Despite initial expectations that set-top boxes and PCs would converge, the trend towards RISC chips such as MIPS continues. An oft cited reason for this is the lower power requirements of RISC solutions, which might give low power x86 manufacturers such as Centaur, Transmeta (?), and Cyrix for their MediaGX chips an advantage. Perhaps however, it is not x86 that is being fled, but domination by Microsoft that is being avoided. After all, set-top boxes are a cost, not a revenue to content-selling cable operators: do they really want to upgrade their infrastructure each time Microsoft comes up with a new version of Windows? A winner in this market will be Cygnus solutions, sellers of GnuPro tools to the embedded market, and thus Free Software Standards.
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