Mac IIcx; workshop (152)

Thu, 30 Mar 89 20:50:09 EST

Humanist Mailing List, Vol. 2, No. 782. Thursday, 30 Mar 1989.

(1) Date: Thursday, 30 March 1989 1134-EST (76 lines)
Subject: A quick review of the Mac IIcx

(2) Date: Thu, 30 Mar 89 14:45:58 EST (57 lines)
From: (Donald E Walker)
Subject: workshop on lexical acquisition

(1) --------------------------------------------------------------------
Date: Thursday, 30 March 1989 1134-EST
Subject: A quick review of the Mac IIcx

Macintosh users that I know have been pretty excited by the release of
the Mac IIcx, Apple's newest machine. It's still pretty rare--the
University consortiums in this area won't be getting theirs for another
month or two. I've been lucky enough to get hold of one, and I thought
that perhaps some subscribers to humanist@utoronto might be

The box. The first thing that you notice is the reduced size--the CPU
is about five or six inches shorter than the Mac II. It's a little
"boxier" in appearence than the Mac II, but it looks nice standing on
its side (nice touch: the rubber feet on the bottom of the box can be
moved to the side). The inside is well-designed: all modular
construction, which makes it easy to disassemble the thing into five
pieces in a couple of minutes. It's much easier to get to the slots or
add memory to the IIcx than it is for the II or IIx.

Speed: You get the speed benefits of the 68030, about 15-20% faster
than the 68020 Mac II--same processor speed, 16mz, however. The
SuperDrive seems quicker than the older 800K drives (the SuperDrive
reads 1.4 meg floppies, reads and writes MS-DOS, PRODOS and OS/2
formats, with translator software included with the IIcx), but not by a
lot. It's difficult for me to judge speed, because I'm using the 80 meg
Cirrus drive supplied by Apple, which has an average seek time of about
15ms--a lot faster than the hard drives I'm accustomed to. Overall, I
get the feeling that the IIcx is somewhere between 25% to as much as 50%
faster for common tasks, at least with the hardware configuration I'm

It's quiet. Really quiet. I was annoyed by the loudness of the Mac
II's fan; the IIcx is remarkably quiet by comparison.

Overall benefits of the IIcx: Some increase in speed over the II--very
substantial over any 68000-based Mac. (I forgot to mention the 68882
co-processor, which seems to run faster than the 68881 that comes with
the Mac II). You get the advantages of the 68030--a built-in PMMU, for
example, which will let you run the true multi-tasking operating system
that Apple is promising in the next year or so. You'd have to buy a
separate chip for the Mac II to do this. The SuperDrive floppy drive:
1.4 meg floppies, running faster than the old 800K drives, and the
ability to read/write MS-DOS, PRODOS and OS/2 floppies (on a 3 1/2 inch

The look and feel of the thing is lean, clean--it looks neater than a
Mac II. A small detail, perhaps, but noteworthy.

Tradeoffs: You can only have one internal flopy drive, though you can
add an external floppy (you can't add an external floppy to the Mac II
or Mac IIx). Internal drives can only be of 3 1/2 inch half-height
format, limiting the capacity somewhat--you won't find too many 300 meg
drives for this box. You have only three slots--or two, as you must
devote one slot to the video card. That's two fewer slots than the Mac
II or IIx, though the great majority of users won't need five slots.

The price for a fully-configured Mac IIcx is about the price for a
similarly-configured Mac II. If you're looking to move up from a 68000
machine, the Mac IIcx is a better choice than the Mac II. If you
already have a Mac II, and you could add the SuperDrive and a PMMU for
about $1000, probably less than the difference between what you'll get
for the old machine, and what you'd pay for the Mac IIcx. You wouldn't
get the speed increase of the 68030, but you would get the functionality.
If you need the five slots, you need the Mac II or IIx. If you need
true portability in a 68030 (the IIcx is light, weighing less than a Mac
Plus, but it isn't really portable), you need to get an SE/30, which has
the SuperDrive, 68030, Color QuickDraw (you can attach an external color
monitor), but not the NuBus slots, though I'm sure that third-party
developers will be releasing expansion housings soon.

In brief, I like this machine a lot--overall, it's more satisfying than
any other Mac I've used.

(2) --------------------------------------------------------------60----
Date: Thu, 30 Mar 89 14:45:58 EST
From: (Donald E Walker)

First International Workshop on Lexical Acquisition
21 August 1989
Detroit, Michigan

Organized by
Roy Byrd - IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
Nicoletta Calzolari - University of Pisa
Paul Jacobs - General Electric Research and Development Center
James Pustejovsky - Brandeis University
Uri Zernik - General Electric Research and Development Center

This is a call for papers for a one-day workshop on Lexical
Acquisition to be held at IJCAI-89. We will accommodate 30
participants, 15 of whom will be invited to give talks. Position
papers will be collected and published in an edited volume.

For Natural Language systems to become more robust they require
huge lexicons, providing both syntax and semantics. Existing
on-line lexicons are small in size and cannot satisfy all the
requirements of diverse Natural Language systems. Lexical acquisition
and computational lexicology have emerged as major research areas
addressing these problems. We will investigate in the workshop
the following issues:

* What are the uses of lexicons? (e.g., parsing, text processing, generation,
* What should be the contents of a lexicon (e.g., syntax, semantics,
morphology), and how should these components be integrated?
phonology, etc.
* How is a lexicon organized? (e.g., hierarchy, subcategorization, indexing)
* What are possible acquisition resources? (e.g., text, corpus, context,
machine-readable dictionaries)
* How can a lexicon be used? (e.g., customizing a lexicon to a domain by
* What are the necessary utilities? (e.g., tool kits for computational

To participate, please submit a 3-page position paper (4 copies)
by May 15 highlighting: (a) the specific problem addressed;
(b) the approach; (c) the application; (d) references to more detailed

Dr. Uri Zernik
General Electric - Research and Development Center
PO Box 8
Schenectady, NY 12301

For further details, please call or email:
(518) 387-5370