Originally Posted by GQgeek
From a marketing standpoint do you think anyone has even a vague idea of what you're talking about outside of EEs and a small subset of computer geeks? I can't remember how hard they pushed this idea, but maybe that's why they failed so badly. :P
I think they were saying something about giving supercomputing for the masses via later PowerPCs' vector processing along with saying how much faster the PowerPC was over the x86. RISC vs. CISC was flavor of the month back then, and computer geeks were fighting over it.
When Apple made the transition to PowerPC, Intel couldn't really offer anything competitive with the PowerPC. It was only later on that Intel processors became faster as IBM couldn't keep up with Intel's processor speed and power usage advancements.
Intel processors these days are basically RISC anyway, and the PowerPC implementation of RISC would appear pretty CISCy to the classic academic (and useless) definition of RISC, as embodied by MIPS processors. As usual with many things, it's not a clear-cut black-and-white kind of division between RISC and CISC. Both have architectural design features that are really useful for solving certain problems in processor design, and the fastest and most usable CPUs have to use a blend of both.
It's also interesting that all the game consoles today use PowerPCs, which belies the notion that there is an actual RISC vs. CISC conflict The only question is whether a processor is appropriate for a particular application, regardless of its architectural lineage.