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Old Nov 21, 2002, 07:04 PM   #1
mystixman
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Thumbs up So, about new products....

Hi all,

I have a few questions and comments, the first of which is about any new hardware.

There have been many rumors about Apple switching from Motorola to either IBM or AMD. Which is a better choice? Will a switch to AMD make the Apple more "PC".

Will the iPod be updated at MWSF03? If so, what are the rumors so far?

Also, any details on updated or new iApps?
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Old Nov 21, 2002, 08:02 PM   #2
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If you do a little searching around the forums, you can get all the answers to your questions. As for the Apple being more like a PC - not really, since the OS would still be Mac and it would run all the same apps and iApps. Basically you've asked an interesting question - What is/makes a Mac? Should probably be in the philisophical thread....

D
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Old Nov 21, 2002, 08:47 PM   #3
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IBM already makes the G3 chip that is powering the machine I am writing this message with. Motorola makes the G4 and the G5, if it ever launches

The discussion about IBM is whether Apple will start using IBM's upcoming 970 processor. I think it's fine to have multiple CPU vendors. Even in the PC world they have Intel, AMD, and Transmeta. The thing is, in order for CPU vendors to be interchangeable, they have to support the same instruction set. Therefore, there's no way Apple will use both x86 and PPC chips. They have to choose one or the other, and as mentioned in another, thread, there's no wayy apple will alienate all their customers and partners by switching to a whole new architecture, especially when they just made a huge shift to OSX, and promising G5, G6, and 970 chips are just on the horizon.

Personally, I think Apple should definitely stay the course with the PPC. The next few months are going to be rough for Apple from a marketing point of view if Moto and IBM don't come through with new chips, but after that I think they'll be cruising. OS X performance should continue to improve, and with even faster chips the interface will be super-responsive. I mean, how fast does a computer need to be?

Personally, I think Apple is well positioned for the maturation stage of the PC market. It's like the early days of the auto industry. After almost every household already had a Model T Ford, and cars were already as fast, as big, and as cheap as they needed to be, then car makers had to start competing on features and design. Ford had a seemingly insurmountable market share lead selling their boring, generic Model T, until GM with its innovative designs and varied product lines started eroding Ford's market share, eventually overtaking it completely.

Since Apple has proven again and again that it has tremendous strength in product design, I would say it's in great shape for the future. Keep in mind the PPC chips help Apple add features to its computers: long battery life, low heat dissipation, quiet (or non-existent) fan. With $4 Billion in cash reserves, a sterling (and strengthening) reputation for innovation and product quality, and great new chips on the horizon, Apple can afford to ride out these rough spots and look toward a much brighter future.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 12:14 AM   #4
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While I admit that I prefer the PPC to any x86 (so far), Apple doesn't have to alienate its customers if they were to make an architecture switch. It worked just fine when they went form 68K to PPC, thanks to magic of a well designed emulator.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 08:47 AM   #5
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Originally posted by crazy_will
While I admit that I prefer the PPC to any x86 (so far), Apple doesn't have to alienate its customers if they were to make an architecture switch. It worked just fine when they went form 68K to PPC, thanks to magic of a well designed emulator.
Emulation does not work by magic. Apple chose the PowerPC as its RISC processor because the POWER instruction set is well-suited for emulation. Had emulation not been a consideration, Apple likely would have chosen Motorola's competing RISC processor, the 88000. The 88000 was the CPU used in Data General's AViiON mid-range family. IIRC, NeXT was on the verge is switching to the 88000 (or has switched, already) when it dropped its hardware business. The Intel instruction set makes a very poor choice for emulation.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 01:55 PM   #6
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Emulation does not work by magic. Apple chose the PowerPC as its RISC processor because the POWER instruction set is well-suited for emulation. Had emulation not been a consideration, Apple likely would have chosen Motorola's competing RISC processor, the 88000. The 88000 was the CPU used in Data General's AViiON mid-range family. IIRC, NeXT was on the verge is switching to the 88000 (or has switched, already) when it dropped its hardware business. The Intel instruction set makes a very poor choice for emulation.
My choice of the word "magic" was ment to be as a figure of speech. I am aware of how an emulator works.

And if am not mistaken, the emulation wasn't hardware based, it was software based. How that would be effected by the X86 instruction set is beyond me. Anyone up to explain it?
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 06:44 PM   #7
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New Cattle Products

Mystixman raises some good questions. It's kind of funny that the changes that are the cause of confused excitement in the manufacturing of non-RISC chips are nothing compared to the Reduced Instruction Set Computers/Chips already manifest abilities. Applying the same manufacturing changes to RISC chips makes an already outlandish advantage that Apple possesses, even more ridiculous. Reducing the component size still doesn't address the fact that Apple's pipeline stage count is half of what others are generally using.

That said, if anyone can pull an iNtel or iBM bunny out of the hat, it's Apple Computer Inc.

On a side note, has anyone heard the rumor that Intel and IBM are officially changing their names to start with lowercase "i" so as to not get left in the dust by Steve Jobs?

And finally, in the first post here, mystixman's quote said "I am system 7 savvy". Of course my favorite OS is X/Jaguar, but a while ago I enjoyed system 7 as well. System 8 and 9 were really good also, but let everyone here make no mistake, BenderBot1138 thinks 7 of 9 was totally hot.

Last edited by BenderBot1138; Nov 24, 2002 at 06:51 PM.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 08:44 PM   #8
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I think it's fine to have multiple CPU vendors. Even in the PC world they have Intel, AMD, and Transmeta.
You forgot about Cyrix.

Then again, doesn't everybody?
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 09:25 PM   #9
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Transmeta usage somewhat possible

The Transmeta processors have Very Long Instruction Word language and run i386 code through software emulation. It says somewhere on their website that they could port any other assembly language. So however unlikely, if Apple wanted, Transmeta could join the PPC rankings... This is just as likely as Apple moving to AMD (wake up people, you obviously have no clue about the business world if you ever think this is even remotely possible). You'd have more luck seeing Jesus sit down with you in your living room.
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 09:42 PM   #10
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Cyrix? thank God, somebody else remembers! I had a 6x86 back in the day, and that thing FLEW! at 150MHz, it was nearly as fast as my old 433 Celeron. Cyrix, I miss you (correct me if I am wrong, but they were bought out right? was it AMD?).
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Old Nov 24, 2002, 09:42 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by solvs


You forgot about Cyrix.

Then again, doesn't everybody?
Right, or the Via C3, as their latest processor is now marketed. Walmart hasn't forgotten them, though - it's the chip in the $200 Microtel computers that they're selling. (800MHz C3, 128 MB RAM, 10 GB drive, built-in Ethernet, 52x CD-ROM, Lycoris or Lindows Linux preinstalled). How the heck can those Microtel computers be so darn cheap?!!? That's just crazy. Bundled with a $128 Microtel 17" monitor, that's a heck of a lot of computer for $328!!
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