It's developed a radically different Debian Linux box aimed initially at network storage and web server applications that could challenge the budding green concerns that computer people everywhere pay lip service to since its power consumption and heat dissipation are radically lower than anything else around.
The box is appropriately called the Revolution x16 Server and uses a 16-core network processor based on the 64-bit Mips chip developed by a bunch of ex-Alpha folk at Cavium Networks. The chip is called Octeon. It can reportedly execute 20 billion instructions per second while consuming just 50 watts with no drive or 60 watts with a drive.
That's better than Sun's Niagara-based T100 and T2000 servers, which come in at about 72 watts per chip - let the battle for flops per watt begin. The most exciting thing will be when one or two other vendor get into this. That's when the CIO's will look at their quad-processor Xeons running at 800 watts and think of a big animal that lived a long time ago. Yes, that's a dinosaur coming into your mind, except it's made out of big iron.
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