"I don't see IBM providing a Watson-based game-playing service," Rao said. "Our goal is not to produce computer games, but [to] apply this ground-breaking computer science to business and enterprise-level issues."
IBM also wants to show new ways of human-computer interaction and the ability to weed out relevant information from warehouses of data.
The company has been adding FPGAs (field programmable gate array) to perform specific data processing functions on servers, while adding more cores to speed up chips. IBM is also redesigning servers to reduce latency between the CPU and memory, which helps speed up application performance. The company's EX5 server design, which was introduced last year, steps away from traditional x86 server designs by decoupling memory and processors into separate boxes. The separation provides servers access to a larger memory pool, and a special chip designed by IBM sitting near the CPU reduces latency between the memory and processor.
Down the road, the EX5 technology could include flash storage as a memory option, Rao said.
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.