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What workstations should we get?

Steven Smith smith at plasma.harvard.edu
Wed Sep 18 13:50:34 EST 1991

meinhof at sun1.ruf.uni-freiburg.de (Carl-Georg Meinhof) writes:

>Now it seems that SUN is lagging behind in its technology while
>other systems (IBM's RS6000, HP, NEXT) offer more bang for the
>buck. Is there as much software for molecular biologists
>developed for these machines as for SPARCstations? How much do
>they differ in terms of source code compatibility? Is it a big
>disadvantage that SUN is not part of OSF? 

  Dont be mislead by the fact that at this moment in time Sun may
be behind some platforms (HP/RS-6000) in bang per buck.  Every other
month someone else is the top dog in that race.  The more important
question is which machine runs the software that you wish to use.
Always pick your hardware based on your software.

  Another consideration is how robust is the operating system?  I know
that there were severe problems with the early versions of AIX on
the RS-6000.  Mach on the NeXT had some early problems as well, but has
come a long way from release 0.9.  The NeXT has a lot going for it.  A clean
consistant user interface, and many bundled applications.  It is probably
the least "standard" system on the market, but that may not be an issue
if it runs the software you need.

  I have a personal bias toward Sparc, as I have been developing an
integrated system for sequence (and phylogenetic) analysis using
Xview.  This package is available for free, and may be of interest
to you.

Steve Smith
Harvard Genome Lab
smith at nucleus.harvard.edu
Domain: curtiss at umiacs.umd.edu		     Phillip Curtiss
  UUCP:	uunet!mimsy!curtiss		UMIACS - Univ. of Maryland
 Phone:	+1-301-405-6710			  College Park, Md 20742

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