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Wall Street Journal: Apple to Use Intel Chips
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pliny
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May 23, 2005, 08:08 AM
 
Not sure what to make of this one. Maybe they will use Intel chips in some new systems? But that would require a recompile of the OS and new versions of all applications. Seems like alot to ask of developers.

The rumor that won't go away.

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Apple considering using Intel chips on Macs: WSJ (AAPL, INTC, IBM, MOT)

 By Steve Goldstein
LONDON (MarketWatch) -- Apple Computer Inc. (AAPL) is considering using chips made by Intel Corp. (INTC) in its Macintosh computer line, The Wall Street Journal said Monday, citing industry sources. Two industry executives with knowledge of recent discussions between the companies said Apple will agree to use Intel chips, the report said. Neither company would confirm any change in their relationship. It's unclear what the impact would be on International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) , its longtime supplier, the report added.
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May 23, 2005, 08:14 AM
 
Lame. Who is the source, Endearle? It's really annoying when general authoritative sources display their narrow ignorance while passing it off as news.

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May 23, 2005, 08:41 AM
 
     
Zubir
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May 23, 2005, 09:46 AM
 
Intel's saturation of the IT psyche amazes me. To this day, even though AMD has faster, and cheaper chips, I know people who won't have anything without an Intel chip in it. Maybe Intel has the capital to take a loss, and sell cheaper in bulk that AMD?
     
chris v
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May 23, 2005, 11:33 AM
 
Oh, what the crap? Is Apple beleaguered again?

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The Ancient One
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May 23, 2005, 11:53 AM
 
While I have always thought that a switch to Intel chips was a poor idea, I put my wallet away when I saw the latest Power Macs. Although I hate to admit it, it... may... just... be... time... AAAUUUGGGHHH!!!!! Damn! that HURT!
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darwin23
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May 23, 2005, 12:12 PM
 
Sure, Apple could Rewrite/Compile ALL it's software to Run on these new Intel(x86) Mac's. While at the same time Updating the PPC code.

Then write a BIG check to 3rd party SoftWare Co.'s to get them to do the same, rather than just dump the Apps.

Next, all the fools who Paid for x86 Mac's could all go out and buy new software to replace the software they own now.

This is pure BS, Apple talks to Intel all the time about other Chips/Tech they make. I'd say they were talking to them about PCI-E and how to employ it with PPC/OpenFirmware and some hack who had no clue what these talks were about jumped to the conclusion ..........Apple Must be going x86 because Intel RuLZs.

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Don Pickett
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May 23, 2005, 12:46 PM
 
Considering that the WSJ regularly gets basic economic concepts wrong, I wouldn't worry.
     
sideus
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May 23, 2005, 12:48 PM
 
Who keeps digging up this dead horse? The WSJ article is sooooo 1996.

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sideus
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May 23, 2005, 12:58 PM
 
And who is too say Apple is talking to Intel about something other than CPUs? Maybe they are working together on a new USB, ethernet, firewire or something else.
     
dreilly1
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May 23, 2005, 01:17 PM
 
Intel maks more than just microprocessors. Apple could be agreeing to buy ethernet chips, or flash RAM for the iPod.

I think that the headline is giving the stock a boost, though, so I'm not complaining.

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mfessenden
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May 23, 2005, 01:31 PM
 
No one said that they were planning on moving the Power Mac line to Intel. That would just be silly. Hell, we just survived the transition to OSX from OS9... if Apple made us struggle with another huge transition like this, they'd probably lose most of their customer base. Has anyone considered the XServe line?

It's pretty well known in tech circles (and I think reported on a few news sites) fact that several major PC vendors are openly in talks with Apple about bringing OSX Server to their hardware. They can offer Apple the kind of standardization that OSX needs on the PC side, and are very interested in having an alternative to Windows Server.

There is a huge market out there for better UNIX-based server software. Linux is gaining popularity against Microsoft in the web server market, but can be horrendously hard to set up and maintain. OSX Server is a fantastic product, but many companies (like mine) have gone Linux solely because for the price of an XServe, you can find x86 blade servers for about half the price. Getting PHP apps running under Linux can take a network administrator months to finetune. Imagine being able to run a few installers and have everything done?

So perhaps Apple is making a play for the server market with cheaper x86 XServes and OSX...
     
polendo
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May 23, 2005, 02:03 PM
 
I think if Apple brings its OS X to x86 it will benefit them more than hurt them. Simply put a great OS into the highest share of personal computers. The economic potential is enormous.. right now. It would be amazing to use the existing hardware from pc vendors on Apple's software. It's true that there are crappy PC hardware vendors, but there are also lots of quality ones.
     
jcadam
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May 23, 2005, 02:11 PM
 
Hah! I think even Intel wants to let the x86 die. They jumped to a completely new architecture with the 64-bit Itanium (I believe in the beginning they eventually wanted to migrate mainstream PCs to the new architecture also). They were pissed as hell when AMD developed x86-64, I think they were under the impression that they could bury the x86 at the conclusion of the 32-bit era.

I wonder what sort of computers would be around today if the IBM engineers who designed the original IBM PC had been allowed to use the Motorola 68000 like they had wanted to. The 68k line would have evolved into a much sweeter processor than the 8086 did.


P.S. I'm sitting here with a proper 64-bit processor (well, two of them ) based on a modern architecture (PowerPC). Why should I be jealous of an ancient microprocessor that has been extended to 64-bit for no other good reason than to provide backward compatibility to a 32-bit architecture that was extended from a 16-bit architecture for the same reason? x86 is like a $2 crack whore that has been in business since the 1970s, while PowerPC is like a high class escort in her prime. Sure, the former has more customers, but only because she's cheap.
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sideus
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May 23, 2005, 02:23 PM
 
Could you imagine the driver nightmare Apple would have to endure if a x86 version of OS X were released?
     
Agent Macintosh
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May 23, 2005, 05:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by sideus
Could you imagine the driver nightmare Apple would have to endure if a x86 version of OS X were released?
...and the viruses/spyware/trojans/hackers/etc.!!! Even though I know OS X is very secure, if Apple increases the user base by making OS X for x86, more people will try to hack into it/write viruses for it. But, OS X is probably secure enough to handle that.


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VValdo
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May 23, 2005, 06:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by Agent Macintosh
...and the viruses/spyware/trojans/hackers/etc.!!! Even though I know OS X is very secure, if Apple increases the user base by making OS X for x86, more people will try to hack into it/write viruses for it. But, OS X is probably secure enough to handle that.
I don't think viruses/spyware/trojans/hackers will really be affected by the chips the OS is running on (although didn't AMD try to market some kind of anti-virus technology on their Athalons?). Security holes are inherent in the software side of things, pretty much. (not counting computers left physically unsecured, drawing around the edge of a CD with a magic marker, etc.)

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May 23, 2005, 07:19 PM
 
I think perhaps Apple might be looking at Intel chips for some future product, like in the way Airport base stations use AMD embedded processors. Even the original graphite Airport base station ran a custom OS on an AMD 486-based processor.

Using Intel processors on a Mac ain't going to happen. IF Apple had wanted to, the best/only time to have done it was when the move was made from OS 9 to OS X. It would be virtually impossible to do now.
     
MacGallant
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May 23, 2005, 10:23 PM
 
I forgot which forum I read it from, but a guy speculated that Apple approached Intel to design a PPC that would equal or surpass IBM's PPC in performance and that Intel itself wanted to end the x86 line of chips for a while now.
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May 24, 2005, 03:57 AM
 
Someone on slashdot claimed to have contacted the wsj and the reporter confirmed that the story was about Intel CPUs.

I can't imagine Apple suddenly ditching IBM (or Freescale, i.e. Motorola who make the Powerbook, iBook and Mini G4s), because that would be an enormous upset to their current customers. And I don't think Intel could develop PPC designs without a license from IBM, since IBM jointly holds patents on the design. Unless Apple had some extremely good on the fly recompilation software, which could recompile PPC code to x86, like Digital had with it's Alpha chips back in the WinNT 4 days it would entail having to rebuy all the software you have. You could run x86 code in emulation mode on the Alpha, and the FX32 software would recompile the binary to Alpha code on the fly. A friend of mine had an Alpha and it all worked quite well.

I just don't see x86 fitting into Apple's plans unless Apple either wants the XScale series of embedded CPUs for some powerful small device (This is the most probable, since Apple needs someone that can make a chip to decode H.264 video stream on the fly, for its upcoming video airport express)

Unless Apple is about to launch a series of x86 machines next to its PPC line up. But considering that PPC in its various forms (Cell in PS3, Stripped down PPC970 in XBox 360 etc) is all the rage at the moment, I doubt that would happen.

In any case, all we can do is speculate. Apple will do what it will do. The world will carry on and the sun will rise again tomorrow.
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blackwind
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May 24, 2005, 08:06 AM
 
It could be possible for Apple to be talking to Intel for a backup plan in case IBM decides to ignore Apple (as the market for Macs is small compared to PS3, the Xbox, and Nintendo's Revolution console). According to Apple, Apple began developing the PowerPC 970 alongside IBM during the G4 fiasco when all things Motorola did not look promising.

In the current scheme of things, however, it is unlikely for Apple to ditch the PowerPC. Apple might be a little worried about even IBM allowing the PowerPC line to flounder somewhat, but the PowerPC 970FX is still reasonably competitive with its single-core competition (2.7-GHz G5 versus a 2.6-GHz Opteron or Athlon 64, for example). Thankfully, the dual-core competition tends to be expensive, so Apple should be okay for the next little while.

Additionally, everyone knows that a quad-core Power Mac using the dual-core PowerPC 970MP is in development, so Apple is not in a bind like they were with the G4 (yet).

Still, one cannot blame Apple for starting talks in order to have a contingency plan. If Apple did not make plans with IBM and instead hoped that Motorola's vaporware PowerPC 8500 (the "Motorola G5") would come out, where would we be now?
     
Leonard
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May 24, 2005, 10:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by polendo
I think if Apple brings its OS X to x86 it will benefit them more than hurt them. Simply put a great OS into the highest share of personal computers. The economic potential is enormous.. right now. It would be amazing to use the existing hardware from pc vendors on Apple's software. It's true that there are crappy PC hardware vendors, but there are also lots of quality ones.
You're obviously not looking at the WHOLE equation if you think that. All the 3rd party developers would have to recompile and partially recode their applications for a new hardware platform for OS X and what for, Windows already exists on that platform. The 3rd party developers would just tell all users to jump ship to Windows. Say bye-bye to OS X.

OS X would also require additional code and drivers if it was to run on the existing x86 systems out there as there is a ton of variety in the hardware out there. In otherwords if it wasn't a closed x86 hardware platform that was sold by Apple alone, it would require alot of work on Apple's part to update OS X.

In otherwords, it's not feasible, and never will be for OS X to run on the existing x86 hardware.

People are just reading more into this rumor than there really is, Apple uses Intel chips in one or two of their current products and were meeting to discuss that. Or maybe Apple is discussing the USB or wireless USB standard with Intel.
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Leighla
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May 26, 2005, 07:23 AM
 
Boy, I for one would love it if they incorporated Mac OS for Intel specifically for laptop. They are so expensive! As for my Quicksilver, I love it the way it is! Leighla
     
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May 26, 2005, 10:17 AM
 
For some reason I wouldn't think less of Apple for having talks with AMD. Intel on the other hand makes me shudder.
     
polendo
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May 26, 2005, 10:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by Leonard
You're obviously not looking at the WHOLE equation if you think that. All the 3rd party developers would have to recompile and partially recode their applications for a new hardware platform for OS X and what for, Windows already exists on that platform. The 3rd party developers would just tell all users to jump ship to Windows. Say bye-bye to OS X.

OS X would also require additional code and drivers if it was to run on the existing x86 systems out there as there is a ton of variety in the hardware out there. In otherwords if it wasn't a closed x86 hardware platform that was sold by Apple alone, it would require alot of work on Apple's part to update OS X.

In otherwords, it's not feasible, and never will be for OS X to run on the existing x86 hardware.

People are just reading more into this rumor than there really is, Apple uses Intel chips in one or two of their current products and were meeting to discuss that. Or maybe Apple is discussing the USB or wireless USB standard with Intel.
Leonard,

From a technical point of view I have no idea what is required for the third party developers to make it stick. But from an economics point of view I think Apple could sell a whole lot of OS X's because:

1. Its a really good product . It's security is reliable, even though not perfect, is close to it.
2. Its competitors have a fragile product which has caused enormous headaches to too many people and of course they have lost money because their lack of refinement.
3. Apple would have access to too way many PC's... more than they could have dreamed of to sell their OSX. And this is the best business since Apple would sell a DVD worth cents to the dollar (of course you would have to take care of the investment made on the development of it -but so is also the hardware) and charge a premium on it.

MS created its empire selling Windows. I will be damned if Apple couldn't recreate that model with a better product with a cheaper sticker price.

And now.. to the 3rd party developers, I'm sure if you tell them that in order to stay in business they will need to recode their whole stuff and it will cost them millions to do so, lots of them will jump of ship.. but when you tell them that they will have access to a market that is worth more than 1000% than their previous one they will think twice.

That's my take on this matter, have a good day,
     
Leonard
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May 26, 2005, 01:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by polendo
Leonard,

From a technical point of view I have no idea what is required for the third party developers to make it stick. But from an economics point of view I think Apple could sell a whole lot of OS X's because:

1. Its a really good product . It's security is reliable, even though not perfect, is close to it.
Then why can't they sell it to these people on their own equipment? And don't give me the PC hardware is cheaper crap. It's not.

Originally Posted by polendo
2. Its competitors have a fragile product which has caused enormous headaches to too many people and of course they have lost money because their lack of refinement.
Ditto my answer for #1. Plus expanding OS X to a non-standard platform like the PC platform could make OS X less stable. Throw in all that 3rd party junk and drivers and that's where you have a mess.


Originally Posted by polendo
3. Apple would have access to too way many PC's... more than they could have dreamed of to sell their OSX. And this is the best business since Apple would sell a DVD worth cents to the dollar (of course you would have to take care of the investment made on the development of it -but so is also the hardware) and charge a premium on it.

MS created its empire selling Windows. I will be damned if Apple couldn't recreate that model with a better product with a cheaper sticker price.

And now.. to the 3rd party developers, I'm sure if you tell them that in order to stay in business they will need to recode their whole stuff and it will cost them millions to do so, lots of them will jump of ship.. but when you tell them that they will have access to a market that is worth more than 1000% than their previous one they will think twice.

That's my take on this matter, have a good day,
You're dreaming.

The real problem is Windows dug it's way in and has big roots in the industry. Once something has laid roots that big and becomes a standard, good or bad, it'll take years to tear it out. Remember the good ol VHS and Beta war?

You're also assuming Apple is going to open OS X up to every PC and not keep it closed to the PCs Apple produce. Apple would be way smarter keeping OS X tied to the PCs it produces, just like it's tied to the PowerPC computers Apple produces. Other companies produce PowerPC computers, but in no way will Apple ever allow you to run OS X on any other computer.
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polendo
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May 26, 2005, 04:25 PM
 
Leonard,

Somehow I don't understand some of your points.

Anyway, yes I'm assuming OS X will be open to any (relatively speaking) modern PC... otherwise a switch from Mac hardware to PC hardware wont be attractive at all because it will going to be restrictive (market wise) all over again. If Apple , hypotetically speaking, would make OS X to work only on their own PC hardware then you are absolutely correct.. there is nothing of value go that way.
     
Leonard
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May 27, 2005, 09:37 AM
 
What I was trying to get at and probably wasn't clear in my post, is that you were saying that the benefits of OS X are that it's security is great and that it's reliable and not fragile like every one else's product. Well I think a lot of OS X's stability has to do with the closed hardware platform it's on and the hardware standard Apple has tried to maintain. A lot of developers compare the Apple hardware platform to a almost a console environment - you don't have too much variability in hardware. You take OS X and expand it to a non-standard open hardware platform like the PC platform with it's different BIOSes, thousands of motherboards, more variation in graphics cards, etc. and it may just be as unreliable. A Mac is NOT just OS X, but the integration of OS X with the hardware and the design of the hardware.
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jcadam
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May 27, 2005, 03:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by Leonard
... A Mac is NOT just OS X, but the integration of OS X with the hardware and the design of the hardware.


Though I think OS X-x86 would still be more stable than Windows (Linux is, after all), you have to look at a few things:

1. Microsoft doesn't need to worry too much about developing hardware drivers. Third party developers that want to sell their products have no choice but to do that work themselves. Non-majority Operating Systems like Linux don't have that luxury.

2. Windows is THE gaming OS. This is now probably more responsible for Windows dominance in the Consumer PC market than any other factor.

3. Windows is THE corporate OS. There is so much money sunk into MS subscriptions and contracts by businesses and government agencies (that SHOULD care about security) that they can't afford to switch to anything else. This is the reason Windows will continue to dominate in this area also. Many businesses now want to switch but cannot.

My personal feeling is that OS X-x86 would probably compete more with Linux than Windows. Not a big market at all
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polendo
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May 27, 2005, 05:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by Leonard
A Mac is NOT just OS X, but the integration of OS X with the hardware and the design of the hardware.
I do have to agree with that. Didn't thought of that at the beginning,

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ZXspectrum
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May 28, 2005, 12:00 PM
 
never going to happen. the answer is more simple then you think.

they do do that for 2 reasons :

1. getting a better deal from IBM
2. AAPL - getting the stock up (went up 5% the same day!)


BTW - imagine calling adobe and telling them - hi will you please port PS again..right
     
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May 28, 2005, 09:05 PM
 
Maybe they are looking for processors to the iPod or the portable market. Maybe Steve just like hunging out with Intel CEO, they play games, share music, go watching movies... Maybe Steve wants to make IBM CEO jealous.
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May 28, 2005, 09:19 PM
 
$$$
     
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May 29, 2005, 01:13 AM
 
Intel makes xscale and other PDA/consumer chips. With the ongoing (forever) rumours of a new Apple PDA or Tablet, an exscale might fit the bill. No doubt the OS on such a device would have to be 'stripped down' from OS X or entirely new thus recompiling should be easy enough for such a processor no? I have no technical experience so I am really just asking here

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May 29, 2005, 01:50 AM
 
OK folks, take a deep breath... here goes:

Your Mac, the very one you're using right now ALREADY HAS INTEL CHIPS IN IT.

OK, for sure it doesn't use an Intel chip as the main CPU, but there are Intel chips on it for sure. It might be the ethernet controller, or maybe the PCI controller chipset, or maybe the Bluetooth chip, or the ATA controller, but trust me, there are Intel chips in there somewhere.

There's nothing in this article that talks about Apple using Intel as a main CPU in a future Mac.

Could it happen? maybe? Could it be posturing by Apple to pressurize Freescale and IBM? sure. Could it be some new market defining device (such as what the iPod did four years ago)? maybe. Could it just be buzz marketing to get Apple on the lips of the market makers? Absolutely.
     
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May 29, 2005, 03:02 PM
 
http://www.everymac.com/systems/appl...uadra_610.html The time might be right to bring back this idea. Space saving and less expensive than another machine hooked up to a kvm switch. Any thoughts.
     
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May 29, 2005, 04:04 PM
 
Remember that Intel not only make x86, they made other types also. May be some patents from IBM but I don't see like a big problem for them to make a PPC chip. You also have to remember that Mac's have became very "pc's" like in their hardware (HD, memory, etc), so, another part is not a big issue. The way to manage internal data is not so different now, compare with another kind of machine. But, among with tech specs, we must not loose the horizon. The only people who will win in this are us, because if they use or not Intel proc's, we will get machines better and cheaper
     
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May 29, 2005, 04:48 PM
 
Theolein: Unless Apple is about to launch a series of x86 machines next to its PPC line up. But considering that PPC in its various forms (Cell in PS3, Stripped down PPC970 in XBox 360 etc) is all the rage at the moment, I doubt that would happen.
I was just about to say that. If even Microsoft are using IBM PPC chips for their XBox and going to as much bother to get away from X86 that they may even have to use the emulation technology they got from Connectix to run old XBox games (or risk the catastrophe of no backwards compatibility), I see no reason why Apple would go the other way. What we should hope for is that one day the cell will be released for desktops and those be bundled with Macs. How many teraflops would you like with your next Mac? Um, at least 2 please.

I think what Apple really need too is software optimisation. I see graphics cards on PCs that run programs faster than their Mac equivalent so either the drivers are slow or the games are not optimised properly - this is the case with a lot of games because they are ported over. The Doom 3 benchmarks show this up with the Radeon X800 on Mac showing about half the fps that the PC showed. Has anyone noticed significant improvements with the new auto-vectorisation in Xcode under Tiger?
     
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May 29, 2005, 05:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by Panther breath
http://www.everymac.com/systems/appl...uadra_610.html The time might be right to bring back this idea. Space saving and less expensive than another machine hooked up to a kvm switch. Any thoughts.
Those were fun. I had a 6100 with a DOS compatibility card. But even cooler were the OrangePC cards.

I had an OrangePC 660 with a 400MHz K6-2 and 256MB of RAM. It sat in my PCI slot in my G3. It was awesome. You had the option of running it in a window on your Mac, or you could connect a separate monitor.

They were a bit expensive, but more space saving than having a whole PC. Plus the "cool" factor was off the top.

I understand why they stopped making them, it really was cheaper to just buy a PC. But I remember watching the beta demos of the new software at Macworld. They had all these ideas of working with SoftWindows. The one major thing the OrangePC card lacked was any real integration with the Mac desktop. You couldn't just drag and drop files like in SoftWindows and VPC, you had to make a "share" folder and transfer files that way.

I'm tempted to pick one up again and stick it in my old G3.
"…I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than
you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods,
you will understand why I dismiss yours." - Stephen F. Roberts
     
Leonard
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May 30, 2005, 02:46 PM
 
Originally Posted by Camelot
OK folks, take a deep breath... here goes:

Your Mac, the very one you're using right now ALREADY HAS INTEL CHIPS IN IT.

OK, for sure it doesn't use an Intel chip as the main CPU, but there are Intel chips on it for sure. It might be the ethernet controller, or maybe the PCI controller chipset, or maybe the Bluetooth chip, or the ATA controller, but trust me, there are Intel chips in there somewhere.
OH NOOOOO! Say it ain't so! Where is that darn Intel chip!?! I'm gonna tear it out! Give me a needle-nose pliers...
.
.
.
.

just kidding. Yeah I'm sure there is an Intel chip in there (maybe the USB2 controller?) or two as well as AMD chips. No biggie.
Mac Pro Dual 3.0 Dual-Core
MacBook Pro
     
hakstooy
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Jun 3, 2005, 09:28 PM
 
Well, cnet just confirmed it. Now this one I didn't see coming. I mean, yeah the PowerPC is lacking in some respects (especially in the mobile market) but I would certainly think that IBM has more potential long-term.
     
Kerrigan
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Jun 3, 2005, 10:27 PM
 
yup
     
polendo
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Jun 3, 2005, 10:32 PM
 
So Leonard.. shall we start again talking about the Intel possibilities hahah j/k. This is getting interesting by the minute.
     
hayesk
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Jun 4, 2005, 12:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by hakstooy
Well, cnet just confirmed it. Now this one I didn't see coming. I mean, yeah the PowerPC is lacking in some respects (especially in the mobile market) but I would certainly think that IBM has more potential long-term.
cnet confirmed it? Ha ha! That's very funny.
     
JoshuaZ
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Jun 4, 2005, 01:01 AM
 
We're still beating this dead horse? WTF?
     
sideus
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Jun 4, 2005, 01:08 AM
 
     
dsteinman
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Jun 4, 2005, 01:17 AM
 
From what I have read, IBM has had problems in the delivery of sufficient quantities of G5s CPUs to Apple. Now that Darth Bill is using the same CPU in the new Xbox, which is very likely to be a high volume box, what will this do to the G5 supply that Apple is going to need? That in itself might be sufficient for Apple to consider a jump. Freescale is probably going to remain focused on the embedded market where they currently have a strong market share.
     
MindFad
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Jun 4, 2005, 01:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by sideus
Best. Tree. Stamping. Ever.
     
turtle777
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Jun 4, 2005, 11:15 AM
 
Wow, a horse pinata ! Filled with Intel processors. Cool !

-t
     
BasketofPuppies
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Jun 5, 2005, 02:59 AM
 
Originally Posted by Agent Macintosh
But, OS X is probably secure enough to handle that.
You keep telling yourself that.
inscrutable impenetrable impregnable inconceivable
     
 
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