While Merced is on track for 2000, it's role will be
limited to that of a launch vehicle
for IA-64. Indeed,
the next generation x86 (Foster) will deliver similar
performance to native IA-64 code on Merced for most apps.
Only apps requiring 64 bit addressing would benefit from
Merced. However this picture will change in late 2001 with
McKinley which should be twice as fast. In 2003, a derivative
of McKinley in 0.13 micron may be cheap enough to ship for
high-end PCs. A big headache for Intel will be how to convince
software developers to migrate. S:
My personal opinion
is that the next really large leap in computing requirements
will be driven by Artificial Intelligence software, for tasks
such as natural language processing and integrating
knowledge into a model of the world... but within 5 years?
What do you think will be the next CPU-power sink? Games?
In related news,
ST's new PC on a chip will run Linux