SANTA CLARITA, CALIF. Vista Controls Corp. has launched what it says is one of the first full MIL-STD single-board computers to be based on the PowerPC 750 microprocessor. With a broad operating temperature range of -55 degrees C to 85 degrees C, the rad-hard, conduction-cooled Model GPCP 750 "manages the most demanding applications in extremely severe environments," said national sales manager Chuck Parks, "including fire control systems, navigation and flight control, and sight-head stabilization." This VME board is based on a 200-MHz processor with 512 kbytes of cache, 32 Mbytes of DRAM, 16 Mbytes of flash and 512 kbytes of boot PROM. Operating system support is available for Vx Works and Tornado. Pricing starts at $18,500. Benign-environment development versions start at $12,500.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.