IBM is to invest US$200 million over the next two years in its new AIX Collaboration Centre. The money will be used to equip and staff the centre, with the ultimate aim of creating a better working relationship between IBM and users of AIX. The centre, located in Austin, Texas, is home to IBM's UNIX development efforts, and will officially open this Friday. Satya Sharma, an IBM engineer and the company’s chief AIX architect, will manage the centre.

The center will provide AIX customers, developers, ISVs (independent software vendors) and academics access to the company's latest hardware, software and training, as well as technical consultants onsite and in remote locations. IBM will use the center as its base to develop and test new applications and middleware for AIX. The company will also work on key technology areas in relation to AIX, including virtualization and high availability of systems, according to Karl Freund, vice president, pSeries product marketing for IBM.