IBM Brings Innovation, Technology Influence and Expertise to Austin for 40 Years

IBM Research and Development Labs in Austin Are Engine for Global Technology Advancement and Local Economic Growth

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AUSTIN, TX - 03 Oct 2007: IBM (NYSE: IBM) today commemorated the 40th anniversary of its operations in Austin, Texas by demonstrating a number of innovative technologies for clients to highlight its commitment to solve pressing technology challenges for organizations and society.

In the past 40 years, Austin has grown into a global hub for information engineering and computing solutions. Throughout this time, IBM has worked with local clients and partners to shape Austin’s technology landscape, helping transform it into a significant contributor to the world economy. From the manufacturing of the Selectric Typewriter in 1967, to the creation of the world's fastest UNIX computer servers and the groundbreaking nine-processor core IBM Cell processor that shipped in 2006 with the Sony PlayStation 3, IBM in Austin has evolved into a critical component of IBM’s globally integrated enterprise.

IBM has actively participated in Austin’s technological and financial development, and the native talent found in Austin has helped to advance IBM’s operations. In 2006, IBM received 3,621 U.S. patents, the most of any company over the past 14 consecutive years. Austin contributed more that any other IBM location worldwide to this distinction with 624 patents, or 17% of IBM's total patents. The number of patents awarded to IBM in Austin is a testimony to Austin’s technical talent: five of IBM's top ten inventors work in Austin in areas such as hardware and software architecture and open source technology.

"Long before many people considered Austin synonymous with high tech, IBM was here creating innovative computing solutions and laying the groundwork that would lead to our city becoming one of the leading technology hubs in the country," said Austin Mayor Will Wynn.  "IBM's contribution to Austin over the years -- technologically, financially, and talent-wise -- is immeasurable. They are a pioneering company in Austin."

“Tapping our global expertise and collaborating with partners around the globe, IBM R&D labs solve some of the most challenging business problems,” said Steve Mills, Senior Vice President and Group Executive, IBM Software.  “We look forward to growing together with Austin and developing new technologies that will be adopted around the world.”

A recent trade survey conducted by the American Electronics Association (AeA), the nation's largest trade association, cited Texas as one of the leading providers of high-tech employment in the United States.

“I don't think it's immodest to say that IBM helped lay the cornerstone of the high-tech industry in Austin 40 years ago,” said Tony Befi, IBM’s Senior State Executive for Texas and Senior Location Executive for Austin.  "From advanced research to development of industry leading hardware and software to service for our worldwide clients, we’re helping Austin lead the way in technological innovation and achievement.”

"Through the sharing of technology, resources and talent, IBM and the University of Texas have enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship that goes back many years," said Ben G. Streetman, Dean of the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. "In fact, IBM is a top hirer of UT Engineering graduates year after year. We consider IBM Austin an invaluable partner."

With more than 6,200 employees and an annual payroll around $600 million, IBM Austin is the largest research and development organization in Texas. Locally, IBM employees contribute to a wide breadth of IT disciplines.  Austin is the development headquarters for IBM System p Unix servers and IBM Tivoli systems management software. Additionally, the site hosts several technology labs, including the IBM Austin Research Lab, which focuses on power-aware computer systems;  the Solutions Experience Lab, which provides solutions for industries based on open standards and new technologies; the Accessibility Lab, which explores technologies to make life easier for people with disabilities, and an Extreme Blue Lab where university students use IBM resources to solve real life challenges.

In Austin, IBM engineers also craft industry solutions using IBM WebSphere Commerce, a Web-based commerce platform; Rational brand business process management software; and the Power family of microprocessors.

In October 2001, IBM Research introduced the term “Autonomic Computing” and published the Autonomic Computing Manifesto, a call to action to the industry and an overview of autonomic, or self-managing, computing systems. Once considered science fiction, today autonomic technology is one of the greatest drivers of innovation in computing, addressing one of the most important obstacles in the industry: complexity. Over the past six years, IBM's Austin site has contributed hundreds of new autonomic features, including server system provisioning automation; system and microprocessor workload partitioning; and many other areas of automated system management. Through the Linux Technology Center and other local teams, IBM has made significant contributions to several open standards that help reduce complexity in otherwise complicated, heterogeneous data centers.

Technologies that will be demonstrated include:

World Community Grid: The World Community Grid is the largest public, global humanitarian effort in existence that applies the unused computing power of individual computers to help solve difficult societal issues. The Grid currently links 700,000 computers. Projects that have been run on the World Community Grid to date include FightAIDS@Home, which completed five years of HIV/AIDS research in just six months.

Data Center Power Management Research: One of eight global IBM Research Labs, the IBM Research Lab in Austin focuses on researching computer system power management. Currently, $16 billion is spent annually on energy bills for running data centers worldwide. This research project uses IBM’s Autonomic Computing self-managing technology to help reduce wasted power with computer system provisioning. It represents an integrated, autonomic data center power management solution for all kinds of business types.

QED Wiki/Tivoli Mashup: Mashup Makers, considered to be the next generation of the Internet, or Web 2.0, make information management more efficient. QEDWiki Mashup Maker is used as an assembly environment for all kinds of business operations. The demo shows mixed capabilities from multiple Tivoli software products on a single, easily customized user interface, allowing activities or systems to be centrally managed using Web 2.0 technology. It can be applied to many industries that require integrated operations.  For example, a shipping company might use this technology to give ship operators a glimpse of weather predictions and ocean currents, while headquarters, receivers and clients could use the technology to check the status of cargo on the vessel.

Made in IBM Labs
IBM has a network of more than 60 research and development labs around the globe that collaborate on advanced solutions for clients. IBM’s laboratory population includes 28,000 researchers, developers and engineers. Twenty percent of them work directly with clients. In 2006, the labs conducted more than 10,000 engagements with clients. 

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