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  • 'Several people' could be the next Apple CEO, reveals Tim Cook

    macxpress said:
    I'd bet the farm right now that Jeff Williams is the next CEO of Apple after Tim leaves. 
    I don't know why people keep suggesting this, it's been pointed out a number of times that Jeff Williams is almost the same age as Cook so if Cook retires at 70 in 7 years (2030), Jeff Williams would be starting as CEO at 67. He'd end up having to do the same transition again in a few years.

    Greg Joswiak would be 67.
    Lisa Jackson would be 67.
    Eddy Cue would be 66.
    Johny Srouji would be 66.
    Deirdre O'Brien would be 64.
    Craig Federighi would be 61.
    John Ternus would be 55.

    If Tim Cook retires at 70, around the same age as Bob Iger tried to retire, he will have been CEO for just under 20 years. For a stable transition, the successor would ideally be able to lead Apple for 10 years minimum before the age of 70.

    Federighi would almost manage this and would be a good fit but it feels like a long-term successor would be under 50 today, would start as CEO at 57 and be able to lead Apple for over 10 years. Tim Cook started as CEO at 51.

    This could be any of the younger people that show up in the Apple events. For example Colleen Novielli has been at Apple for over 9 years and would be around 46 in 7 years:

    People are thinking about suitable candidates for a CEO transition today but they'd be taking over in 7+ years so it has to be someone suitable 7+ years from now. Almost all the leadership currently at Apple will be retiring by then and it will be a new generation that takes over. The old leadership will be Apple Fellows, board members, consultants etc and available for guidance.
  • What Apple's three GPU enhancements in A17 Pro and M3 actually do

    blastdoor said:
    Does the GPU support 64 bit floating point?
    Someone made a library to support this here:

    It's going to be pretty slow compared to dedicated hardware. High-end consumer GPU double precision is around 1TFLOPs:

    Dedicated GPUs for this are over 30-40TFLOPs:

    but the Nvidia one costs over $40k:

    It's probably most cost-effective using cloud services:

    The above Metal float64 support was to help add support for 64-bit atomics for Unreal Engine's Nanite feature:

    "The Apple GPU architecture only supports 32-bit atomics on pointer values, while other architectures support texture atomics or 64-bit atomics. The latter two are required to run the current implementation of Nanite in Unreal Engine 5 (UE5). Nanite is a very novel rendering algorithm that removes the need for static LOD on vertex meshes. Rendering infinitely detailed meshes requires subpixel resolution and rasterizing pixels entirely in software. To implement a software-rasterized depth buffer, UE5 performs 64-bit atomic comparisons. The depth value is the upper 32 bits; the color is the lower 32. This algorithm is an example of a larger trend toward using GPGPU in rendering.

    There was a recent discovery that Nanite can run entirely on 32-bit buffer atomics, at a 2.5x bandwidth/5x latency cost. However, Apple added hardware acceleration to the M2 series of GPUs for Nanite atomics. This includes a single instruction for non-returning UInt64 min or max. It does not include the wider set of atomic instructions typically useful for GPGPU, although such instructions were effectively emulated in the prototypical metal-float64. The A15 and A16, part of the same GPU family as M2, do not support Nanite atomics. Hopefully the A17 will gain support in the next series of chips."

    Apple added 64-bit atomics for M2 (Apple8), M3 and A17 (Apple9):

    Consumer GPUs aren't well suited for double precision computing.

    These are features they can add into Mac Pro versions of M3 Extreme. These models would be priced near $10k but if they can do 10-20TFLOPs FP64, it will be useful to some people. I doubt the volume of buyers justifies the manufacturing though and is why the Nvidia one is over $40k.
  • M3 Ultra could have up to 80 graphics cores

    Does anyone feel there is any merit to the rumours of a further interconnect between 2 M?Ultras into something even more extreme? 
    Would there even be an idea to package up many M3 Ultras into compute nodes like Nvidia is doing with their chips? The power draw from the M3 Ultra is nothing compared to their chips. Maybe this is something for Apple’s iCloud.
    The chip images between M1 and M3 look like they have a similar layout, the bottom part of M1 Pro (the GPU) is doubled in the Max chip, CPU is the same 10-core. GPU in M1 Pro is 16-core, Max is 32-core:

    In the M3 image, the Pro chip is upside-down but the same GPU part is roughly doubled, M3 Pro has 18-core, M3 Max has 40-core. However, the Max chip is wider now and has a faster CPU (16-core vs 12-core):

    The Ultra chip joins two Max chips along the bottom edge:

    It's likely they will do the same with M3. But there could be an option to put another GPU component in the middle to make a 3x GPU.

    M3 Max is 17TFLOPs (40-core), 2x would be 34TFLOPs (80-core), 3x would be 51TFLOPs (120-core). It would still be short of a 4090 with 3x but basically the same as a maxed out 2019 Mac Pro and around the same as a laptop 4090.

    I expect the Mac Studio will top out at a dual chip. The Mac Pro would have more room for an extreme version with extra GPU cores and could add more memory (384GB). They might not feel that investing in a custom chip is worthwhile for such a small shipment volume though (<10k units).
  • Apple confirms that there is no Apple Silicon 27-inch iMac in the works

    rob53 said:
    Apple keeps pushing laptops because they feel portability is what everyone wants.
    Apple's not pushing people to laptops, they just sell what people want. The trend towards laptops and mobile has happened everywhere.

    Laptop also doesn't mean confined to a small display. A desktop confines people to a large display and fixed location. Many people opt for the best of both (Apple employees use this setup in their offices):

    This allows for a larger display than the iMac as well as options like OLED and matching dual displays and should the need arise to take the laptop on vacation, to bed, to the lounge, to work or take it for repair, unplug it and it's portable.
  • Apple is 'very pleased' with its movie box office, says theater chain

    mpantone said:
    The film industry continues to use this benchmark because it's a pretty good indication of a film's popularity relative to the most important film consumer market in the world: the USA.
    Seems like there's too many variables for it to be a reliable measure. The opening weekend total puts it behind Cocaine Bear:

    But worldwide revenue for Cocaine Bear was $88m:

    Even though they are in the same range, Killers of the Flower Moon is already above this:

    There's a big variation in the split between domestic and international from one movie to another because some movies mainly appeal to US audiences. Taylor Swift's movie, like Cocaine Bear, has a roughly 75:25 domestic/international split:

    Oppenheimer is 35:65. Killers of the Flower Moon so far is around 50:50.

    The opening weekend for Oppenheimer was just below Taylor Swift's but eventually made 2x domestically and 4.5x internationally.
    Fast X domestic total was below Taylor Swift's but made 80% internationally.

    Killers of the Flower Moon is 38th worldwide this year:

    The top 20 mostly makes sense. This movies feels like it should at least be in position 20-30 but that would need another $40m. If it has enough time left in the theaters, maybe it can make it.

    It has good reviews at least so it should measure well on streaming and the more of this quality of exclusive content, the better the Apple TV service will be.