Talk:VAX 8800

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VAX 8800 naming ambiguity

The name "VAX 8800" designates two different matters:

  • A computer model: the first generation two processor variant of the VAX 8700,
  • the "VAX 8800 Family" of all of the first (VAX 8500, VAX 8530, VAX 8550, VAX 8700, and VAX 8800) generation models.

The meaning of "VAX 8800 Family" was probably later on extended to cover the second generation models (VAX 8810, VAX 8820, VAX 8830, and VAX 8840), too.

There was no VAX 8800 computer in the second generation.

I'd suggest to use "VAX 8800" for the single first generation computer, and "Second Generation VAX 88xx Computers" for the four second generation ones.

Oops, there is already the VAX 8810/8820/8830/8840 page, so let's use that one.

Could you please add a disambiguation page? I'll do the rest.

The current "VAX 8800" page as of now is a wild mix of both the first and second generation facts ...

Thanks! Vaxorcist (talk) 16:12, 21 May 2023 (CEST)

Rather than adding a disambiguation page, maybe turn 'VAX 8800' into the dab page? Although then where do we put the original 2-CPU variant? So I guess we put the dab page at VAX 8800 family - and we'll put a link to that at the head of VAX 8800 (the way there's a link at head of PDP-8)?
And maybe have a redirect from VAX 8500 family to VAX 8800 family? Or should it be from VAX 85x0 family? Or should the dab page be at VAX 85x0/88x0 family - and Template:Nav_VAX could point to that? Or maybe even VAX 85x0/87x0/88x0 family?
Then for the mixed content in the current "VAX 8800" page, all the second generation material should move to VAX 8810/8820/8830/8840. (Do we want to rename that to VAX 88x0?) Jnc (talk) 17:29, 21 May 2023 (CEST)
Well, "VAX 8800" is "two meanings in one expression" unfortunately. So I think a disambiguation page is appropriate.
The original 2-CPU variant could get the (fixed) VAX 8800 page, similar to the VAX 8700 page.
All the first generation models get one overview page for all as well as their individual pages (which are already there).
What might be a little confusing is the fact that as well the VAX 85xx as the VAX 8700 and the VAX 8800 are members of the "VAX 8800 family". There is/was definitely no "VAX 8500 family" whatsoever in "DEC language". The VAX 85xx models were the "smaller" members of the "VAX 8800 family" only.
I would not rename the VAX 8810/8820/8830/8840 page to VAX 88x0, although that would do no real harm - it's just a feeling.
And there will be the top-superordinate page First and Second Generation VAX 88xx Computer Models (including VAX 85xx), or is that title too long?
Did I answer all your questions? Vaxorcist (talk) 18:05, 21 May 2023 (CEST)
Yes, First and Second Generation VAX 88xx Computer Models (including VAX 85xx) is too long! How would a 'top-superordinate page' differ from the dab page? If you want to have a page with a fair amount of technical content, it does makes sense to have a separate page for that, though.
Yes, some of the question are answered. Left are:
Where should the dab page be, then - at VAX 8800 family?
If there is a page with a fair amount of technical material, should it cover both first-generation and second-generation VAX 88xx models? (Is there a fair amount in common between the first-generation and second-generation machines? If yes, yes one page; if not, no.)
Have Template:Nav_VAX point only to the 8800 dab page, not any of the first or second generation VAX 88xx pages? Jnc (talk) 18:41, 21 May 2023 (CEST)
Before going any further, could you please say in other words what a "dab page" is? You obviously hit the limits of my knowledge of the English language. If I had to guess I'd say it stands for "disambiguation", but I'm not sure. Vaxorcist (talk) 19:05, 21 May 2023 (CEST)
Yes, correct; it started on Wikipedia, and I have been using it here. 'Disambiguation' is just too many letters to type! :-) In my defense, I did use the full form here, to start with, before switching to the short form ("disambiguation page, maybe turn 'VAX 8800' into the dab page"). Jnc (talk) 19:59, 21 May 2023 (CEST)
New proposal: Page on top of it all: "Series of VAX 85xx, 8700, 88xx, and 897x Computer Systems"
One level below:
  • One page for the VAX 8500 and VAX 8530 sharing the same CPU: "851BA"
  • One page for the VAX 8550 (CPU: "855BA")
  • One Page for the VAX 8700 (CPU: "871BA")
  • One Page for the VAX 8800 (CPU: "882BA") including the explanation of the alternative meaning of "VAX 8800" (the "VAX 8800 Family"), so no more dab ;-))
  • One Page for the VAX 8810, VAX 8820, VAX 8830, VAX 8840, and VAX 8842 (2 Node VAXcluster System) sharing the same CPU: "885BA"
  • One Page for the VAX 8974, and VAX 8978 (large 4 and 8 Node VAXcluster Systems)
Looks cleaner, doesn't it? Vaxorcist (talk) 22:21, 21 May 2023 (CEST)
I like that! We just need a shorter name for the top page: How about VAX 85x0, 8700, 88xx, and 897x systems?
And Template:Nav_VAX could have a 'VAX 85x0/8700/88xx series' entry, linked to the top page. (I can't face adding '/897x' to that entry - that would make it too clunky!
You sure you don't want a VAX 8800 family dab page? I guess the VAX 8800 page covers the ground, though. Jnc (talk) 01:29, 22 May 2023 (CEST)