abpp wrote:
Again, the move to Intel (x86) chips is a step backward to CISC!

The 8086 may have started off as some lowly 8 bit toy controller with
silly segemneted memory, but it has come a long way since then.

When Intel announced the CSI (now called quickpath) memory/cpu
intertconnects which were inspited from the now defunct Alpha chip, the
IA64 (Itanic) was to have it first, and the 8086 get it later on.

Well, I've had a quadcore quickpath 8086 computer under my desk for some
time now, Itanic is late, as usual, and won't have quadcore with
quickpath until sometime in 2010.

The 8086 is Intel's core product, and it gets the attention and
development and it is (for intel) first to market with new features,
process shrinks etc. If it (or AMD's equivalent) are first to market,
then the wintel machines have a marketing advantage. The longer the time
before competitors catch up, the more market share you lose if you are
not using the chip that is ahead.

And Intel has poured enough money into the 8086 to make it into a
respectable 64 bit high performance machine.

I am not sure what differences exist between Power and PowerPC, nor what
justification for such differences. Power is right up there in term of
performance, and has had an equivalent to quickpath well before Intel
got there, as well as shared cached for multi core CPUs (again, well
befreo Intel got there).

However, if Apple wanted variants of the main Power chips, it would mean
more development costs and perhaps not benefitting from the main Power
advances. I recall Jobs mentioning that they had trouble getting
updated PowerPC chips for laptops and Apple's laptops were faling
seriously behind.

So, even though Power may still be superior to the 8086, the versions of
PowerPC that were usable for desktops and laptops were far behnd.

Intel deserves credit for managing to turn a lowly toy controler into a
respected high performence 64 bit chip.