Steve Mills runs IBM's $20 billion software business. He obsesses about large enterprises running thousands of transactions per second with terabytes of data and a need for absolute certainty of execution. It's a stack of enterprise software writ large, but don't get the idea that Mills has his head in the cloud. The 34-year IBM veteran doesn't put a lot of stock in the latest IT disruptor--cloud computing--for his customer base.
The data centers used by tech companies to run their Web sites and corporate networks are notorious energy hogs.
The information and communications technology sector currently accounts for about 6 percent of the nation's power consumption, up from about 2 percent to 3 percent in 2000, according to a report in February from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.
In a report to Congress last August, the Environmental Protection Agency predicted that the amount of power used by U.S. data centers would more than double over the next five years, at a cost of $7.4 billion … Read more
Google still rules Millward Brown Optimor's annual BrandZ top 100 list, which annoints the world's most powerful brands based on financial performance and a global consumer-opinion survey.
Technology-related companies did especially well, taking more than one-third of the top 30 spots.
No. 7 Apple was a big mover, increasing its brand value by 123 percent, and BlackBerry (from Research In Motion) increased 390 percent, positioned at No. 51. The staid IBM's brand value increased 65 percent, and Amazon.com, at No. 61, was up 93 percent.
On the downside, No. 62 Yahoo took a 13 percent brand … Read more
IBM blew past first-quarter earnings estimates Wednesday, posting earnings of $1.65 per share.
Wall Street had expected Big Blue to post earnings of $1.45 a share on revenue of $23.7 billion for the quarter, according to Thomson Financial. Instead, IBM posted an 11 percent increase in first quarter revenue to $24.5 billion, compared with the same period last year.
IBM, cited strong performances in its Global Technology Services unit, which posted a 17 percent increase in revenue to $9.7 billion, as well as double-digit growth with its Global Business Services, also up 17 percent to $… Read more
Chips in 2009 will run faster but not necessarily hotter. That's the gist of what IBM, along with its joint development partners such as Samsung Electronics and Toshiba, announced Monday.
The IBM alliance is using "high-k/metal gate" technology to achieve this, the same category of process technology that Intel currently uses in its 45-nanometer processors. The alliance says it is seeing performance improvements of up to 35 percent over 45nm technology at the same "operating voltage" or power levels.
This allows alliance chipmakers such as Samsung, Toshiba, and Freescale Semiconductor (formerly an arm of … Read more
Proximity communication--an interconnect technology being devised by Sun Microsystems that lets two devices swap data just by being near each other--isn't ready for commercial release, but the company is showing off samples.
At the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Las Vegas this week, David Douglas of Sun Labs showed off silicon that embodies the concept. Here is a link to a video on his talk on ZDNet. Douglas is holding the chips, which he didn't demonstrate in action.
In proximity communication, two capacitors sit near each other. When data is sent to capacitor one, it gets charged. The charge … Read more
IBM's latest supercomputer is hooked up to the watercooler.
Big Blue has come out with a new version of its high-end supercomputer, the Power 575, which can provide five times the performance of its predecessor on 40 percent of the power. A fully stocked Power 575 rack contains 448 processing cores.
A substantial part of the decrease in power consumption is due to a water cooling system that brings in chilled water from the outside, runs it through copper plates located above individual processors to absorb heat, and then draws the water out so it can expel the heat … Read more
IBM and the U.S. government are back in business.
The company announced Friday that a temporary suspension order, which had banned IBM from participating in new federal government contracts, has been lifted.
But while the ban, which lasted nine days, has been removed, Big Blue is still busy cooperating with the Environmental Protection Agency with the investigation that had triggered the broad suspension. The environmental agency is examining possible violations of its procurement process over IBM's bid for EPA business.
The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia is also investigating the issue.
For … Read more
IBM, a fan of many open-source projects, has taken a minority stake in EnterpriseDB, an open-source database that competes with Oracle and MySQL.
On Tuesday, EnterpriseDB is scheduled to announce a $10 million round of funding, with IBM taking a minority stake in the company. Existing investors Charles River Ventures, Fidelity Ventures, and Valhalla Partners led the round.
The money will be used to ramp up the company's product development and sales, according to EnterpriseDB CEO Andy Astor. Altogether, the 4-year-old company has raised $37.5 million.
EnterpriseDB makes a version of open-source database PostgreSQL that is compatible with … Read more
IBM has devised an optical switch that it says could one day allow processor cores to exchange large files rapidly, the company plans to announce Monday.
The component, which is still in the experimental stage, is the latest piece of technology in the field of optoelecronics. Currently, signals inside chips gets passed on electrons running on microscopic wires. Compared with photons (particles of light), electrons are slow, and they generate heat. In optoelectronics, researchers hope to take technology from fiber-optic communication and shrink it to the chip level. Ideally, these miniaturized components can be produced inexpensively on silicon, increase computing … Read more