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Monday, June 06, 2005

Why IBM Should Buy Electronic Arts

Why IBM Should Buy Electronic Arts

"Two tech titans are at each other's throats. Last month Microsoft unveiled the Xbox 360. It looks as jazzy as an Apple iPod music player--a notable feat since nerdy Microsoft has never before shown a touch for esthetics. Shocking is the toy's performance: It will run 10 to 20 times faster than the old Xbox, thanks to a three-core 3.2 gigahertz chip from IBM. Such horsepower means the Xbox 360, available this fall, will pump out animation so rich you'll scarcely discern the pixelated version of Tiger Woods from the golfer's flesh-and-blood form.

The hype was too much for rival gamer Sony. Trying to nip Xbox buzz while proving its feistiness under the leadership of outsider Howard Stringer, Sony leaked news about its PlayStation 3. Sony's toy won't be in stores until early 2006. But it, too, will offer whiplash performance--most say better than the Xbox 360's. The PlayStation 3 will run on a seven-core 3.2 gigahertz Cell processor from IBM and Toshiba and will sport a floating point performance of 2 teraflops. That's supercomputer territory.

Pocket Supercomputer
I don't normally write about computer games. And I don't intend to start now. My point in bringing up the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 is that they hint at what serious computing--corporate, government and academic computing--could look like a decade from now."

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