All rather odd
It is all rather odd, but if it's working commercially for IBM one can't really question their marketing strategy.
One thing I don't really understand though is why machines with such enourmous single thread performance don't make a bigger splash than they do. I mean, there's plenty of techies, engineers and scientists out there who could really do with a core running at 5GHz! That's way quicker than anything from Intel or AMD, especially if one contemplates an alitvec unit running at that speed too. I know that IBM make these processors and machines with an aim to put them in to business applications, but there's far wider applications out there beyond merely adding up people's bank account balance. Wasted I tell you, wasted.
So is anyone out there using one of these machines for a scientific / technical purpose?