The processor and operating system technologies that made Sun Microsystems one of the first big Silicon Valley startups got their start three decades inside the computer science departments of two universities. It was Stanford University for the hardware and the University of California at Berkeley for the operating system that …
Not quite old news.
You may have heard of Sunsite?
sunsite.<dozens or hundreds of other ones>
"if they indeed ever come to market, and some days it seems doubtful, just like the early years for the Itanium"
What about the current days? Will we ever see Poulson? I doubt it. We may not even ever see Tukwila. Does Intel even take Itanium seriously anymore? At least more than one vendor is building Sparc chips. If Sun screws up (as they're wont to do), then there are several others that are there to build and pull Suns butt out of the fire (see Fujitsu).
"University of California at Berkeley for the operating system that would eventually become Solaris"
For Solaris 1.x (aka SunOS 4.x) maybe. Solaris 2.x (aka SunOS 5.x) is SysV-based, NOT BSD!
Feedback loop mistake
You can't say that things start in academia and then get commercialized; it ain't that simple. In this case, Unix didn't start at Berkely and move to Sun for commercialization as Solaris. It started at AT&T Bell Labs, and moved to Berkely and then to Sun. Admittedly, Bell Labs was a commercial version of an academic environment (RIP), like Xerox PARC.
Open microprocessors are a joke
Got $4B?...you might be able to build a SPARC chip that will participate in SPARC immediate decline