One reader reports:
- I work in IT for a large corporation and IBM gave us a presentation about the future of their pSeries and other systems today. Part of the presentation was about the Power processors. They talked about the Power 4, 4+, 5 and 5+. They also briefly discussed the blade servers running what they had listed as the Power 970. They mentioned the Vector unit but said it would not be used in their blade servers, it was for something else. I later asked the rep if the 970 was going to be sold to Apple and he said yes. He was sure of this, and seemed surprised that I knew anything about it. He said they (Apple) have them in their labs now, and that they plan to release them. He said the Vector unit (altivec) was for Apple and that IBM has been told to caution their customers that they have no plans to implement it in their Linux servers, or AIX versions of the blade servers. I told him I heard that Linux may support it in the future, but he wasn't sure about that. He said the Blades would be available Q3 but didn't know when Apple would release them. I later asked if the Blades would out before Macs and he didn't know. So it's possible we could see a 970 Mac at least as soon as the Blades come out, which would fit in with the timelines we've been hearing elsewhere.
Another interesting thing he talked about was the work they were doing on the Playstation 3. He said it was going to be a dual core chip, but one core would be graphics. He also said they were implementing something with a company called (or a technology called) Blossom that was a grid computing system for the PS3. It had something to do with multiplayer gaming, but allowed the processing power to be shared, at least part of it, on the grid. Then I remembered Apples XGrid trademark. I would say it's a safe bet that Apple intends to incorporate that sort of technology into future XServes.
Q3 Target date for the Blade's mean that IBM is on target with their 970 timetable.