IBM this week announced the formation of Power.org, a collaborative community of itself and 14 partner companies with the goal of promoting hardware and software development centered on the Power architecture standard developed by IBM.
The communitys members span a wide range of semiconductor, operating system and consumer electronics companies, including Bull, Novell Inc., Red Hat Inc. and Sony Corp.
Sony announced earlier that Armonk, N.Y.-based IBMs Cell processor—a 64-bit multicore processor based on the Power standard—would form the core of its upcoming Playstation 3 game console.
Notably absent from the Power.org coalition are Apple Computer Inc. and Motorola Corp. (and its spun-off chip-making subsidiary, now named Freescale), two founding members of the original AIM (Apple, IBM and Motorola) Alliance, which was instrumental in the creation of the PowerPC processor.
Apple currently uses both IBM PowerPC 970 and Motorola processors in its Macintosh line of personal computers.
Power.orgs stated goal is to drive “the next wave of innovation in electronics,” according to an IBM news release. More specifically, the group will help the associated companies develop bus technology, key to future use of the high-bandwidth “Cell” processor. They also plan to work on high-volume servers.
Though no detail was available as of publication, the coalition claims that the standards around the Power.org initiative are open, thus enabling partner companies to develop customized architecture technologies. A Power.org news release cites the PowerPC-based Cell processor as an example of how companies can adapt the Power architecture.
A larger goal of the coalition is to develop a “Power Everywhere” strategy. The Power.org Web site says the groups mission includes promoting the Power architecture as “the preferred open-standard hardware development platform for the electronics industry,” which includes manufacturers of items from signal processors to kitchen appliances to game consoles to large-scale servers.