NV, as in "next version". The need to incorporate the company prompted the co-founders to review all words with those two letters, leading them to "invidia", the Latin word for "envy". Three people co-founded Nvidia in April 1993: Jensen Huang, a Taiwanese American director of CoreWare at LSI Logic and a microprocessor designer at Advanced Micro Devices Chris Malachowsky, an electrical engineer who worked at Sun Microsystems Curtis Priem a senior staff engineer and graphics chip designer at Sun MicrosystemsThe company received $20 million of venture capital funding from Sequoia Capital and others.
The release of the RIVA TNT in 1998 solidified Nvidia's reputation for developing capable graphics adapters. In late 1999, Nvidia released the GeForce 256, most notably introducing on-board transformation and lighting to consumer-level 3D hardware. Running at 120 MHz and featuring four pixel pipelines, it implemented advanced video acceleration, motion compensation and hardware sub-picture alpha blending; the GeForce outperformed existing products by a wide margin. Due to the success of its products, Nvidia won the contract to develop the graphics hardware for Microsoft's Xbox game console, which earned Nvidia a $200 million advance. However, the project took many of its best engineers away from other projects. In the short term this did not matter, the GeForce2 GTS shipped in the summer of 2000. In December 2000, Nvidia reached an agreement to acquire the intellectual assets of its one-time rival 3dfx, a pioneer in consumer 3D graphics technology leading the field from mid 1990s until 2000; the acquisition process was finalized in April 2002.
In July 2002, Nvidia acquired Exluna for an undisclosed sum. Exluna made the personnel were merged into the Cg project. In August 2003, Nvidia acquired MediaQ for US$70 million. On April 22, 2004, Nvidia acquired iReady a provider of high performance TCP/IP and iSCSI offload solutions. In December 2004, it was announced that Nvidia would assist Sony with the design of the graphics processor in the PlayStation 3 game console. On December 14, 2005, Nvidia acquired ULI Electronics, which at the time supplied third-party southbridge parts for chipsets to ATI, Nvidia's competitor. In March 2006, Nvidia acquired Hybrid Graphics. In December 2006, along with its main rival in the graphics industry AMD, received subpoenas from the U. S. Department of Justice regarding possible antitrust violations in the graphics card industry. Forbes named Nvidia its Company of the Year for 2007, citing the accomplishments it made during the said period as well as during the previous five years. On January 5, 2007, Nvidia announced that it had completed the acquisition of Inc..
In February 2008, Nvidia acquired Ageia, developer of the PhysX physics engine and physics processing unit. Nvidia announced. In July 2008, Nvidia took a write-down of $200 million on its first-quarter revenue, after reporting that certain mobile chipsets and GPUs produced by the company had "abnormal failure rates" due to manufacturing defects. Nvidia, did not reveal the affected products. In September 2008, Nvidia became the subject of a class action lawsuit over the defects, claiming that the faulty GPUs had been incorporated into certain laptop models manufactured by Apple Inc. Dell, HP. In September 2010, Nvidia reached a settlement, in which it would reimburse owners of the affected laptops for repairs or, in some cases, replacement. On January 10, 2011, Nvidia signed a six-year, $1.5 billion cross-licensing agreement with Intel, ending all litigation between the two companies. In November 2011, after unveiling it at Mobile World Congress, Nvidia released its Tegra 3 ARM system-on-chip for mobile devices.
Nvidia claimed that the chip featured the
The S-100 bus or Altair bus, IEEE696-1983, is an early computer bus designed in 1974 as a part of the Altair 8800. The S-100 bus was the first industry standard expansion bus for the microcomputer industry. S-100 computers, consisting of processor and peripheral cards, were produced by a number of manufacturers; the S-100 bus formed the basis for homebrew computers whose builders implemented drivers for CP/M and MP/M. These S-100 microcomputers ran the gamut from hobbyist toy to small business workstation and were common in early home computers until the advent of the IBM PC; the S-100 bus is a passive backplane of 100-pin printed circuit board edge connectors wired in parallel. Circuit cards measuring 5 × 10-inches serving the functions of CPU, memory, or I/O interface plugged into these connectors; the bus signal definitions follow those of an 8080 microprocessor system, since the Intel 8080 microprocessor was the first microprocessor hosted on the S-100 bus. The 100 lines of the S-100 bus can be grouped into four types: 1) Power, 2) Data, 3) Address, 4) Clock and control.
Power supplied on the bus is bulk unregulated +8 Volt DC and ±16 Volt DC, designed to be regulated on the cards to +5 V, -5 V and +12 V for Intel 8080 CPU IC, ±12 V RS-232 line driver ICs, +12 V for disk drive motors. The onboard voltage regulation is performed by devices of the 78xx family; these were linear regulators which are mounted on heat sinks. The bi-directional 8-bit data bus of the Intel 8080 is split into two unidirectional 8-bit data buses; these two 8-bit busses would be combined to support a 16-bit data width for more advanced processors. The address bus is 16-bits wide in the initial implementation and extended to 24-bits wide. A bus control signal can put these lines in a tri-state condition to allow direct memory access; the Cromemco Dazzler, for example, is an early S-100 card that retrieved digital images from memory using direct memory access. Clock and control signals are used to manage the traffic on the bus. For example, the DO Disable line will tristate the address lines during direct memory access.
Unassigned lines of the original bus specification were assigned to support more advanced processors. For example, the Zilog Z-80 processor has a non-maskable interrupt line that the Intel 8080 processor does not. One unassigned line of the S-100 bus was reassigned to support the non-maskable interrupt request. During the design of the Altair, the hardware required to make a usable machine was not available in time for the January 1975 launch date; the designer, Ed Roberts had the problem of the backplane taking up too much room. Attempting to avoid these problems, he placed the existing components in a case with additional "slots", so that the missing components could be plugged in when they became available; the backplane is split with the CPU on a fifth. He looked for an inexpensive source of connectors, he came across a supply of military surplus 100-pin edge connectors; the 100-pin bus was created by an anonymous draftsman, who selected the connector from a parts catalog and arbitrarily assigned signal names to groups of connector pins.
A burgeoning industry of "clone" machines followed the introduction of the Altair in 1975. Most of these used the same bus layout as the Altair; these companies were forced to refer to the system as the "Altair bus", wanted another name in order to avoid referring to their competitor when describing their own system. The "S-100" name, short for "Standard 100", was coined by Harry Garland and Roger Melen, co-founders of Cromemco. While on a flight to attend the Atlantic City PC'76 microcomputer conference in August 1976, they shared the cabin with Bob Marsh and Lee Felsenstein of Processor Technology. Melen went over to them to convince them to adopt the same name, he had a beer in his hand and when the plane hit a bump, Melen spilt some the beer on Marsh. Marsh agreed to use the name, which Melen ascribes to him wanting to get Melon to leave with his beer; the term first appeared in print in a Cromemco advertisement in the November 1976 issue of Byte magazine. The first symposium on the S-100 bus, moderated by Jim Warren, was held November 20, 1976 at Diablo Valley College with a panel consisting of Harry Garland, George Morrow, Lee Felsenstein.
Just one year the S-100 Bus would be described as "the most used busing standard developed in the computer industry."Cromemco was the largest of the S-100 manufacturers, followed by Vector Graphic and North Star Computers. Other innovators were companies such as IMS Associates, Inc.. Godbout Electronics, Ithaca Intersystems. In May 1984, Microsystems published a comprehensive S-100 product directory listing over 500 "S-100/IEEE-696" products from over 150 companies; the S-100 bus signals were simple to create using an 8080 CPU, but less so when using other processors like the 68000. More board space was occupied by signal conversion logic. Nonetheless by 1984, eleven different processors were hosted on the S-100 bus, from the 8-bit Intel 8080 to the 16-bit Zilog Z-8000. In 1986, Cromemco introduced the XXU card, designed by Ed Lupin, utilizing a 32-bit Motorola 68020 processor; as the S-100 bus gained momentum, there was a need to develop a formal specification of the bus to help assure compatibility of products produced by different manufacturers.
There was a need to extend the bus so that it could support processors more capable than the Intel 8080 used in the original Altair Computer. In May 1978, George Morrow and Howard Fullmer published a “Proposed Standard