For IBM, Speed Rules

Its new Power 6 puts Big Blue ahead of rivals for the fastest chip. Plus, its ability to run cooler could put lots of heat on the competition

For chipmakers, the race for processing speed may be back on. Semiconductor archrivals Intel (INTC) and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) eased up on the gas pedal recently, amid concerns that too speedy a chip interfered with performance and threw off too much heat. Suddenly, it's IBM (IBM) that feels a need for speed.

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