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I mean. I'm not sure what your point is trying to explain my own motivations to me. It was part of what I was getting paid to do at the time. But I didn't need the newest kernel to run on it, so I never ported beyond 3.9. Arguably had it been a passionate side project, I may have gone further. Trying to use this as some kind of capitalistic example of how the market forces just didn't motivate it enough is... missing a lot of the point around so much of what happens here and why a lot of the people who do this work continue to do it.

Also, while the T1 core may be somewhat dated, it is still the newest general purpose ASIC design that's ever been fabricated as a major CPU that you can actually download the verilog for and put on an FPGA.

The advances in computing power haven't been driven by tons of changes in the core units since the gigahertz wars. They are by no means static, but an OpenSPARC T1 core has a surprising amount of similarity to a SPARC core shipping in new designs today. It's an extremely valuable model and opportunity to play with hardware modifications that is otherwise unparalleled outside the few organizations that regularly fabricate new ASICs.

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