PC Solutions Briefs: Toshiba, Dell, IBM, Transcom

PC Solutions Briefs: Toshiba, Dell, IBM, Transcom

Toshiba, Dell ink components pact

Toshiba has signed a deal to supply Dell Computer with components on a worldwide basis. Scheduled to run for three years, the agreement has a potential value during that period of US$5 billion.

What distinguishes the new arrangement is that both companies will commit to ensuring that their product road maps better align with each other, officials said.

Dell will gain a better sense of advanced technologies on the horizon, such as polysilicon LCDs, and how to create products to accommodate such technologies, officials said.

The kinds of components covered by the deal include Toshiba's DRAM, SDRAM (synchronous DRAM), static memory, LCDs, and storage products.

IBM ups PC ante

IBM has added to its NetVista desktop PC line with several new models for enterprises, small business, and consumer users. The new models, the A20I, A20m, A20, and A40, share a common design across different desktop, minitower, and microtower form factors.

According to IBM officials, this feature benefits large enterprises because it eliminates the need for software requalification, a process of retooling each new system for custom software.

For small businesses and consumers, IBM is launching a Build Your Own program, which lets customers select the exact specifications of a new NetVista PC. Selections include CPU type and speed, memory, and hard drive disk size.

A natural alliance

Ant-inspired Transcom Software has joined forces with Excalibur Technologies (Nasdaq: EXCA) whose market-leading RetrievalWare is based on the biological behaviour of frogs, to create a new offering by the name of Colony Merlin.

The Colony Merlin system is designed to reduce human workload and create a knowledge-rich environment in which relevant, up-to-date information is delivered to workers as they need it.

"We looked to social insects, such as bees and ants - and in particular, to how they solve complex problems and reject mediocre solutions when a superior option emerges," said Tom Triggs, chief technical officer of TransCom.

Conversely, Excalibur Technologies' RetrievalWare is inspired by observations of how a frog's biological system is tuned to ‘trigger' feeding behaviours as a split-second response to the appearance of food, such as a fly passing overhead, commented Peter Doyle, Excalibur's European marketing director.

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