Although IBM is committed to standards in the Java and Web services spaces, "the most excitement is around Linux. Its the fastest growing server operating system in the world," he said. Palmisano mentioned the Blue Jeans project, which links 10,000 systems in a grid environment, and an internal IBM grid system where 20,000 IBM employees are offering the idle capacity on their machines to help research small pox vaccines.Michael Borman, IBMs general manager of Global Business partners, said IBM has captured 35 percent of the blade market and business partners helped the company generate $500 million in Linux sales last year "and we expect to double that to over $1 billion this year." And by the end of this month, IBM will have more than 50 Express offerings. Express offerings are versions of IBM products focused on the SMB market. "We are enhancing our business partner charter," including the companys commitment to its partners, Borman said. "Our competitors dont want us to succeed," Borman said. "Scott McNealy used to snicker at out technology. Now he says it comes down to them and IBM. Hewlett-Packard says it comes down to them and IBM. And while I continue to add security patches to my PC every week, Bill Gates says it comes down to Microsoft and IBM. Hes right."
In addition, Palmisano announced the IBM Human Capital Alliance, which will include $35 million to train people for future jobs in the industry.