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Will Apple use another Power PC processor?

post #1 of 127
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As OSX is now capable of running on both architectures and mosr apps universal binaries, this leaves the door open to use the best of both worlds. Is it likely that say a Power 6 could be used in a high end server whilst using Intel in desktop machines?
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post #2 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Addison View Post

As OSX is now capable of running on both architectures and mosr apps universal binaries, this leaves the door open to use the best of both worlds. Is it likely that say a Power 6 could be used in a high end server whilst using Intel in desktop machines?

Definitely possible, and Apple knows well the frustration of being dependent on one platform (eg: Motorolla woes of the 90s).

That said:
--Writing new software optimized for both PPC and Intel takes more time, meaning developers are likely to make it work on PPC, and focus optimizations on Intel binary.
--Unlike Motorolla, Intel has massive PC chip sales, thus focuses tremendous R&D on the kinds of chips Apple wants.
--Unlike Motorolla, Intel has direct competion in the form of AMD, so remains diligent and aggressive re: tech improvements.
--Using Intel motherboards allows Apple to use cheaper (by volume) components. Graphics cards are an obvious win here, but the savings extend to most of the chips and hardware controllers in the systems.

From that perspective, my guess is that Apple will be fine letting PPC support fade away over time. ie: As existing PPC owners upgrade to Intel machines over the next few years.
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post #3 of 127
While never say never, my guess is that the chances are very remote as Apple was badly burned by Motorola's inability to keep the PPC chips used in the Power Macs comptetive. Job got egg on his face once by promising 3Ghz in a couple of months, which of course didn't happen, so personally I can't see him giving Moto even the time of day let alone going back to the PPC chip.
post #4 of 127
PPC is used from the embedded market to the main frame market. It has only recently lost the desktop market when Apple left.

IBM manufactures PPC products for themselves and now for Microsoft and Sony game consoles. Who knows where this will lead. It definitely will keep IBM interested in advancing their cpus and the insturction set architecture.

If I were Apple I would definitely maintain builds of Mac OSs on PPC.
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post #5 of 127
Somehow I can't imagine Steve going back to PPC... I could imagine an alternate universe where they use AMD chips before they go back with Motorola.

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post #6 of 127
I heard a mac related podcast a few weeks ago where Steve said, that initially Apple wanted to make the transition from the PPC chips to Intel in an year or maybe 1,5...but they did it in 7 months, which is very nice, and he was surprised and happy for it at the same time...so, I'm not sure about this "going back to PPC" thing...
post #7 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by imiloa View Post

Definitely possible, and Apple knows well the frustration of being dependent on one platform (eg: Motorolla woes of the 90s).


--Unlike Motorolla, Intel has direct competion in the form of AMD, so remains diligent and aggressive re: tech improvements.
-

and apple just need to make drivers for amd chip sets and boards to use there chips and they run the same x86 code as the intel chips do.
post #8 of 127


Set me straight if i have this wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by imiloa View Post


--Writing new software optimized for both PPC and Intel takes more time, meaning developers are likely to make it work on PPC, and focus optimizations on Intel binary.


I thought the point of Universal software was to write applications once and have them run well with either processor.


Quote:

--Using Intel motherboards allows Apple to use cheaper (by volume) components. Graphics cards are an obvious win here, but the savings extend to most of the chips and hardware controllers in the systems.


Chip sets yes, but I think Apple makes their own motherboards. No? By the way, according to one post I read, Apple could use Intel board by replacing the BIOS chip with Apple's propriety chip. What do you think?

post #9 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

I thought the point of Universal software was to write applications once and have them run well with either processor.:

The bulk of code can be written to compile for either PPC or Intel. But if you want to optimize low-level logic so that it runs at optimal speed, you need to code for a specific instruction set (meaning chip). eg: Photoshop filters, video codecs, etc...

Something like TextEdit doesn't require such. But most of the key Pro apps that drive the Mac use in design & production require such custom coding to run at the same speeds as their Windows counterparts.

By example, consider how long it took Adobe to release the CS3 universal binary apps. And how important that release was to both Apple and Macintel sales. ie: How many people were media pros were waiting to buy a Macintel when Photoshop et alia were universal.
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

Chip sets yes, but I think Apple makes their own motherboards. No? By the way, according to one post I read, Apple could use Intel board by replacing the BIOS chip with Apple's propriety chip. What do you think?

As I understand it, Apple used all proprietary chips in the PPC days (aside from the CPU). But at this point, there is no reason for Apple to do so, unless their proprietary tech is better than the vendor options.

Key being, economy of scale. Mac hardware has always been expensive, due to the large R&D cost per Mac sold. With Mac now using Intel chips, they can use standard PC hardware components that are manufactured in the hundreds of millions, not millions (Apple alone).

That said, I gather Apple still uses their own WiFi chips in their laptops. My point is simply that, aside from the cases, Apple's hardware costs could now rival Dell's.
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post #10 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

...

I thought the point of Universal software was to write applications once and have them run well with either processor.

...

MacOS X does not run on two lines of processors, it runs on three--at least. These are the Freescale/IBM PPC, the Intel x86, and the Intel processor used in the iPhone. The notion that Apple is going to drop MacOS X's processor-agnostic ability in favor in favor of optimized x86 builds is silly. There may be reasons for third-party commercial developers and vertical market developers to develop x86-optimized or x86-exclusive builds. For the general market, every current processor is more than fast enough to handle Universal Binaries. Apple is not going to make itself dependent on one ISA, especially while it is producing products based on several ISAs.
post #11 of 127
To answer the first post. The chance of Apple going back to a PPC Processor for any of it's products is highly unlikely. 99.99% unlikely, and that's being generous IMO because I'd say there is 0% chance of Apple using a PPC product for any of their computer products. IBM can not compete with intel when it comes to processor selection, heat, size, power, speed, etc, etc, etc... Nor did IBM take Apple seriously when Apple needed processors. They also fell through an some guarantees that made Steve Jobs, and Apple look like a horses ass. "3GHz in a year" They don't have the same R&D, and do not commit the kind of resources, and enthusiasm towards Apples needs that intel does. If Apple switched a product back to an IBM processor they may be waiting years to see an upgrade for it, and I don't think that is in their best interest. IBM is only interested in IBM.

Quote:
"I thought the point of Universal software was to write applications once and have them run well with either processor."

The reason for universal binary is to make new software compatible with legacy PPC systems. That is the only reason. THere are still more PPC based Macs out there than intel, and Apple was not going to switch processors and piss off millions of Mac users by shutting them out of all future Apple softwares.
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post #12 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by onlooker View Post


The reason for universal binary is to make new software compatible with legacy PPC systems. That is the only reason. THere are still more PPC based Macs out there than intel, and Apple was not going to switch processors and piss off millions of Mac users by shutting them out of all future Apple softwares.


I understand why Apple developed the Universal binaries. I also believe that Apple will continue to provide Universal binary development kit from now on. So, PPC code could be with us for a very long time.

post #13 of 127
Also, Apple adopted Intel so they could make more aggressive inroads into MS territory. A plan which I was sure would not work... their spectacular increase in computer sales tells me they made the right move.

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post #14 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Also, Apple adopted Intel so they could make more aggressive inroads into MS territory. A plan which I was sure would not work... their spectacular increase in computer sales tells me they made the right move.

They switched to intel because IBM was not a capable of accommodating Apples needs and didn't even try. They were incapable of making a G5 laptop processor because Apple was not big enough for them to bother. They were far too interested in pooring all their time and effort into Nvidia, Sony, and Microsofts needs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Addison

As OSX is now capable of running on both architectures and mosr apps universal binaries, this leaves the door open to use the best of both worlds. Is it likely that say a Power 6 could be used in a high end server whilst using Intel in desktop machines?

Apple never used the Power3, 4 or 5, processors when they could have, and I doubt you'll see them using the Power 6 processor for anything now. Why would they? They don't need it, and have never shown any interest in it. Plus they now have intel as partner who is trying to recapture the server market from AMD and if anyone deserves it; they deserve what little server business Apple has after the way IBM snubbed them. I highly doubt you'll see Apple with IBM again.
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post #15 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

I thought the point of Universal software was to write applications once and have them run well with either processor.

Let's not forget that OS X itself is not Universal. They have separate builds for PPC and Intel. Sooner or later, Apple will tire of devoting part of their limited development resources to the PPC code base, targeted at a customer base that can only shrink. Remember that they stopped supporting Classic, a very similar situation. I give PPC another 4-5 years before OS X 10.7 no longer supports it. At which point, no big deal, people can either just stay with the last version of the OS that works for them or they can buy new machines to replace their slow, 6+ year old antiques.
post #16 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by rickag View Post

PPC is used from the embedded market to the main frame market. It has only recently lost the desktop market when Apple left.

IBM manufactures PPC products for themselves and now for Microsoft and Sony game consoles. Who knows where this will lead. It definitely will keep IBM interested in advancing their cpus and the insturction set architecture.

If I were Apple I would definitely maintain builds of Mac OSs on PPC.

The problem is that Freescale hadn't produced a desktop chip for more than two years before Apple left.

The development of the G5 has slowed down seriously, even before Apple left.

One thing that bothered me about the PPC chips the last two to three years Apple was using them was that Intel was incorporating many features into the cpu's, controllers, and chipsets that Apple wasn't seeing with the PPC.

The chips that IBM produces for the game machines are not in the direct line of the PPC familly. Their development will have little use for the PPC's that Apple could use.

The Cell is too impossible a thought to even contemplate.

This would be costing Apple a lot to incorporate if they weren't on the Intel platform. I'm sure that was one of the reasons why they switched.

There is simply no way they could go back.

Fortunately, the x86 isn't going away.

They won't have to.
post #17 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post

MacOS X does not run on two lines of processors, it runs on three--at least. These are the Freescale/IBM PPC, the Intel x86, and the Intel processor used in the iPhone. The notion that Apple is going to drop MacOS X's processor-agnostic ability in favor in favor of optimized x86 builds is silly. There may be reasons for third-party commercial developers and vertical market developers to develop x86-optimized or x86-exclusive builds. For the general market, every current processor is more than fast enough to handle Universal Binaries. Apple is not going to make itself dependent on one ISA, especially while it is producing products based on several ISAs.

I'm willing to believe that after a while, Apple will abandon the PPC. When will this happen? When the use of a new version of the PPC version falls too far below a profitable level for Apple to continue to maintain full PPC staffing.

I think it's possible that 10.6 will be the last full PPC version. After that, they will maintain it for a while, and then drop it. If it takes two and a half years for 10.6 to arrive, then that would be almost three years from now. It seems like a reasonable timescale. By maintaining the 10.6 OS with updates, as they do now, it would be just as viable as the Intel version until 10.7 comes out, possibly another two and a half years after 10.6.

That would give the PPC version a full five and a half years of equality with the Intel version before it's totally obsoleted when 10.7 comes out.

Look at how they did it for the 68xxx and OS 9 to OS X moves.
post #18 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

Let's not forget that OS X itself is not Universal. They have separate builds for PPC and Intel. Sooner or later, Apple will tire of devoting part of their limited development resources to the PPC code base, targeted at a customer base that can only shrink. Remember that they stopped supporting Classic, a very similar situation. I give PPC another 4-5 years before OS X 10.7 no longer supports it. At which point, no big deal, people can either just stay with the last version of the OS that works for them or they can buy new machines to replace their slow, 6+ year old antiques.

Ah, I just saw your post after I made mine.

Amazing! We're thinking alike!
post #19 of 127
Neither performance nor watt where the reason for the switch. It was money, that's all. Through the switch Apple doesn't have to design their own chips, motherboards ,etc. And they don't have to pay for the cpu development. Intel does all that for Apple and they probably get a special price too. IBM can build more or less any CPU (see POWER6) you want, but you have to pay for that (like Sony, MS and Nintendo did). Apple didn't want to. As both didn't really needed each other, they seperated. Same with Freescale. Apple would use McDonalds CPUs if they thought they could make more money with them.
post #20 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

Neither performance nor watt where the reason for the switch. It was money, that's all. ...

To the man whose only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

These discussions about whether or not Apple will continue to support the PPC orbit about the desktop personal computer [and possibly, servers]. When Apple announced its switch from the PPC to Intel's processors, it said that the switch would allow it to build new and innovative products. It is now doing just that. The Apple TV is a new Apple product which is not a PC. The iPhone is a new Apple product which is not a PC or a server. Both new Apple non-PC products run MacOS X. In its heyday, OpenSTEP ran on several processors--Intel x86, Motorola 680x0, Sun SPARC, HP PA, and others. OpenSTEP's prodgeny, MacOS X, will continue to run on multiple processors because Apple will sell devices based on a wide array of processors. Whether or not one of those processors is the PowerPC is besides the point.
post #21 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Me View Post

MacOS X does not run on two lines of processors, it runs on three--at least. These are the Freescale/IBM PPC, the Intel x86, and the Intel processor used in the iPhone. The notion that Apple is going to drop MacOS X's processor-agnostic ability in favor in favor of optimized x86 builds is silly. There may be reasons for third-party commercial developers and vertical market developers to develop x86-optimized or x86-exclusive builds. For the general market, every current processor is more than fast enough to handle Universal Binaries. Apple is not going to make itself dependent on one ISA, especially while it is producing products based on several ISAs.

Last I checked they never said what the iPhone's CPU was and Intel denied having a chip in there. Whether it's Xscale or some other CPU though, it's probably using the ARM architecture.

So in order: PowerPC, x86, and ARM.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snoopy View Post

I understand why Apple developed the Universal binaries. I also believe that Apple will continue to provide Universal binary development kit from now on. So, PPC code could be with us for a very long time.


Not a very long time. 4-5 years at most. Maybe less if we're lucky.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Addison View Post

As OSX is now capable of running on both architectures and mosr apps universal binaries, this leaves the door open to use the best of both worlds. Is it likely that say a Power 6 could be used in a high end server whilst using Intel in desktop machines?

Nope. Not happening ever again, at least not in Desktops, Laptops, or Servers. If Apple makes a new electronic with OS X embedded and PPC makes sense then, that's the only chance I see for it. But even then, they could just stick with ARM or x86.

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post #22 of 127
@Mr. Me:
Sorry for my bad English capabilities but do you agree with me or not? No product released since the switch sofar is a real "child" of the switch. Everything could have been realeased in PowerPC version (maybe a little latter ). Jobs seems to be architecture agnostic. If the PPC world would offer something better for less, they are in again. Jobs didn't see this offer hence the switch.
post #23 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

@Mr. Me:
Sorry for my bad English capabilities but do you agree with me or not? No product released since the switch sofar is a real "child" of the switch. Everything could have been realeased in PowerPC version (maybe a little latter ). Jobs seems to be architecture agnostic. If the PPC world would offer something better for less, they are in again. Jobs didn't see this offer hence the switch.

Apple is a public corporation with a fiduciary responsibility to return a profit to its shareholders. But forced to make a choice, I would have to disagree with you. To be sure, Intel's standard support chips will help Apple cut costs in its production of servers, laptops, and servers. But cutting costs is not the best way to earn a profit. The best way is to create new products which create new markets. Apple is product-driven. The switch to Intel enabled products which were not possible with the PowerPC. For example, it is not possible to design a laptop based on the G5 (PPC 970). The very thought of a G5-based iPhone may cause the sick and elderly to die laughing.

There are many who believe that the switch to Intel is irrevocable. Hence, they believe, Apple will drop support for everything else and concentrate solely on the x86. Well, Apple is using processors other than the x86 in the iPhone and Apple TV. By keeping MacOS X processor-agnostic, Apple will be able to develop other new and innovative products based on the OS and whichever processor is most appropriate.
post #24 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

Neither performance nor watt where the reason for the switch. It was money, that's all. Through the switch Apple doesn't have to design their own chips, motherboards ,etc. And they don't have to pay for the cpu development. Intel does all that for Apple and they probably get a special price too. IBM can build more or less any CPU (see POWER6) you want, but you have to pay for that (like Sony, MS and Nintendo did). Apple didn't want to. As both didn't really needed each other, they seperated. Same with Freescale. Apple would use McDonalds CPUs if they thought they could make more money with them.

There were several factors. It wasn't just any one.

Performance was one.

energy efficiency was two.

New chip feature sets was three.

Manufacturer reliabilty was four.

The advantage of Intel's vast board design and manufacturering abilities was five.

x86 developers was six.

All of the above would lead Apple to build products at prices they felt they couldn't build before, and along the way, attract more developers who otherwise didn't want to bring products to a new chip family, using tools they weren't familiar with, as WELL as a new OS.
post #25 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

There were several factors. It wasn't just any one.

Performance was one.

energy efficiency was two.

New chip feature sets was three.

Manufacturer reliabilty was four.

The advantage of Intel's vast board design and manufacturering abilities was five.

x86 developers was six.

All of the above would lead Apple to build products at prices they felt they couldn't build before, and along the way, attract more developers who otherwise didn't want to bring products to a new chip family, using tools they weren't familiar with, as WELL as a new OS.


I would have to add to that by saying six reasons was just the tip of the iceberg. They had more reasons than those, but they all played a part in their decision to switch, and it really wasn't that big of a decision once you add them all up. Apple was right to leave. THey would have had a hard time growing with a manufacturer like IBM who couldn't even supply sufficient amounts of processors for existing buyers let alone new ones.
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post #26 of 127
With full 64 bit support in Leopard, universal binaries may contain code for up to 4 processor architectures: 32 bit Intel and PPC and 64 bit Intel and PPC. The info on Apples Leopard pages suggests that they are going to have ONE version of Leopard, not 4. For comparison, Windows has different versions for 64-bit. That is, Apples Frameworks and libraries are going to be universal (4 architectures) as well.
As soon as developers move to XCode, compiling universal applications is simple. It took Adobe CS3 a bit longer because they used different tools and (probably) some of their code base was not portable enough. The open source projects usually pay big attention to portability (even if performance is the price to pay), and this is not likely to change.
I am sure Apple is going to keep their code portable in the future. Now, when they improved portability with Intel transition and Leopard, why break it?
post #27 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadow View Post

With full 64 bit support in Leopard, universal binaries may contain code for up to 4 processor architectures: 32 bit Intel and PPC and 64 bit Intel and PPC. The info on Apples Leopard pages suggests that they are going to have ONE version of Leopard, not 4. For comparison, Windows has different versions for 64-bit. That is, Apples Frameworks and libraries are going to be universal (4 architectures) as well.
As soon as developers move to XCode, compiling universal applications is simple. It took Adobe CS3 a bit longer because they used different tools and (probably) some of their code base was not portable enough. The open source projects usually pay big attention to portability (even if performance is the price to pay), and this is not likely to change.
I am sure Apple is going to keep their code portable in the future. Now, when they improved portability with Intel transition and Leopard, why break it?

Apple is interested in moving on from old computers and they have made that obvious. They are not making versions of Aperture compatible with every old Mac, same goes for Motion, and other applications. Even leopard doesn't have GUI features on G4's that are available on G5's. Apple isn't going to make Universal binary versions of every bit of software forever. They may do it in house, but they wont keep releasing them. Apple is interested in selling new computers.. not seeing how long you can get by on a 486 processor.
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post #28 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadow View Post

With full 64 bit support in Leopard, universal binaries may contain code for up to 4 processor architectures: 32 bit Intel and PPC and 64 bit Intel and PPC. The info on Apples Leopard pages suggests that they are going to have ONE version of Leopard, not 4. For comparison, Windows has different versions for 64-bit. That is, Apples Frameworks and libraries are going to be universal (4 architectures) as well.
As soon as developers move to XCode, compiling universal applications is simple. It took Adobe CS3 a bit longer because they used different tools and (probably) some of their code base was not portable enough. The open source projects usually pay big attention to portability (even if performance is the price to pay), and this is not likely to change.
I am sure Apple is going to keep their code portable in the future. Now, when they improved portability with Intel transition and Leopard, why break it?

Because it's a waste of time and money, and they will have no use for it.
post #29 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadow View Post


As soon as developers move to XCode, compiling universal applications is simple. It took Adobe CS3 a bit longer because they used different tools and (probably) some of their code base was not portable enough.


Your reason sounds right to me -- Adobe no doubt had been using older tools for a long time. Let's hope Adobe converted everything to xCode this time, making future modifications easier.

post #30 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

There were several factors. It wasn't just any one.

Performance was one.

energy efficiency was two.

Well IBM can build a suitable CPU for every customer but Apple? No. The real difference Apple didn't want to pay for it, that's why we never saw a mobile G5.

Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

New chip feature sets was three.

Name one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Manufacturer reliabilty was four.

Ok maybe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

The advantage of Intel's vast board design and manufacturering abilities was five.

Which only save them the money to design it on their own.

Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

x86 developers was six.

If you build a universal, do you care about x86 or PPC ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

All of the above would lead Apple to build products at prices they felt they couldn't build before, and along the way, attract more developers who otherwise didn't want to bring products to a new chip family, using tools they weren't familiar with, as WELL as a new OS.

Name those magic products from "attracted" developers.
post #31 of 127
NOT a chance. Universal binaries and rosetta are a transition tool. Not unlike what they used to transition from the 68k series to the PPC.
post #32 of 127
No way, the PPC door is shut.
The Power 6 may be fanastic but for the price of say 4 of those Apple could buy many many more Intel CPUs and still make a good rendering farm. If there is no G3 support in 10.5 I would not expect any PPC support in 10.6 nor would I care even if I still like my G4 tower.
post #33 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrBoar View Post

No way, the PPC door is shut.
The Power 6 may be fanastic but for the price of say 4 of those Apple could buy many many more Intel CPUs and still make a good rendering farm. If there is no G3 support in 10.5 I would not expect any PPC support in 10.6 nor would I care even if I still like my G4 tower.

good point, but apple would never have used the POWER6 in one of their products, but we wont get into that, its been/being discussed elsewhere in the forum.

as regards to ppc support in the future, apple has to draw the line somewhere. while they pride themselves on being able to run there most up-to-date software on machines as old as 6 or 7 years, i think it is, they cant do so forever. im thinking:
10.5 = g3 support lost, everything else supported
10.6 = last release for g4 and g5, but would need pretty high specs on the g4 to run the OS, mainly being moderately good precessor, ram etc. might need other certain hardware specs such as a hd-dvd or blu-ray drive for installation as well, if apples made its mind up by then...
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post #34 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

Well IBM can build a suitable CPU for every customer but Apple?

I don't think any serious observer claimed that IBM could not build a suitable processor for Apple. They do claim, however, that IBM had turned its attention elsewhere--until it was too late. If you remember, after Apple announced its switch to Intel, IBM tried to persuade it to change its decision.
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

No. The real difference Apple didn't want to pay for it, that's why we never saw a mobile G5.

....

Apple was a bad customer? How high did you have to reach up your butt to pull that one out? The PPC is not one processor, but a family of processors used by IBM and in numerous embedded applications. Every G5 (PPC 970) processor produced so much heat that it required its own custom-mated cooling unit. I am aware of no information that IBM ever tried to develop a processor using he PPC 970 ISA which was suitable for use in a laptop.
post #35 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

Well IBM can build a suitable CPU for every customer but Apple? No. The real difference Apple didn't want to pay for it, that's why we never saw a mobile G5.

IBM can build a suitable CPU for use in boxes that do not demand 'SPEED BOOSTS' every 6 to 9 months. Microsoft contracted with IBM for the 360 and guess what... the CPU that they used when building the very first box is the same speed as the CPU they are going to put into the box in 2008.

You think IBM can build a CPU for *everyone* but you're wrong, they can't... Even in the "power' line a CPU that would NEVER be usable in a box costing less than $10k / $20k (to start) doesn't get 'speed bumps' at anywhere near the frequency of 'normal desktop processors'.

IBM has a good CPU but they simply can't advance their CPUs at the pace demanded by desktop/laptop users.

Just my .02

Dave

P.S. Oh and I really don't mean **they can't** but simply they choose not to..
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post #36 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post


Well IBM can build a suitable CPU for every customer but Apple? No. The real difference Apple didn't want to pay for it, that's why we never saw a mobile G5.


And you are pointing out a big reason for going with Intel. Intel spreads out the cost of developing desktop and laptop CPUs over all PC makers.

Apple was at a big disadvantage with IBM, and Motorola, because Apple was the only customer for these PC CPUs. With Apple footing the bill for CPU development, and support chips too, Apple could not compete as well.

The only economic way Apple could have continued with IBM is if IBM had been willing to absorb most of the PPC development cost, as a marketing strategy to stay in the personal computer market with the PPC. IBM evidently did not want to follow this course.


Now, to address the question of this discussion, IBM might be willing to foot the bill to develop a competitive PPC cell phone CPU that Apple could use. Such a move would not surprise me at all. By the way, do we know what processor is in the iPhone?

post #37 of 127
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Originally Posted by shadow View Post

I am sure Apple is going to keep their code portable in the future. Now, when they improved portability with Intel transition and Leopard, why break it?

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Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Because it's a waste of time and money, and they will have no use for it.

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Originally Posted by onlooker View Post

Apple is interested in moving on from old computers and they have made that obvious. They are not making versions of Aperture compatible with every old Mac, same goes for Motion, and other applications. Even leopard doesn't have GUI features on G4's that are available on G5's. Apple isn't going to make Universal binary versions of every bit of software forever. They may do it in house, but they wont keep releasing them. Apple is interested in selling new computers.. not seeing how long you can get by on a 486 processor.

You guys miss the point entirely!
Look back at Mac OS history: first on Motorola 68k, then Intel, then PowerPC, than Intel again. The biggest problem for the last 2 transitions was Mac OS 9 legacy code, which was not portable. It was resolved with Carbon and dropping Classic for Intel. Now that the issues are fixed, why should Apple break them??? Of course, they are not going to release universal applications with binaries for every processor out there, only for subset of supported ones. But they *WILL* keep their code base portable.
Go have a look at the open source stuff out there! Now, with Apple switching to Intel, what is the reason to keep compatibility with other processors and OSes? But they DO support other processors and OSes! And Apple is using open source heavily. Darwin - the core of the OS - is open sourced!
Now, go to some scientific projects and you will find that some guys are using/porting FORTRAN libraries from the 60-ies! (FORTRAN is a programming language, for those of you less computer educated ).

And now you are telling me that Apple is going to abandon code portability because Intel Rules?

Edit: Oh, and now, when Apple is spreading MacOS to a wide range of devices, they will drop portability, "Because it's a waste of time and money, and they will have no use for it."?
post #38 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by User Tron View Post

Well IBM can build a suitable CPU for every customer but Apple? No. The real difference Apple didn't want to pay for it, that's why we never saw a mobile G5.

That's absurd! No customer should ever have to pay for more than the product. It's not as though Apple was the only customer for the chips, even though they were the largest. This was up to IBM. If they wanted to sell their chips to a wider audience (and remember they used those chips in their own servers) then they had the responsibility to do their own investments. IBM was pushing the idea of a ciommunity of PPC users. It never got off the ground. If Apple had to bribe IBM, by paying them an extra hundred million or two each year, to help pay for R&D, Apple's costs would have risen too high, and then you would have complained about Apple's even higher pricing.

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Name one.

If you're so far out of it that you haven't been paying attention to what Intel is doing, and to what IBM hasn't been doing, you won't believe me anyway. Read some of the articles here about Intel.

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Ok maybe.

Ok, definitely.

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Which only save them the money to design it on their own.

Hello! What are we talking about?

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If you build a universal, do you care about x86 or PPC ?

Read the posts here please. I'm not going to go over that again.

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Name those magic products from "attracted" developers.

I'm not going to go looking for a lot of software. But this is an example of what I mean. We're seeing some heavy hitters in the Windows business space moving to the Mac because of the switch to Intel. I have others bookmarked, But I don't have time now to find them.

http://www.kx.com/news/press-releases/pr070417.php
post #39 of 127
Quote:
Originally Posted by shadow View Post

You guys miss the point entirely!
Look back at Mac OS history: first on Motorola 68k, then Intel, then PowerPC, than Intel again. The biggest problem for the last 2 transitions was Mac OS 9 legacy code, which was not portable. It was resolved with Carbon and dropping Classic for Intel. Now that the issues are fixed, why should Apple break them??? Of course, they are not going to release universal applications with binaries for every processor out there, only for subset of supported ones. But they *WILL* keep their code base portable.
Go have a look at the open source stuff out there! Now, with Apple switching to Intel, what is the reason to keep compatibility with other processors and OSes? But they DO support other processors and OSes! And Apple is using open source heavily. Darwin - the core of the OS - is open sourced!
Now, go to some scientific projects and you will find that some guys are using/porting FORTRAN libraries from the 60-ies! (FORTRAN is a programming language, for those of you less computer educated ).

And now you are telling me that Apple is going to abandon code portability because Intel Rules?

Edit: Oh, and now, when Apple is spreading MacOS to a wide range of devices, they will drop portability, "Because it's a waste of time and money, and they will have no use for it."?

You got it wrong from the beginning.

When was OS X ever being sold as an x86 OS before Apple completely switched over?

Never!

You can't say what you did, because it's just wrong.

Apple inherited an x86 OS with NEXT, but despite flirting with the Yellow Box for a short time, never released it.

The Intel based OS they had running in their labs was there purely for a bet that they would likely have to move to Intel at some point, which, of course, was exactly what they did.

After you fix your error, you can try to re-write your post so that it reflects it.
post #40 of 127
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Originally Posted by melgross View Post

You got it wrong from the beginning.

I am afraid you still don't get it! Do you understand that Apple currently supports 5 (FIVE) processor architectures? Will they bet there will be no changes in processor architectures the next couple of decades? Because the legacy code in OS X goes before NEXT, there is some older UNIX stuff there, so may be more than 2 decades.
And Yellow Box is another story - it is about support of Apple frameworks under Windows, not about supporting Intel. Apple never made Yellow box widely available, but it was there for a while for OEM use, to fill the gap for some software vendors running on NEXT before OS X was there. But thats not the point...

Oh, and did you notice that it took Apple much longer to add full 64 bit support than to switch to Intel? I don't want to go into a long discussion here on what it takes to support more processor architectures but I believe that most developers, including those working at Apple on Mac OS, don't really care to make special optimizations for a specific processor. They rely on the compiler (Apple is using third party compilers) and, in rare cases, on some highly optimized libraries.
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