Order of the Butterfly
Posts: 365 from 2003/3/28
Hi all, long time no see.
I can answer a point here...
Nvidia have 2 options:
1) Take an existing ARM core and tweak it to run faster.
2) Get an Architecture license and design their own core.
In both cases the ISA is the same. The Architecture licensees are required to implement the full ISA.
That said add-ons are not required, the NEON vector extensions (think AltiVec) are optional. Surprisingly Tegra 2 does not have NEON.
Hope that answers that one.
One of the problems the MorphOS team have is the Apple machines they are currently targeting have no documentation. At best they'll be able to look at Linux code but otherwise it's reverse engineering.
For an ARM port they can get the docs for the ARM architecture by going to ARM, filling in a form and downloading them.
That won't give them the full docs to whatever chip they target but it's better than reverse engineering.
Getting docs for other parts is likely to be rather more difficult. Companies are getting very paranoid about patent trolls these days so wont give out technical docs without very good reason. Being closed source and commercial might help though.
OTOH Genesi's contacts with ARM could prove very useful.
As for 64 bit, scroll to the bottom of this