The Haus

Friday, December 24, 1999

Hubble's Brain Transplant

I saw on Slashdot that the new brain that space shuttle Discovery astronauts gave to the Hubble Space Telescope consists of three linked computers running on Intel 486 chips. They use older chips because they have to test them to make sure they can survive a shuttle launch and the extremes of outer space. These replace chips that were "1980s verions" (8088? 80286?). You can check out the full story on ABC And yes, I've got the song "If I Only Had a Brain" from the Wizard of Oz going through my head.

The Master comments: Actually, the old Hubble systems were i386 based. So the i486 upgrade is not REALLY a big deal. However, the i486 is 2-10x faster than a i386 at the same clock anyways, so it's a heck of an improvement over the old computers.

News for 12/24/1999

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