Talk:Advanced Telecommunications Computing Architecture

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ATCA is the new chassis to replace CompactPCI. As a standard PC user, it's nothing to be concerned with, you will never see it. It is not a "peripheral interconnect" as the unsigned edit below asks.

Additionally, I have cleaned out the main article since it was just a 'comparison'. Original text:

 ==Arguments in favor of ATCA==
 Proponents of ATCA and similar industry initiatives argue that by creating a flexible standard architecture that will serve the needs of many VARs (see value-added reseller), economies of scale can be achieved in the manufacture of the components of ATCA systems. In addition, most hardware and even most system software can be provided by the OEMs (see OEM). This should allow the VAR to provide a better product because it can now focus its (presumably limited) resources on those aspects of the product that differentiate it from its competitors. Since the differentiating aspects naturally center around the VAR's area of expertise, this approach creates a better product. This effect is amplified by the fact that the hardware and system software are created by the specialized OEM(s), which are experts in those specialties.  
 The oft-cited example is the massive PC industry, which has managed to create and evolve a standard platform for 25 years, supporting many low cost solutions as well as premium solutions. Device manufacturers, firmware vendors, OS vendors, system designers, add-on manufacturers, and software vendors have existed in a competitive ecology, and the consumer has benefited, because PC-based solutions are inexpensive and universal. 
 ==Arguments against ATCA==
 In order to create an architecture generalized enough to appeal to all the VARs and end-users, or at least a significant percentage of them, the cost of a system based on that architecture naturally increases. This means that for any given application, a lower-cost solution can usually be created by meeting only the actual requirements at hand. This means that there is a natural price increase experienced when using a standards-based hardware platform, and the economies of scale need to be significant to overcome this. 
 Certainly the PC industry has seen the economies of scale defeat the generality penalty. But the precursor to ATCA, CompactPCI, did not see economies of scale triumph over the generality penalty, and so solutions based on proprietary hardware continue to be the norm in the telecommunications industry. The network of technology providers that exists for ATCA does not compare to the PC industry in terms of size or number of players, so the outcome of the ATCA effort seems more likely to resemble the CompactPCI space, not the PC space.
 The extent to which the ATCA vendors' offerings play together is unknown, but suspect based on reading the available documentation. It seems doubtful that any VAR could create a product based on ATCA technology that met the operational requirements of telecommunications carriers, because too many integration problems would be visible to the network operators.
 Both of these objections to the viability of ATCA are only valid given that the effort is in its infancy. Sustained commitment on the part of the players in PICMG and related forums should be able to overcome all these obstacles in time.

-- RevRagnarok 03:05, 2 May 2006 (UTC)


I came to this page expecting a compare and contrast between ATCA and CompactPCI, and instead got this ambiguous overview that barely ackowledges that ATCA is a peripheral interconnect standard. Maybe it's the case that ATCA is an overview standard, and the refering page sets up an unrealistic expectation of what one would find here.

This article should answer these questions:

1. What is ATCA? What problem does it solve?
2. How is it different from CompactPCI?
3. Who is expected to use it; who uses it now?
4. What are the specifications?
5. What does the connector look like, if these specifications exist?

Wikipedia Article or Sale Pitch?[edit]

What is this, information or a sales pitch copied from some other website? -- 145.254.146.27 17:51, 23 July 2006 (UTC)

No, if you were to look at the history it was obviously not just copy and paste. It's not a sales pitch because there is no seller. It's the next generation of industrial computing. If you are not familiar with the field, let's put it this way - it's a standard from the same folks who came up with PCI, which is the bus used inside almost every desktop out there today. — RevRagnarok Talk Contrib 18:03, 23 July 2006 (UTC)
I've since learned I was wrong, PCI /= PICMG. However, many industrial systems that use PCI (like inside your computer, but now I am only talking about the protocol not the specific bus) use CompactPCI which is PICMG. It's very confusing... — RevRagnarok Talk Contrib 18:16, 14 August 2006 (UTC)