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Well, the cat's out of the bag - Jobs has confirmed in his WWDC keynote speech that the first Intel-based Mac will be shipping next June, with the lineup transitioned by June 2007. The demos on stage have been on OS X running on a 3.6GHz P4.

And 10.5 will be known as "Leopard".
 
 
 
 
 
 
Still don’t know the answer, but reading Apple’s guide on Universal Binaries does bring up some educational tidbits: the emulation only goes as far as a G3. Applications that can optionally make use Altivec and the like on a G4 or G5 will still work, they’ll just fall back on the (emulated) G3 code. Applications requiring a G4 or G5 won’t work with Rosetta.
BTW, I notice the keynote's now available to view, with H.264 available for those able to take advantage of it. (Which now includes Windows users, with the QT7 preview now available)

Still churning through the Ars thread on the general topic, but it's mostly pure speculation, aside from a side note of some interest, explicitly stating that Intel Macs (still seems odd, writing those two words together) won't be using Open Firmware. I'd imagine this might signal a boost for Intel's EFI as a replacement for the supremely crusty BIOS of old.
Well, it is C|Net, but they're running a story confirming that it is indeed Transitive's work behind Rosetta.
Yay.

I'd seen some Xbench scores posted (PPC code being emulated on one of the Apple x86 development boxes), and the results were not disappointing. Somewhat retarded, certainly, but not horrible, and averaging out to about the same ballpark as my current PowerBook, which is fast enough to keep me employed.

The tidbit I found particularly interesting is that system calls and official API's will fall through to native code; these are not emulated. So those Xbench CPU scores, being fully self-contained, don't reflect what "real world" use will be like...it may actually be downright snappy. Encouraging stuff.

This is all pretty much moot for me, since about 95% of everything I do involves either the OS-bundled apps, or Adobe who've pledged OS X86 support. Bring it on.