The Independent: Apple poised to regain title of fastest personal computer

“If the details that [appeared on Apple’s website appeared for about half an hour on Friday night] are correct, then the fastest of the new machines would each have two 2GHz processors made by IBM. That would make them faster, in speed terms, than normal Windows PCs, the fastest of which has a single Intel processor running at 3Ghz. This could reignite competition for speed in the personal computer world, where for years Intel has reigned supreme,” writes Charles Arthur for The Independent.

“The new machines with IBM chips would be able to do “64-bit” arithmetic. That would put them on a par with top-end scientific workstations. The current generation of PC processors, introduced around 1991, do 32-bit arithmetic. The shift would put Apple in the forefront of personal computing,” writes Arthur.

Full article here.


  1. Thank goodness Apple finally got IBM to do its chips. IBM has for a long time made fantastic machines with reliable parts, it’s about time Apple used some of IBM’s muscle to create a windows beating mac for the man in the street. Let’s hope we see some more positive press in the papers like this. Motorola were only ever interested in making phones anyway. woohoo!!

  2. I don’t think that 99.999% of the computer-using population has a clue as to the significance of 64-bit processor. Now, clock speed is even more irrelevant. This is a huge design leap for a home computer. Prior to today, you would have to spend 10 times the money to get such power in a scientific computer. Now, Apple has the temerity to put TWO of these in parallel?

    What can you do with 64 bits? Things that take intensive calculations of huge data-sets like voice recognition (understands who is talking, and what they are saying, real language translators), image recognition (being able to identify items and individuals within a photo, in Photoshop there could be a menu item to “Select Only People”)

    This isn’t just a speed thing, it’s a data-chunk and instruction-chunk thing. Some will try to equate it to speed but that would be wrong. Speed is like reading more books in the same time. Increased bit-size is more like an increase in vocabulary. What took many lines of code, now only takes one instruction. Imagine the speed difference between a high school student and a college graduate reading a technical manual. The high school student isn’t slower because he doesn’t read the words as fast, but because he needs to constantly go to separate locations (in this case a dictionary) to understand the instructions: The same reading speed, but one is slowed down by comprehension (sub-routines).

    Going from 32-bit to 64-bit is merely NOT A DOUBLING in size, it is increasing it’s ability to handle numbers 4 BILLION times larger in a single pass. The only thing limiting the CPUs vocabulary is the size of the chip and the designers’ time.

    Many people will not see ANY speed increase because they do not need to use numbers near 18,000,000,000,000,000,000 (2 to the 64th power). But it does give Apple huge latitude in designing better user interfaces and complex special effects, as they continue to make computers more human friendly.

    There is no way to compare such completely different CPUs as the G5 and the Pentium. The Mhz/Ghz myth is finally DEAD!!

    This is a MAJOR leap in reatil computer design. Now, it’s time to see Microsoft try to create a “bit-myth” to underplay Apple’s advanced technologies.

  3. I think computer technology has to keep going forward, whatever it takes, from 64 to 32 maybe someone won’t see it, but for those who knows will matter… Details halways made of Apple users, special users.
    If Apple was just like intel or windoze we would have the same computers and the same way of thinking about computers… Is it like this today? Dont think so, neither has been in the past.
    Keep goin’ apple folks, keep innovate and being different!

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