ATM: Speeding Up Networks
At the IBM Research Laboratory in Zurich, Switzerland, researchers have designed what's known as PRIZMA technology, or "Switch-on-a-chip." Switches are an integrated element in networks because they control the flow and direction of data. Through the Zurich lab's extensive research, IBM is able to offer an integrated circuit embedded with sophisticated switch technology that adds higher, more efficient performance to high speed and ATM-based networks, thereby speeding up data-intensive applications.
The architecture of Switch-on-a-chip is based on the separation of data from control flows. The IBM researchers in Zurich designed a way to control the output queues - the waiting lines for data - so that the Switch-on-a-chip delivers very high performance without losing any data packets in transmission. The result is faster data flow, with all the information arriving at its destination intact.