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AMD Loses $1.2 Billion and Its CEO

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the non-sustainable-business-models dept.

AMD 373

Barence writes to mention that after seeing almost $1.2 billion in second quarter losses, AMD's CEO has resigned. Stepping up to fill his shoes will be Dirk Meyer, previous company president and COO. "Only two years ago, the company held a processor performance lead and was making serious inroads into Intel's market. However, AMD failed to keep pace with Intel's Core technology, and it once again surrendered its performance crown at the dawn of the multicore era. Those problems were exacerbated by the bungled launch of the Barcelona processors, which prompted Ruiz to make a frank public apology last December."

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i hope they keep up (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244415)

The last thing i want is an intel/ms only world. Bad enough MIPS and PPC have gone the way of the dodo more or less. AMD is the last bastion of creativity in CPUs.

Re:i hope they keep up (4, Informative)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244455)

I don't want to see AMD fail either, but remember: we'll always have ARM.

Re:i hope they keep up (5, Funny)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244479)

Thank heavens for the second amendment!

Re:i hope they keep up (4, Funny)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245273)

They can pry my DS from my cold, dead hands!

Re:i hope they keep up (5, Insightful)

dedazo (737510) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244665)

Not to worry. History (or the Slashdot version of it at least) will remember AMD being taken down by the evil Intel, and things like AMD having taken to lead in the desktop CPU market or the fact that buying ATI was a phenomenal mistake will be ignored.

Companies don't die, they're just taken down viciously by companies we don't like.

Re:i hope they keep up (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244687)

SPARC too...
what is happening to the world? Lots of cheap and fast enough instead of lots of pow and crazy fast?

Re:i hope they keep up (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24245115)

But intel makes processors for Macs now. According to /. rhetoric, they thus cannot be evil.

Re:i hope they keep up (3, Interesting)

xhrit (915936) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245225)

We have the Cell.
Long live Transmeta.

Re:i hope they keep up (2, Insightful)

ArTourter (991396) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245329)

The thing is, the last thing INTEL wants at this point is for AMD to disappear as well. Their competition over the last few years has driven the industry forward and I doubt INTEL doesn't recognise this.

The death of AMD would be rather bad for Intel in the long run as well as for the industry.

Stocks fall (4, Informative)

Drakin020 (980931) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244421)

It appears their stocks have dropped 12% on this news.

http://finance.google.com/finance?client=ob&q=NYSE:AMD [google.com]

Re:Stocks fall (2, Insightful)

Mojo66 (1131579) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244859)

With AMD/ATI being the only competitor to Intel and Nvidia, their success guarantees low CPU/GPU prices. As soon as they'd go bankrupt, prices would go through the roof. My next toy will be a 4870.

Re:Stocks fall (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244913)

What?!?

A company announces worse results than expected and the share price falls.

Unheard of!

Re:Stocks fall (0, Troll)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245029)

It dropped 12% from its high yesterday, which was basically an artificial buildup in the hopes of something good. It is now at $4.6, which is roughly where it was before, I expect it will drop to $4.3 or even under $4 when this news settles. Remember, there is no way to properly value this company, the proper valuation is NEGATIVE because that's what profits are. Thus there is no bottom limit to what the stock will reach, it is only bound by the optimism of the stock's investors.

Re:Stocks fall (1)

soibudca (846319) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245127)

Actually it seems like the stock fell ~12% because they missed earning estimates for the quarter. The mood with respect to CEO change seems somewhat ambivalent. Ruiz was not popular with investors and largely blamed for running the company into the ground by not solving production problems. Some blog post level comments seem to suggest that bringing in Meyer as CEO is a mistake. Anyone from AMD / ATI out there want to pipe in on the mood in house? --snip-- ""From 2001 to 2006, Meyer led the companyâ(TM)s microprocessor business, overseeing related R&D, manufacturing, operations, and marketing." Right. Forget Ruiz, _THIS_ is the guy who is responsible for AMD's sorry state. Responsible for the horrible marketing. Responsible for manufacturing problems. Responsible for the failure of K10 (aka Bulldozer aka Core-killer aka the architecture which should have been 10h which should have kept AMD on top which should have arrived a while ago but won't for another two years). They really should have promoted somebody from ATI or the outside or, I don't know, ANYONE but Meyer. Sigh. "

For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244457)

For me, it's all about the graphics. Last computer I bought, I got an Intel CPU, since that was the only way I could get decent 3D. Fortunately, I had little need for high performance. I only needed passable 3D and stability.

Anyone know what the status of ATI/AMD open source 3D is these days? This will seriously affect my next purchasing decision. If it's any good, then AMD (via ATI, at any rate) will be getting my money.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (2, Insightful)

coolsnowmen (695297) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244489)

I would rather drop a cheap nvidia card in a machine than deal with intel graphics 3d acceleration problems.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244529)

CPU != GPU

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (3, Informative)

Dan93 (222999) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244771)

CPU != GPU

He was probably talking about the Intel GPU [intel.com] .

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

Scotteh (885130) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244669)

From what I've heard, Intel graphics cards are much more Linux-friendly. My brother had a really hard time getting his old laptop working with an nVidia graphics card.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (-1, Troll)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244923)

I didn't even know Intel made graphics cards!

The Intel integrated graphics is Crap. This is well documented. Not only is the hardware somewhat anemic, Intel does not give the engineers time to workaround all the bugs, so the drivers never mature to the state they should be in.

Right now, I am having the best luck with my ATI card in Linux (Compiz) but YMMV. (go figure, I used to like NV better)

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (4, Informative)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244961)

I didn't even know Intel made graphics cards!

Only integrated graphics, as far as I know.

The Intel integrated graphics is Crap. This is well documented. Not only is the hardware somewhat anemic, Intel does not give the engineers time to workaround all the bugs, so the drivers never mature to the state they should be in.

The hardware is low-end (and low power, which is good). The drivers ahve always proven rock-solid to me. And all the features work out of the box with no tweaking. There was a bug related to screens larger than 2048x2048 for 800 series chips. This is well documented in xorg, and is unlikely to be fixed. What awful bugs are there in the 900 series? I've never had a graphics related crash from any Intel GPUs.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

Scotteh (885130) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244963)

My mistake. I didn't mean to say Intel graphics cards. I was talking about laptop hardware. I've been told to look for laptops that are entirely "Intel Inside" (not Intel CPU and ATI graphics or something) because it will most likely be supported easily in Linux.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1, Troll)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245243)

Well, if you are looking for PURE open source drivers right now, Intel may be your only choice.

If you are looking for something that works, and has OS drivers coming in the future, it is not so cut and dried.

Example, My wife has an dual core Turion, and I have a Core2Duo Centrino.

My Centrino is all sorts of grief in Ubuntu and Mandriva (and Vista). The wife's has been flawless.

Examples?
I cannot play a movie in a 3D desktop, she can.
I have constant problems trying to get wireless drivers to work in mine(native or ndis), I just install or upgrade on hers and it works.

Even in windows, I have a difficult time playing simple 3D games in Vista on the Centrino, so I installed XP. Yes, the Intel engineers seem to to have gotten time to work out the flaws in Vista. (nor will they I hear)

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. Opp'ty??? (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245321)

Isn't this an opportunity for AMD??? Does AMD partner with Acer and other Taiwan/Korea/Asia-based laptop and desktop makers? If AMD went on an offensive to make ONLY Linux-friendly computer GPU's/cards, it could create a massive shakeup...

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

puto (533470) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245365)

Intel has made graphic chips for years. If you have someone just crunching numbers, wood processing, that is all you need.

And Intel does provide complete documentation and creates linux drivers.

Sound like you just got your geek card.

Puto

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244537)

Last computer I bought, I got an Intel CPU, since that was the only way I could get decent 3D.

Clarify something here for me: what the hell does your CPU have to do with it? Your GPU is what's pushing the pixels, that's the key component.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244575)

Translation, he wants a 3D chip with an open source driver.

The only way to get that is to buy an Intel board which necessitates an Intel CPU.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244747)

Thanks for explaining. Still doesn't make sense, but that's his choice :)

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (2, Insightful)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244815)

Last computer I bought, I got an Intel CPU, since that was the only way I could get decent 3D.

Clarify something here for me: what the hell does your CPU have to do with it? Your GPU is what's pushing the pixels, that's the key component.

You may not have noticed, but Intel are the #1 GPU maker, in terms of sales and quality/stability/openness of drivers. Last time I checked you need an Intel CPU, since the GPU is integrated in to the chipset.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244893)

If anyone is using an Intel GPU, they aren't getting "decent 3D". Intel's GPUs are shit... or at least, every one I've run across was. If you want to get halfway-decent 3D, the first thing you should do with your Intel GPU is throw it out and slap an ATI/nVidia board in there.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245299)

Intel GPU's aren't GPU's in the same sense as a Nvidia or ATI GPU. They rely heavily on system memory and system processing power. This is why a strong processor is needed with them and why the intel graphics don't hold a candle to ATI and Nvidia graphics on games and so on.

When you think of Intel graphics, think of "win modem" instead of a real hardware modem. The reasons intel graphics are easier to support in linux and other alternative operating systems is due the the development of graphics subsystems and 3d altogether. It used to be that everything was done in the systems and the 3d accelerator just needed to support storing and combining the data. I remember years ago when I got my first 8 meg video card and could see 3d graphics. I them saw a huge performance increase by installing a 3DFX voodoo 3d graphics accelerator which could only do 3d and you had to cable the 2d graphic through it. But almost everything other then what is absolutely necessary for displaying the 3d was done by CPU. Eventually, the GPU concept was made and a lot of the processing was off loaded directly to the video card to get what we commonly refer to today as a GPU. BTW, I still have a few video overlay cards that at one time were necessary for proper DVD decoding and playback. Now the decoding is handled on chip by graphics cards or in software because the processors and memory are powerful enough to handle it. It wasn't always the case.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

joostje (126457) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245207)

Clarify something here for me: what the hell does your CPU have to do with it?

Until recently, the intel graphics cards were the only ones that had open source 3d drivers. So you have to get intel graphics cards, and thus(?) an intel CPU

Huh? (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244545)

How would have AMD impeded use of good 3D cards? Even if you thought nVidia SLI was the only 'good' answer, there are nForce chipsets for AMD with SLI too... I personally don't buy into the price-power-performance ratio of SLI or CrossFire, btw.

If you meant OSS 3d.. (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244587)

I can see your point, and it probably won't be until the October/November timeframe at best before distributions will make current-gen AMD/ATI graphics have 3D out of the box in an OSS way.

I personally used nVidia recently, though this laptop is AMD with their binary driver, which has been improving at least.

Re:Huh? (1)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244755)

How would have AMD impeded use of good 3D cards? Even if you thought nVidia SLI was the only 'good' answer, there are nForce chipsets for AMD with SLI too... I personally don't buy into the price-power-performance ratio of SLI or CrossFire, btw.

You can't get an AMD computer with a 3D card with decent drivers under Linux. My experiences with the NVidia drivers have been less than stellar.

Re:Huh? (0)

PunkOfLinux (870955) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245049)

If you haven't tried the new ati linux driver (yes, it's a binary blob, waaah) then you should. Ever since AMD took over, it's gotten a lot better.

Re:Huh? (4, Insightful)

serviscope_minor (664417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245147)

If you haven't tried the new ati linux driver (yes, it's a binary blob, waaah) then you should. Ever since AMD took over, it's gotten a lot better.

What's with the "waaaah" comment? These days, I steer clear of binary drivers. I spent many years on proprietary hardware with binary drivers. I have used binary blobs in Linux as well. I have consistently found that open drivers provide a better experience, with more stability, better implementation/larger quantity of features, and greater longevity of the hardware, since support stays around. Binary drivers (and closed software too, as it happens) have always come back to bite me sooner or later. Are you saying I should:

1) Ignore my years of previous experience

2) Support manufacturers who do not supply products I like

because you think I'm needlessly complaining?

Re:Huh? (1)

PunkOfLinux (870955) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245307)

Things change. If you're not going to try the new drivers (which are very stable and updated about once a month) then don't complain. If you have an older one, and don't want to use compiz and stuff, then just use the open source driver. But don't complain when you get crappy performance, which is MY experience with the OSS drivers.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244579)

Serious question - what do you mean by getting an intel CPU for "decent 3D"?

As far as I'm aware, unless you're at the absolute highest price bracket available, AMD has CPUs matching the performance of Intel's CPUs, and at half the cost. Is there some way in which this isn't true for "decent 3d"?

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

MarcQuadra (129430) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244927)

Sorry, that's not so anymore, nor has it been since the Core 2 came out. The Core 2 come in variants that are stripped-down and cheap, without being super-slow.

I don't have the time to do all the research right now, but Intel has been trouncing AMD in the price/performance category for quite a while, and AMD keeps falling farther and farther behind.

Re:For me, it's all about the graphics. (1)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245055)

Get some sleep, you are not making sense.

note, I am assuming it is sleep deprivation or drugs.
But then again, maybe you created a BOT to do /. posts, and it just screwed up. lol
If you did write one, you have to post a link to the code! But with a GPL 3 licence please, I wouldn't want MS to be able to use it, just think of /. being filled with MS fanboy jibberish! (yes, I know MS could technically use GPL 3.0, but they claim it is viral, and then they might have to opensource everything, lol)

Don't invest in AMD... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244463)

And don't invest in ANY company that pays executives millions of dollars while they piss away the entire value of the company.

Hector Ruiz ran AMD into the ground (presiding over a catastrophic loss of close to 75% of the value of the company). He got paid millions and millions of dollars to do that? Wake up people.

Re:Don't invest in AMD... (4, Interesting)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244635)

It's up to the shareholders to hold the company to the fire. I have no idea why every shareholder of every company out there isn't forcing the companies to put in performance clawbacks. Imagine if a CEO were faced with the possibility of having to return their bonuses, and maybe even a portion of their salaries, if the company did a nosedive like AMD has. But since shareholders are either too stupid or too frightened to start pushing their weight around, this CEO bonus crapola continues. Oh well, I'm not investing in AMD, so if they want to pay a fucking retard millions to screw their share value, then my hats off to them.

Re:Don't invest in AMD... (5, Informative)

smooth wombat (796938) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244813)

I have no idea why every shareholder of every company out there isn't forcing the companies to put in performance clawbacks.

Because it is the Boards of these companies that set pay policies, not shareholders. Further, it is all but impossible to get a measure on the proxy vote to force the Boards to change pay policy. The best one can hope for is to make a 'recommendation' to the Board to change pay policy.

Unless is it is specifically stated somewhere in the corporate bylaws, the final decision as to executive compensation rests with the Board, not the shareholders.

Re:Don't invest in AMD... (4, Interesting)

afidel (530433) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245025)

It's simple, the board of directors of most companies who are the ones setting things like CEO contracts are full of CxO's of other companies. It's felt that there is a major quid pro quo going on where the board of one company raises the pay for executives then the senior executives at company A talk to their friends who sit on the board of the companies B,C,D where the board members of company A are executives and increase the salary of the executives at B,C,D.

The beginning of the end for AMD (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244471)

Bummer. There was a time when I would choose AMD every time over Intel just for sheer "stick it to the man" value. The fact is though that Intel dualies outperform their AMD counterparts in nearly every way. I guess when a mediocre CPU manufacturer merges with a mediocre GPU manufacturer this is what you get.

Re:The beginning of the end for AMD (5, Informative)

Spatial (1235392) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244849)

I guess when a mediocre CPU manufacturer merges with a mediocre GPU manufacturer this is what you get.

At the moment AMD's GPUs are the best value you can get. The Radeon HD4850 and 4870 are exceptional cards while Nvidia seems to have botched their latest line - although they're faster, they're hideously expensive for only moderate performance gains above AMD's parts, and have very large power needs. And just for the record, every GPU I've bought has been an Nvidia one. I'm no AMD/ATI fanboy.

Fix it! (5, Insightful)

raijinsetsu (1148625) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244487)

I fell in love with AMD many years ago. They had the price and performance edge, and were also more stable than Intel. I think they need to take a step back an evaluate what the hell they're doing. They need to find a way to pull out of the competition while they clean up their act so they can start giving their customers what they want: cutting edge technology. I've read many articles about proposed AMD technologies, but I haven't seen many come to light (glueless HT, is one that comes to mind). Clean up your act!

Can't (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244565)

You can't have a price performance edge as you put it and cutting edge tech. You have to get $$$ for R&D and to get it, you build it into your prices - like Intel does. That's why Intel's price/performance isn't as good as AMD's.

If AMD followed your advice, their prices would increase and their price/performance will match Intel's or worse - especially if they keep all their R&D here in the US.

Re:Fix it! (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244685)

> They had the price and performance edge, and were also more stable than Intel.

Er.. no. They were faster for a given amount of money, but I wouldn't say they were more stable. I finally went for Intel on my current PC because they'd lost the price advantage (I couldn't get anything like as powerful a chip for the money, nor the number of cores). Many companies would never touch AMD for stability reasons.

Re:Fix it! (1)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244789)

i agree AMD did for a while have a great price/speed point.. but i have never found AMD (overall) to be nearly as stable and of high quality for CPU's as Intel

the number of AMD cpu's i have RMA'ed vs. Intel's i have RMA'ed is sickining.

for now i am sticking with Intel - they have redeamed them selves after the Netburst crap

Re:Fix it! (1)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244855)

Well, AMD CPU's often had less OCing headroom but they were not less stable.

The reason for any "CPU" instability was poor chipsets. (Thanks VIA and all)

Benefit of the doubt...Maybe you meant that AMD did not have "STABLE PLATFORMS" for business. Where they lock everything in for a given amount of time so business can buy the same (crap) hardware for two years to minimize maintainance. That was true.

Re:Fix it! (0, Flamebait)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244925)

oh god please don't remind me of VIA - i have worked hard the past 8 years to block their existance from my mind..

Don't let the door hit you Hector (4, Funny)

gr8_phk (621180) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244503)

Back at MOT (now freescale) I hear they called him Hector the Sector Director. People were happy to see him go. After his time at AMD, I'd call him "Hector Ruinz".

Re:Don't let the door hit you Hector (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244539)

RTFA:

"Ruiz will remain with the company as executive chairman."

Re:Don't let the door hit you Hector (1)

angryfirelord (1082111) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244885)

I agree. When AMD released their K8 architecture to the wild, they really gained a lot of momentum from it. But I was disappointed when Hector really didn't seem to care keeping that lead (since he always wanted to increase his salary) and now AMD is struggling to catch up. Good riddance to you Hector.

Buying ATI = idiocy (5, Insightful)

Spy Handler (822350) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244507)

if instead of buying ATI, the dude spent the money on R&D and actually coming out with products that can compete with Intel CoreDuo, he might not be resigning...

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244555)

But then Intel would have nothing to buy out if/when AMD goes belly up.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (5, Insightful)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244697)

The problem was that Intel wasn't spending money on products that could compete with CoreDuo. They got really, really, really lucky.

The Core line of chips were originally developed as low-power laptop chips based around an older technology than Intel's "mainstream" chips of the day. Intel's roadmap up until very recently focused on further development of the Pentium 4 and Itanium lines (both of which ultimately proved to be unsustainable)

One of Intel's development teams in Israel saw the huge potential that the old Pentium III architecture had to be fast and power-efficient, when coupled with a more modern manufacturing process. In the end, the low-end power-efficient chips began to outperform their power-hungry Pentium 4 desktop offerings, and Intel quietly rebranded the line, and began to offer the Core chips as their flagship desktop offering.

Intel also made a great many mistakes with the development of Itanium, and their reliance on RAMBUS (which was proprietary, expensive, and actually slower in many cases than plain old DDR SDRAM). Their failure to embrace x86-64 could have also easily spelled disaster for the company. In terms of 64-bit development, AMD has always been the clear leader.

Intel should be counting its blessings, as they've made far more missteps than AMD have. Fortunately for them, they have a massive marketing team and extensive manufacturing facilities, both of which AMD lack.

Hopefully AMD can make something out of their R&D relating to GPGPUs, and stay viable as a competitor.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (5, Interesting)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244741)

Intel should be counting its blessings, as they've made far more missteps than AMD have. Fortunately for them, they have a massive marketing team and extensive manufacturing facilities, both of which AMD lack.

But more importantly, lots and lots and lots of money. Intel had the financial wiggle-room to come back from some rather colossal errors over the last decade. AMD simply did not. It could stay competitive providing it had a focused plan, but the ATI deal was precisely what AMD could not afford.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (1)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245071)

Actually, buying a graphics and chipset vendor was a great idea. They just bought the wrong one. Via was the obvious choice, but probably wouldn't sell for what AMD could pay.

With Via they'd have gained S3 graphics, Via chipsets, and Via and Cyrix CPU tech, and Via's low-power CPU tech. That'd be a bigger win than when they bought NexGen.

If AMD does sell instead of coming back or folding, don't expect the FTC, the SEC, and the DoJ to allow Intel to be the buyer. IBM, perhaps. Via, too. Freescale, TI, Sun, Siemens, Fujitsu, Sony, or HP wouldn't be out of the question. Even Apple or SGI could make a strategic move to stave off Intel price increases that would surely happen if AMD were to fold.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (5, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244809)

One of Intel's development teams in Israel saw the huge potential that the old Pentium III architecture had to be fast and power-efficient, when coupled with a more modern manufacturing process. In the end, the low-end power-efficient chips began to outperform their power-hungry Pentium 4 desktop offerings, and Intel quietly rebranded the line, and began to offer the Core chips as their flagship desktop offering.

I'd hesitate to call that luck, let alone "really, really, really lucky". It sounds like terrific teamwork by engineering, production and management.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (5, Interesting)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245093)

I'd hesitate to call that luck, let alone "really, really, really lucky". It sounds like terrific teamwork by engineering, production and management.

I'd agree 100%. Intel's R&D group in Israel pulled off a small miracle with their work, and should be highly commended for it. However, from what is publicly known, it seems as if it were almost a sort of "skunk works" project, largely independent of the main R&D efforts of the company. I don't think that there was terribly much being expected from them, and the fact that they were able to deliver an extremely viable product was a fortunate coincidence.

Intel's main R&D efforts were terribly misguided. It was common knowledge that RAMBUS Itanium, and the P4 line all had serious limitations, and yet Intel continued pushing forward with these products.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (2, Insightful)

Phroggy (441) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245209)

Exactly. Intel got lucky in the sense that this little R&D group in Israel was able to come up with something brilliant, and the company was able to capitalize on it. If the Israeli group hadn't done so, the situation might be much much different.

That doesn't mean the Israeli R&D group got lucky - they're just brilliant. The company got lucky.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (4, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245305)

But the Israeli group *did* exist, they *were* given the autonomy to do that work, the management *did* recognize the merits of it and decide to change course, and the production people *did* make it happen! That's not luck! If you don't understand how remarkable all of that is, you've never worked for a huge company.

What you people all seem to be arguing for, putting all your eggs in one basket and having it work out as you'd planned -- *that* is luck!

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (4, Funny)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245173)

It sounds like terrific teamwork by engineering, production and management.

Oh, you mean luck!

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (1)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245179)

I'd hesitate to call that luck, let alone "really, really, really lucky". It sounds like terrific teamwork by engineering, production and management.

No, it was luck. That entire line of development was more of a skunkworks operation rather than the Official Direction. It was only when AMD's threat became reality and they started shipping products which Intel's Official Direction could not compete with that Intel scrambled around and found this little bit of great engineering that it had previously overlooked before. If the guys in israel hadn't been autonomous enough to be able to do their own thing for laptops, Intel would have had no where to start from in catching up with AMD.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (1)

puto (533470) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244935)

As much of a fan as I have been over the years of AMD the intel core line is nice, even it might be considered a rehash, it still runs cool and quick, and that is what the game is. all about.

Intel ran with the ball this time.

There 386 and 486 clones were great chips, and far better than their intel counterparts.

I remember the Cyrix k5, pretty sucky chip. Then the K6 first runs were hot dog cookers, and the first athlons generated a fair amount of heat as well. I just sunsetted an athlon 1.8 I bought some 5 years ago. Ran well, but a little hot.

Re:Buying ATI = idiocy (1)

corbettw (214229) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245053)

Fortunately for them, they have a massive marketing team and extensive manufacturing facilities, both of which AMD lack.

OMG! Someone on Slashdot praised a company's marketing team, if only in part, as the reason for their success. Heretic! /sarcasm

As always, luck is simply hard work (2, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245151)

The real deal is that Intel had some time ago cut back on R&D spending, and AMD made them pay for it.

Intel realized this, increased R&D spending, and voila - "luck" magically happened.

Do you think a company with tight R&D funding would have been having ANYONE look at older processors for potential? That's not luck, that's willingness to fund even avenues that might not seem like they have potential.

Get 'em while they're cheap (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244577)

Better grab those Intel processors while they're cheap, because once AMD goes under, you just know Intel will return to the good old days and jack prices up through the roof.

Must be nice having no competition in the market.

Re:Get 'em while they're cheap (3, Interesting)

mmullings (1142559) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244663)

This is what I loved about AMD. When I built a 100+ render farm, I was saving mega money on AMD CPU's. Same bang, less buck. And I strongly believe that AMD is the reason the Intel chips dropped in price so much over the last few years. Wont belong before we buy from Microtel....

Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (5, Insightful)

damonlab (931917) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244607)

I bought and recommended AMD products up until a few years ago. I did that then because they had the fastest / better CPUs on the market at that time. During the last few years I have went with Intel because they have the better products now. If AMD wants my future business, they need to come out with something that beats what Intel has.

Re:Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (4, Informative)

John Jamieson (890438) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244757)

Sure, but you are part of the 3% that buys leading edge products.(right?) As long as you are in the mainstream BOTH have strengths and weaknesses.

As long as you are buying a low-mid priced system, AMD competes with intel. If you are a gamer, all that really counts is the Video Card anyway.

And don't get me started on the Intel Chipsets... remember when they were king? Well, my Core2Duo Centrino laptop chipset has so many bugs... The video performance under Vista and Linux STINKS big time. (WinXP is decent, but not near AMD/ATI's level with the 780g chipset, that chipset rocks )

AMD is a bit weaker on Laptops now, they have new silicon coming that will change that.

 

Re:Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24245285)

"As long as you are buying a low-mid priced system, AMD competes with intel."

Maybe if you're talking ultra-bottom-barrel single core solutions. What does AMD have to compete with the $70 E2180? The $120 E4600? Right now you simply get more for the money with Intel. Two years ago it was different (hell, 1 year ago AMD was still competitive in some lines). As for the "GPU is all that matters" line, you still need a CPU in your computer, and getting a better chip for less lets you spend more on that GPU.

Re:Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger (2, Insightful)

avandesande (143899) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245335)

If this was true AMD would still be making money, but the fact is they have to discount their middle range parts below cost to stay competative with Intel.

Right now AMD cannot compete with Intel.

Doomsday? (4, Insightful)

Trayal (592715) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244623)

What's with all the doom and gloom predictions and massive stock declines every time one of the 'underdog' companies (AMD, Apple, etc.) has a rough year? These up and down cycles are a natural part of business. AMD still has a lot going for it, and a lot to offer, even if they don't currently hold the technological 'edge' in the x86 market. Given a few years, the picture between Intel and AMD may well switch again - unless too many investors bail out prematurely, of course.

Re:Doomsday? (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244761)

unless too many investors bail out prematurely, of course.

You answered yourself. Such doom/gloom FUD encourages investors to flee, bringing the FUD to fruition. I wouldn't be surprised to discover that Intel was connected to a lot of this kind of news.

Re:Doomsday? (3, Insightful)

tyler.willard (944724) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245135)

Such doom/gloom FUD encourages investors to flee, bringing the FUD to fruition.

There is only one case where fleeing investors, and thus dropping stock prices, affects a company: if they need to issue more stock to raise more capital.

Other than that the stock price doesn't hurt the company since it's already been sold (during the IPO).

Re:Doomsday? (1)

FredFredrickson (1177871) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244939)

I was wondering that too.. seems everybody here finds it popular to jump ship at the first sign of bad weather.

Enough time to turn around? (3, Interesting)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244631)

As it stands, it's pretty dire. The question is, can AMD turn around and match the 45nm process with a decent design before the Nehalem generation? I wonder that explicitly because the last bragging point they have is their interprocessor architecture and memory controller, which Nehalem matches. If Intel releases that and the rest of AMD's tech remains as disadvantaged as it is, watch for some of the 4-socket and above space that AMD still has some sway in move to Intel.

Re:Enough time to turn around? (3, Interesting)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244675)

My feeling at this point is that AMD is hosed. About the only thing we can hope for is that regulators block Intel from buying them when it finally becomes clear that the show is over. Any other big multigazillion dollar companies with a few billion to spend who want a chip manufacturer? I'd say IBM, but their interests seem to be elsewhere.

Re:Enough time to turn around? (2, Insightful)

PhysicsPhil (880677) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244753)

Any other big multigazillion dollar companies with a few billion to spend who want a chip manufacturer? I'd say IBM, but their interests seem to be elsewhere.

If AMD goes under, I'd bet the Chinese would take a crack at it. Being in such an important industry, government support for a multi-year development effort isn't out of the question.

That would be interesting.. (4, Interesting)

Junta (36770) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244829)

Though I doubt it would ever happen.

IBM buys AMD, uses circumstances to:
-Advance the fab capabilities of AMD generally (hopefully invest to actually keep up with Intel instead of lagging by a year or so)
-Release a Cell processor variant, replacing the PPC core with an x86 core.

It seems far fetched, but at the same time, the #1 supercomputer is already an AMD/Cell hybrid (two Cell processor packages for every AMD package). However, I wouldn't anticipate that core being any more performance than the PPC core, just a different instruction set. It *could* really cause some grief for intel if it caught on though. The ability to run Windows and games like normal (maybe with a penalty), but SPU enabled software could really make for some amazing media manipulation and incredible games.

Re:That would be interesting.. (4, Interesting)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245163)

If the fab tech is the biggest issue, TSMC or Chartered would be a natural match. They do contract chip fab for everything from DRAM to CPUs, including the XBox CPUs and some AMD CPUs (Chartered) and some of AMD's ATI GPUs and chipsets (TSMC).

It'd make sense that if you're keeping your equipment busy making stuff for a customer, you'd want to keep that revenue. The best way to ensure that is to start making the same products for yourself.

Re:Enough time to turn around? (1)

the_humeister (922869) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245005)

Microsoft?

What about the video cards? (1)

joshtheitguy (1205998) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244647)

Though the new series of ATI cards the HD 4870 are doing extremely well against Nvidia GX 260/280 in terms of price vs. performance right now.

Is this not even enough to save AMD?

Re:What about the video cards? (5, Insightful)

pdusen (1146399) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244709)

AMD is fine. They are having a rough spot that is worse than the ones Intel goes through due to Intel being far more diversified. People in these comments touting the death of AMD are being melodramatic.

Re:What about the video cards? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24245287)

Just wait until AMD releases a CPU that has an integrated ATI GPU per core. Seeing as GPUs spank current CPUs at floating point, this could make an incredibly powerful processor.

3GHz Phenom with integrated R700 GPUs to replace or supplement the FPUs in addition to whatever GPUs you have on your video card(s) = pwnage.

Re:What about the video cards? (1)

avandesande (143899) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245371)

AMD has always been in a bad credit position, and if you have been watching the financial news lately banks are pulling back on investment.

There is a very real possibility that AMD could go out of business now.

Re:What about the video cards? (2, Insightful)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244827)

the number of video cards sold vs. the number of CPU's sold is jsut a small fraction.

and considering the price distrubution of products bought - having the best on the high end doens't help too much as it is out of the price range of most computers sold.

so no - it isn't going to save them - while it helps - it willnot save by any means.

AMD (3, Insightful)

mlwmohawk (801821) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244655)

I love my AMD systems. What the hell? How can you have a GREAT product, market share, and blow it as often as AMD has.

I hope they can come back. ATI was such a mistake, EVERYONE knew it was, I shake my head at what passes for management or vision these days.

You just know the guys that destroy good companies get many millions of dollars while the stock holders get shafted and the stake holders get ignored.

Re:AMD (2, Insightful)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244883)

i agree buying ATI was amistake for AMD - i never in my mind would have seen that comming..

if nothing i would see AMD buying nVidia and Intel buying ATI. that to me seems like a better match up.

now Intel woln't use ATI chips on boards as that is supporting their competitor - so they forced Intel into competing the graphics market - which i will say they seem to be doing quite well with.

while i like ATI (alwasy have like their cards compared to nVidia - i liked that ATI designed and built the cards them selves - you got exactly what you though you where getting when purchaseing) at this point i am left wondering what to do. but i do know i am not going to the AMD camp again.. their defect rate is way to high for my sanity

Re:AMD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24244997)

Our courts failure to pursue the antitrust allegations against Intel until very recently plays a significant role in AMD's problems as well.
Have any of you, who keep spouting out off about AMD's financial blunders, ever stopped to think about how unfair market practices might affect a smaller company?

Re:AMD (4, Insightful)

Bjrn (4836) | more than 6 years ago | (#24245303)

ATI was such a mistake

If the future is an integration of CPU and GPU, ATI might have been a necessary, if expensive, purchase for AMD. Also note that what AMD got was not just the ATI graphic cards, but also the chipsets. The support chipsets were always AMD's week spot.

If I lost $1.2 billion... (5, Funny)

afabbro (33948) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244717)

...I'd try to think where I'd last seen it and look there.

In this case, AMD should be looking at 2005.

old CEO was from Motorola (4, Interesting)

Dan667 (564390) | more than 6 years ago | (#24244745)

The way they mis-managed their semi-conductor division pretty much made that the kiss of death. Great technology and good folks there at both AMD and Motorola, but folks that use to be Motorola Management might as well run around in a bunch of robes chanting for their ability to screw things up.

bunch of whiners... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24245187)

I offered to pay for the losses myself but they said they did not have change for my EUR 50,- .

Hector.

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