SGI, oh SGI…what has become of you….

I just read about SGI’s demise over on GigaOm. It seems Rackable has scooped them up for a measly 25 million. This is just depressing.

Back in the day I was infatuated with SGI. For hardcore geeks they were cool before Apple was cool, again. I wanted an O2 so bad I could taste it. I was ready to squander every penny we had (not too many of them I might add) to get one even though I had no idea how to use Irix. When I was at ERAU I had a friend in the CS program. They were working on SGI’s (early 90’s Octanes I think) to create an air traffic control simulator. The graphics capabilities of the SGI’s at that time were unrivaled. When I got into Computers professionally I signed up for SGI’s marketing list and got to go to several events including a screening of Jurassic Park. Of course, I asked a million questions and drooled all over the demo units.

When HP started coming out with some powerful graphics workstations I remember thinking that was the beginning of the end. Around the same time SGI decided to introduce some Windows NT models. I really knew it was the end then.

To look at SGI’s product line today, they still have the same aesthetic on the hardware but aside from some nice cases there’s not much sexy about them any more. They don’t sell any workstations as far as I can tell either. They long ago sold off the software assets that were cool. Today they seem like just another storage vendor.

It’s like a portion of my youth has died.

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