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Apple wanted to adopt Intel CPUs in late 90s

Posted on Tuesday, November 15 2011 @ 22:15:08 CET by

DailyTech reports Larry Tesler, an Apple veteran from the 1990s, revealed the company was less keen on PowerPC than commonly believed. A port of MacOS to Intel's x86 platform was attempted in the mid-90s, but Tesler recounts that it was just really really hard to make it work and that therefore senior engineers decided it was necessary to first modernize MacOS before jumping to x86.
But according to a new Churchill Club talk by Larry Tesler, an Apple veteran from the 1990s, Apple was trying to ditch the PowerPC even back then. Apple lured Mr. Tesler away from Xerox Corp.'s (XRX) PARC project to hep build its graphic user interface operating system.

When it comes to ditching the PowerPC, Mr. Tesler remarks:

It was actually one of the reasons that the company decided to acquire Next… We had actually tried a few years before to port the MacOS to Intel, but there was so much machine code still there, that to make it be able to run both, it was just really really hard. And so a number of the senior engineers and I got together and we recommended that first we modernize the operating system, and then we try to get it to run on Intel, initially by developing our own in-house operating system which turned out to be one of these projects that just grew and grew and never finished. And when we realized that wouldn’t work we realized we had to acquire an operating system, either BeOS or Next, and one of the plusses was once we had that we could have the option of making an intel machine.



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