PC Magazine’s John Dvorak is predicting that Apple will switch to Intel processors within the next 12 to 18 months. “The story starts with January’s Intel sales conference. The surprise keynote speaker was Steve Jobs. And then, in the front row of Steve Jobs’s keynote address at the last Macworld Expo were top Intel executives,” writes Dvorak. “Shortly thereafter, Pixar announced that it would become an Intel shop. That was all step one. Step two is coming.” He thinks Apple will announce its Intel initiative with a “transition machine” that uses both Intel and Motorola processors. Dvorak also expects Apple to use the Itanium chip and optimize the OS X kernel for it, making the likelihood of the Mac OS being ripped off by normal PC users nil. He expects the announcement of the switch at the upcoming Macworld Expo New York or Fall Comdex. Dvorak fails to mention the IBM PowerPC 970 processor, which is widely expected to make its way into the Apple lineup.