Fishing for Gearheads, throwing bait like that in the water.
K.J. is right. Rudolph Diesel, in the mid 1890s, worked on using the inherent heat from compressing air, to ignite a fuel. After a few experiments, one explosion that almost killed him, he found a by-product of the crude oil refining process. It was cheap, plentiful, and at the time burned off as waste. He found that by atomizing, and injecting this waxy fluid into a piston compressed cylinder, as the piston neared Top Dead Center, the fuel would combust, and the engine would sustain itself, without external ignition source.
Clessie Cummins work on 4 stroke engines, in the 1930s, and turbochargers, in the 1950s, were huge coffin nails for the 2 stroke Detroits. He used the Indy 500 as his final test bed, having been on the Marmon pit crew for the first 500 in 1911, setting speed records, endurance records through the 1950s, all with diesels.
California hot rodder Clayton, speaks the truth. Hot rodders, after WWII, started pulling the superchargers off of diesels and adapting then to automotive gas burners. Even today, the size designations of Roots type, (GMC), blowers. 4-71, 6-,8-,10-, 12-, 14-71 all owe the name to the old Detroit engine displacements. The size of the supercharger was determined by case and rotor size needed to fill the given number of cylinders, 6, 8, 12, etc with 71 cubic inches of air per crank rotation.
Incidentally, the 2 stroke Detroit engines require air to be forced into them by the 'blower', in order to run at all. Being a 2 stroke design, with the intake ports in the cylinder walls themselves, they do not have a separate intake stroke, like 4 stroke, gas and diesel engines use to draw in their own air.
The most prevalent configuration, today, is the inline 6 cylinder. Early on, Cummins found out that inline engines generate more torque per cubic inch than VEE configuration engines. With a couple of notable exceptions, the V903 Cummins, and the 3408 Caterpillar, the majority of successful Truck engines are 6 poppers. The first, production engine to make 600 horsepower, was a Cummins KTA-600, a 6 cylinder. A benchmark not even the venerable 12V-71 could make.
As I try to get my inner Diesel Geek under Control, don't forget, even ALLIS - CHALMERS tried to get into the truck engine market, in the 1970s. "Big Al", as it was marketed as, looked good on paper, and even painted purple metallic, but in reality had severe crank longevity issues that made it just another also ran.
Now, consider all the different developmental series for each mark. The Detroit V-71s, V-92s, V-92 Silver, Series 60, DD 14 and DD15 versions. Cat,s 1693, 3406A, B, C, 3406E, 3408, C-15, C-16. Cummins' NTC series, KTAs, 855 series, ISX, Signature 600, just name a few.
OK, I'll stop now.