The Wall

October 14, 2004 at 8:37 pm | Posted in Technology | Leave a comment

I remember a Macworld conference over 10 years ago when the PowerPC alliance said that Intel would hit a brick wall with their x86 architecture and that would allow PowerPC to race ahead of Intel and win the desktop wars. I still have the binder of all that wishful thinking.

The only problem was that they didn’t tell us how long that war would last, nor did we know that the PowerPC camp would lose one of its members, that another member would be constantly harassed by the “Megahertz Myth”, or that we would get help from another company fighting Intel on a separate front.

Gentlemen, we have arrived at that point:

Intel Nixes Plans for 4-Gigahertz Pentium.

The comment below delves into more detail how Intel got themselves into this mess, which was by over-emphasizing Marketing over Engineering and putting all their eggs in one basket..

Intel the cause of it’s own problems

The PowerPC alliance, along with AMD, can finally stomp on Intel once and for all if the following two things happen:

  1. Both PowerPC and AMD quickly ramp up their chip speeds before Intel Marketing has a chance to dilute and reverse the lie they have foisted on the mass market that Megahertz Is Everything. If they can get their chips to 3.5-4.0 GHz, then the playing field will be even and the market message of PowerPC, AMD, and Intel will be the same – that Megahertz is not a good criteria of CPU performance. This can only favor the PowerPC and Opteron architectures.
  2. Intel is unable to turn their Megahertz-oriented engineering efforts in time to prevent a significant migration to better designed platforms (Macintosh) or cheaper platforms (AMD 64-bit + HyperTransport). All the more so if Intel decides to continue to identify itself with the security nightmare that is Windows.

Stick the knife in and turn slowly. Muuuuuaaaahhhhh.

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