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Blackforest, an IBM RS/6000 SP computer The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), begins using "Blackforest," an IBM RS/6000 SP that is five times larger and 20 times more powerful than the Deep Blue system which defeated world chess champion Garry Kasparov in 1997. NCAR researchers use Blackforest to evaluate the effects of industrial pollutants on the Earth's climate.


IBM Research announces a $100 million initiative to build a supercomputer, named Blue Gene IBM Research announces a $100 million initiative to build a supercomputer, named "Blue Gene," that will be 500 times more powerful than the world's fastest computers. Capable of more than one quadrillion operations per second (one petaflop), its computing power will initially be used to model the folding of human proteins -- IBM's first computing "grand challenge" since "Deep Blue."


IBM says that Whistle Communications, Inc., the industry's leading manufacturer of "thin server" products, will become a wholly-owned subsidiary.

IBM and Sequent Computer Systems announce a merger agreement under which IBM will sell Sequent's product line worldwide and integrate Sequent technologies into IBM products. Sequent then becomes a wholly-owned subsidiary of IBM.

IBM acquires Mylex Corporation, a leading developer of technology for moving, storing, protecting and managing data in desktop and networked environments as a wholly-owned subsidiary.

The company rolls out the S/390 G6 Server as the world's most powerful commercial enterprise server. The S/390 Parallel Enterprise Server - Generation 6 is the first enterprise server to use IBM's innovative copper chip technology, and extends customers' ability to handle millions of e-business workload transactions and large-scale enterprise resource planning applications. The S/390 G6 family's largest system can deliver more than 1,600 MIPS capacity.

IBM, the company that defined ultraportable computer design with such milestones as the ThinkPad 701C with a fold-out "butterfly" keyboard, unveils the ThinkPad 570 as its next-generation ultraportable PC. This powerful notebook PC is the first of a new breed of "transformer" systems that instantly converts from an all-in-one, desktop-replacement notebook PC into a thin and light ultraportable. IBM announces the computer industry's first desktop PC equipped with speech recognition technology for small and growing businesses. The IBM PC 300GL Small Business Series features ViaVoice, speech recognition software designed to deliver simplicity and naturalness in speech dictation and voice control via the computer system.

IBM launches the world's first personal computer made from 100% recycled plastic resin - the IntelliStation E Pro. This followed in the footsteps of IBM's 1992 introduction of the first personal computer to use recycled plastic in the housing. IBM's integration of recycled plastics in new system production is unmatched in the computer industry and demonstrates IBM's technological leadership in introducing products that satisfy both the customer's requirements for features and price, and are environmentally conscious. Since 1987, IBM has reduced hazardous waste generation by more than 70%, and more than two thirds of the non-hazardous waste generated by IBM in 1997 was recycled.

IBM launches the IBM Enterprise Storage Server - code-named "Shark" - a new generation of enterprise disk storage systems. Shark is the most scalable storage system in the world (from 420GB to 11 TB), and it provides the fastest throughput of any storage system in the world. Pitney Bowes Inc. becomes the first company to take delivery of a production level machine.

IBM introduces two new high-performance hard drive models: the 36-gigabyte Ultrastar 36ZX - which can hold the equivalent of 1,188 feet of shelved books - and the Ultrastar 18LZK with the fastest seek time (4.9 msec) of any hard drive in the industry. The company also launches a Deskstar 37GP as the world's highest capacity hard disk drive for desktop PCs. It can hold the equivalent text of a stack of paper four times higher than New York's World Trade Center or seven full-length feature films. Later, the company announces the Travelstar 25GS, the world's highest capacity notebook PC hard drive, holding four times as much data as the average notebook hard drive. It also has the highest rpm of any notebook PC hard drive. Introduced at the same time is the Travelstar 12GN, the most rugged hard drive available anywhere. And the Ultrastar 72ZX is unveiled as the world's highest capacity server-class hard drive, holding the equivalent of a floor of books at the New York Public Library in a drive the size of a paperback novel.

IBM and Dell Computer Corporation announce a $16 billion technology pact, the largest agreement of its kind in the information technology industry. As part of the agreement, Dell will purchase storage, microelectronics, networking and display technology from IBM for integration into Dell computer systems. In the future, the agreement is expected to include IBM's copper, silicon-on-insulator and other advanced technologies. Later, IBM and EMC Corporation announce a five-year strategic technology and business alliance valued at $3 billion, which significantly expands an existing business relationship between the two industry leaders and will benefit many of IBM's and EMC's mutual customers. Under the terms of the accord, EMC will continue to purchase advanced IBM disk drives for incorporation into EMC's Symmetrix Enterprise Storage systems.

IBM completes a strategic agreement with Ford Motor Company to provide application development - including a unique Accelerated Solutions Center (ASC) - and deployment services to reduce time-to-market and yield worldwide cost efficiencies. At the ASC, IBM is to support up to 150 concurrent application projects in such areas as distribution, finance, human resources, marketing and sales, manufacturing and product development.

IBM launches the next generation of its RS/6000 SP supercomputer with POWER3 microprocessors that more than double its number-crunching power at approximately the same price. The POWER3 can perform up to two billion operations per second and is more than twice as powerful as the POWER2 Super Chip inside IBM's "Deep Blue," the computer that beat world chess champion Garry Kasparov in 1997.

The IBM S/390 CMOS Cryptographic Coprocessor chip - a key product for providing secure e-business - receives the U.S. government's highest certification for commercial security. To date, IBM offers the only two products to achieve a Federal Information Processing Standard 140-1 Level 4 certification.

For the seventh year in a row, IBM receives the most U.S. patents - 2,756 - which is 913 more than the number two company and nearly 100 more than IBM won in 1998. IBM, the first company ever to break the 2,000 U.S. patent issuance barrier in a single year, now owns more than 32,000 patents worldwide, including 17,500 in the United States.

Company researchers and engineers set a new world record in hard-disk storage density, writing and reading data bits so small that an unprecedented 35.3 billion of them would fit within a square inch. The new record density is a 75 percent increase over the 20-billion-bit milestone IBM achieved earlier in the year and is expected to lead to disk drives that could store three times more information than those available today.

IBM becomes the first corporate partner approved to connect to Abilene, a new high-speed network of leading research universities in the United States. Through Abilene, IBM researchers will collaborate with Internet research institutions on the development of advanced Internet applications that will enable IBM customers to exploit the full potential of e-business.

IBM announces a major advance in semiconductor technology by combining both memory and logic functions on a single computer chip, enabling the production of smaller, cheaper, more powerful electronics products. Embedded DRAM "system-on-a-chip" semiconductors will speed the race toward miniaturization and pervasive computing by significantly enhancing the performance of many electronic products while making them smaller and less expensive.

IBM researchers set a world record by sorting one trillion bytes of data in 17 minutes, about one-third the time of the previous record of 50 minutes. The sorting benchmark tests the efficiency of a computer's input-output management and internode communication rather than pure calculating power.

IBM is the #1 worldwide server vendor with 23% market share (measured by revenue), according to International Data Corporation (IDC). IBM servers are installed in 95% of the companies listed in Dun & Bradstreet 1,000 key businesses, and about 70% of the world's business data and business transactions are managed by IBM servers. IBM's AS/400 is the world's most popular multi-user, commercial business computer with more than 700,000 systems installed in over 150 countries.

IBM establishes the Deep Computing Institute, a $29 million research initiative that will bring together experts in academia and industry to address some of the world's most challenging business and scientific problems. Deep computing combines massive computation and very sophisticated software algorithms to attack problems previously beyond information technology.

Lotus Development Corp. and IBM join with leading academic institutions to form the Institute for Knowledge Management. This initiative is the first of its kind for the information technology industry, and offers corporate enterprises and organizations the first opportunity to access the world's largest information base on Knowledge Management structures and applications.

IBM announces plans to create the IBM Design Center for e-transaction processing, a 10,500-foot facility in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., where customers can explore the leading edge of e-commerce and develop new approaches to e-business.

IBM's S/390 G5 Server sets a new record for Internet performance, posting a rating of 21,591 hits per second - a 50 percent increase over the previous record.

IBM reaches a major milestone in shipping its one-millionth copper PowerPC chip, just one year after shipping its first copper chip. IBM's copper PowerPC processors are helping to fuel the company's growth as a major OEM supplier to makers of networking gear. At the same time, IBM introduces the copper-based PowerPC 440, the industry's highest performance embedded processor to date, which can be used to boost the flow of traffic in the routers, hubs and switches that power networks like the Internet.

IBM becomes the leading vendor in the field of high performance computing. More universities, government laboratories and businesses use IBM supercomputers (RS/6000 SPs) than those of any other manufacturer on the "TOP500 Supercomputing Sites" list.

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