[rescue] Apple WWDC Summary

J. Alexander Jacocks jjacocks at mac.com
Tue Jun 24 16:32:53 CDT 2003

Nathaniel Grady <nate at grady.is-a-geek.com> said:

> Hm, what about Apple licensing OS X to IBM to offer on workstations / 
> laptops based upon the G5 (and possibly Power5)? IBM's price points are 
> usually high enough that it wouldn't cause Apple to flinch, the quality 
> is about the same, the markets they target are not really the same (IBM 
> = business / technical, Apple = Arts / School / Home / Biologists (only 
> science that seems to be really into macs), although I fully realize 
> there is a lot of grey smudginess  -- basically, it wouldn't hurt 
> Apple nearly as bad as opening up to clone makers, it would allow a 
> drastic increase in business penetration, IBM could get a much-needed 
> "friendly"/"cool" side (heck, they could offer it with a "corporate" 
> interface theme instead of the "lickable" one by default)... If IBM 
> offered the machines, I probably could convince my boss that one of 
> these "IBM RS/X Workstations" would kick ass, and before she knew it, 
> we'd have a mac shop (amusingly, half of us working in her lab now have 
> Macs at home - all because of OS X and/or spiffy-looking cases)
> Ok, so it's a bit far-fetched.
> Hm, how about a 3-way Coup d'etat for Apple? Start a new "clone" market 
> with SGI and IBM, where they're not going to be fighting PC-commodity 
> level pricing, but still get the "look" of multiple suppliers. IBM gets 
> to sell "cool" os-x based machines that are easier for traditionally 
> anti-mac people to slip past their bosses / enter the mid-range 
> "between pc's and Power5" market. SGI gets a high-end graphics card in 
> a main stream machine -- maybe they could do something like the failed 
> NT attempt. Market some cheaper workstations based upon G5's / high end 
> video cards aimed at markets a bit over what Apple aims at -- would 
> allow studios / technical places to have OS X / G5 zoominess on both 
> their cheap machines (instead of pc/linux boxen) and the high-end 
> modeling boxes (reduced NT/linux on PC temptation). I think it would be 
> much more successful than the failed NT attempt, since they wouldn't be 
> trying to sell something slightly better than a vanilla PC at 2x the 
> price - they'd be trying to sell something a step above what apple 
> offered (with kick-ass video capabilities), at 1.5x the price ($6-8k 
> for a low-end sgi instead of $5-6k for a high-end mac). SUN/IBM also 
> sell big server lines that Apple is hesitant (for a reason) to tackle. 
> Also, 3 companies in the mix would make the os-x / G5 market look a lot 
> more tenable to businesses / people worried about apple tanking, as 
> well as allow penetration into some new markets. Each company wins a 
> bit, Apple doesn't loose nearly as much as a full-out clone market. The 
> limited group of high-end hardware manufactures that actually talk to 
> each other would allow the Apple plug-and-play thing to continue as 
> well - no bargain-basement corner cutting that screws up so many PCs.
> Ok, even more far-fetched, but I think if that happened, it would make 
> a lot of people like me, who are dipping their toes into the water and 
> like what they see os-x and hardware wise, but are hesitant to jump in 
> and let "Big Steve" tell us what to do. Also, it would be a lot easier 
> to go to my "macs are evil!" boss and say "look, they're not the 
> machines they were 5-10 years ago, they're real UNIX workstations, that 
> are easier / less crash prone / faster than the PCs we have floating 
> around / they can access SMB mounts and print to the PCs with printers 
> / Office runs better on them -- look, IBM and SGI sell them now - 
> that's proof enough they're a different beast now" than to say "hey, I 
> like the new macs - they have a nifty interface, run office better, 
> don't crash, bla bla bla, no, only Apple makes them, how do I know 
> they're different and better now? Well, I have one..." Nope - that 
> latter conversation happened and failed. She still screeches every time 
> she seems the apple logo on the back of my Pismo.
> ps: No, SUN and Apple don't fit together at all in my mind.
> Just my excessively drawn-out thoughts for the day. Am I totally nuts?
> --Nate

Well, that's sorta already been done.  Get a Power 4 (big brother of the 
PPC970) based RS/6k, run linux with MOL.

Run OS X under MOL.  Believe it or not, MOL/OS X doesn't do badly even 
on my PowerBook G4 667 512mb.  Think about how it would run on a 1.4gHz 

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