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Anand Tours ATI and NVIDIA

CmdrTaco posted more than 11 years ago | from the i-like-video-yes-i-do dept.

Hardware 220

logicalstack writes "The folks over at AnandTech have written an expose on their visits to both ATI and NVIDIA. Interestingly enough ATI's facility shrouded in secrecy and NVIDIA's is quite open, Including full color pictures of their server farm, and a pic of the NV30 test machine the 'Ikos.' The CEO even showed off the old school NV1 with 1MB of ram!"

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early post (-1, Offtopic)

Hall and Oates (575706) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319446)

happy tuesday!

WAR!!! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319510)

We're going to war with Iraq! Fuck all you commy hippy pacifist bastards!
"We must keep moving. Do not sit down. Do not say, 'I have done enough.' Always see what else you can do to raise hell with the enemy. You must have a desperate determination to continually go forward." General George S. Patton

2nd post (-1, Offtopic)

sharph (171971) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319448)

2nd post

w00t. so. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319450)

anything worthwhile there even? nv1 is sure cool and all.. but.. 1st post.

Here's the real link (4, Informative)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319452)

Here [anandtech.com]

Re:Here's the real link (2, Funny)

Night0wl (251522) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319540)

I was wondering where it was my self.
It's like the damn submitter thought we would know where to find it at anand tech, and what's this "the folks" Why is it I imagine a bunch of geeks all wearing heard hats of one color with nvidia or ati's logo on it, Being lead around by an older fellow with a diferent color hardhat.
Right, a tour group, It was probably just one guy who payed the guard 20$ and a bottle of jack to be let in after hours....

I like Hard|OCP's tour of gainward. They manufacture there video cards two to a PCB and cut them down the middle. That would be cool to build two systems which where connected by the unsevered agp card.
Like some freak siamese twin, "And here is Tommy and Timmy, identical twins sharing the same GPU'

Low Bandwidth Version (1)

Evro (18923) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319630)

Printable/Low bandwidth version [anandtech.com]

Though this has no banner ads, so Anand doesn't get any money if you view this one, but take your pick.

Re:Here's the real link (1)

ReelOddeeo (115880) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319723)

Maybe Anand would have a hissy fit over deep linking?

Quality Issues with Slashdot (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319455)

Q: There is a lot of comment that gets posted that falls below the threshold line. How are you developing that technology to deliver comments so that readers get some information out of the boards?

A: We have a constant problem with people who are trying to break our system for no other purpose than they have nothing better to do--like their bosses haven't assigned them enough to do at work today, or that their mom hasn't made them mow the lawn, in most cases! [com.com]

And by not providing a link to the story... (0, Redundant)

Teancom (13486) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319463)

You've garunteed that someone reading this story next week will not be able to find it! *Please* provide an actual link to the story. Surely I'm not the only one that reads slashdot in batches weekly, instead of rabidly refreshing the front page every hour? I'm lucky to have caught this one early....

For posterity [anandtech.com]

sorry (0, Redundant)

logicalstack (610931) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319632)

i didnt realize, illl make sure i do it right next time.

The link (2, Informative)

chrestomanci (558400) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319466)

Direct link to the article [anandtech.com]

No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (0, Flamebait)

Lord Nougat (31119) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319484)

It's sort of a good example of the benefits of sharing information:

Interestingly enough ATI's facility shrouded in secrecy and NVIDIA's is quite open...

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (5, Insightful)

Pulzar (81031) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319518)

Try reading the article:

ATI imposed very strict restrictions on photographs during our visit to their offices in Thornhill, Ontario; we saw a lot of interesting things at ATI's offices (including the foundation for their fountain of fire in the lobby of their main building) but we weren't able to take pictures of most of them. On the other hand, ATI sat us down with one of their chip architects and we were able to get a wealth of information about how their GPUs were made.

NVIDIA wasn't able to set us up with any engineers for an extended period of time (although lunch with Chief Scientist, David Kirk is always informative) but they were much more lax on the picture front so we were able to bring you more of the behind the scenes from NVIDIA.


ATI just didn't want anybody taking pictures, but they were the one sharing the real information.

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (2, Funny)

Profane Motherfucker (564659) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319634)

Exactly. I was quite fucking floored after the claim that ATI was 'shrouded in secrecy." They let a bunch of fucking people tour their facility. How the FUCK is this shit fucking shrouded?! Sounds pretty fucking open to me. Sounds like the fucking opposite of shrouded.

The picture thing I can understand. Maybe the intern has some saucy shit up on the screen and didn't read the motherfucking memo close enough to note that some fucking strangers were walking around the place ready to snap a billion digi cam photos.

Fucking christ on a moped: who give a fuck what the nVidia server farm looks like? I don't recall buying a video card based upon the size and configuration of some fucking SERVERS.

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319651)

God, that was fucking hilarious. :)

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319696)

Thank you. I try to avoid posting this early in the day because it enables the profane mode for my verbal communication. Every other fucking word is fuck, cocksucker, shitsniffer, etc... but since I work with paving crews and rugged dirty motherfuckers like that, it's not too big of a deal.

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319948)

No it wasn't. It was fucking stupid.

Could be circumstances (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319695)

ATI can give out tons of info on the 9700.

NVIDIA's NV30 hasn't been released yet so there's not as much info to give out (yet).

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319756)

Most of what was actually said in the article however is information that could be picked up elsewhere. There was a complete lack of technical specifications beyond that fact that ATI is using HDL's to do their initial hardware designs. This is hardly sharing information. In fact it is like saying that Windows2000 is written in a high-level programming language. You can learn more about chip development by doing a google search than reading the article.

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (1)

PainKilleR-CE (597083) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320153)

ns, most of the pictures from the nVidia visit were of things discussed in the ATI visit. Even if they had gotten an equal amount of information from nVidia, it would've been the same thing with minor details changed.

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (4, Interesting)

h0tblack (575548) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319854)

I fully agree. Last year I was at GDCE doing research at tying to get info from both ATI and nVidia for articles I was writing. all the people from ATI I met were fantastic, I spoke to a few of the heavy engineers (huge kudos to Alex Vlachos and Jason Mitchell) along with the PR and Product Management people. They all went massively went out of their way to help me and inform me, answering any questions I had, burning me cd's of demos, pics, info, etc and following up further technical questions via e-mails and phone calls after the conference was over. This was the overall attitude of ATI at the conference.
Next we come to nVidia, I repeatedly came up against a brick wall, the case was the same for other developers, with David Kirk doing a fine politician-style non-answering of questions after his presentation. You generally got the impression that there were a select few that may be lucky enough to be given certain information, but it was very much on nVidia's terms.
Fair enough, companies have secrets which they need to keep, but from my experiences with the companies, ATI are far far more open. If anything this article backs that up. Would you prefer a bundle of photos or a chance to talk with a variety of the actual engineers?

Re:No wonder Nvidia is largely considered better! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319524)

Who cares about the "openness" of the facility?
NVidia's card specifications are shrouded in secrecy, whereas the specs to ALL ATI cards are freely available.
Get a clue about what matters.

IKOS is a company that makes gate arrays (3, Interesting)

Amnesiak (12487) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319490)

NVIDIA programs their GPUs into the IKOS [ikos.com] boxes and they run what is effectively a very large NV30 at very slow speeds. Very cool and very expensive.

When I was there a few years ago, they would sometimes hijack all the desktops in the company for more power. If I remember correctly, they would boot them into linux at night and make (slashdot cliche imminent!) a beowulf cluster!

-Greg Daly, formerly of riva extreme, aka

NVIDIA open? (0, Insightful)

tps12 (105590) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319501)

If NVIDIA is so open, how come they still have binary-only (and buggy) Linux drivers? I could give two shits about full color pictures of their server farm when X crashes so much that I may as well be using Windows.

Re:NVIDIA open? (5, Funny)

jmu1 (183541) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319536)

Hear hear! I refuse to use Nvidia based on that fact. I have an ATI Radeon 7200. It may not be as fast, nor may it be quite as good, but at least I'm not putting proprietary software on my machine when there is an alternative.

Re:NVIDIA open? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319575)

but at least I'm not putting proprietary software on my machine ... $20 says you'll use your ATI card to play Unreal Tournament 2003 or [Insert name of *proprietary* game you like here].

Let's hear it for the hypocrits! Hear Hear!

Re:NVIDIA open? (2)

Yohahn (8680) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319645)

Perhaps he uses it to play Billardgl [billardgl.de] ? Perhaps the free part of Tux Racer [sourceforge.net] .

I know, I bet it was to play Tux Kart [sourceforge.net]

Hrm... Maybe we can't assume he's playing closed games?

Re:NVIDIA open? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319673)

Hahahahah... OMG my sides are hurting. Hahahahahahahhaahahahahhahahahahahahahah... Please, tell me another one. Tux Racer! AHahahahahah.. That's the best one I've heard in years. Ahahahahahahahahah.... stop it! I can't take it any more. Ahahahahahahahahahahahahaha...

Re:NVIDIA open? (1)

EnVisiCrypt (178985) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319676)

If he wants to play good, up-to-date games, he'll be playing closed source games.

Re:NVIDIA open? (2, Funny)

Yohahn (8680) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319691)

Define up-to-date?
Do you mean, same gameplay, more realistic graphics?

Please, (and I really mean this) Gaming industry, give us some kind of new game. It's just the same crap over and over and over. Like TV Sitcom's the games produced these days are stuck in a rut.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319718)

Define up-to-date?

It means current, recent, new, not outdated.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319757)

Define it in the context of this discussion you dolt!

Re:NVIDIA open? (1)

Anonvmous Coward (589068) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319824)

"Define it in the context of this discussion you dolt!"

hahaha you got burned!

Re:NVIDIA open? (1, Offtopic)

jmu1 (183541) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319674)

Hey, if you could read, you would know what the rest of that sentence said.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319687)

Hey, if you could read, you would know what the rest of that sentence said.

Oh that's right... "when it's available." So you only stick to your principles when it's convenient to do so. My bad.

Re:NVIDIA open? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319700)

Hey, the cocksucking faggot can't read!

when there is an alternative.

Sure doesn't look like "when it's available".

Re:NVIDIA open? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319748)

Hey, the cocksucking faggot can't read!

Aww... Look at the cutsie wootsie little Winux Zealot.. Him's getting all upset...

when there is an alternative.

That's what I said. You only stick to your principles when it's convenient to do so. If there's no alternative, to hell with the principles! I'm going proprietary!

Re:NVIDIA open? (-1, Offtopic)

jmu1 (183541) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319767)

Hey look! They're serving Hot Grits over by the topless statue of Natile Porman! Go troll, be gone from this place!

Re:NVIDIA open? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319783)

Hey look! They're serving Hot Grits over by the topless statue of Natile Porman! Go troll, be gone from this place!

I'm going to cost you a small fortune in Karma. Bwahahahahahahah. And I know you care... bwahahahahahahaha

Re:NVIDIA open? (2)

ShavenYak (252902) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319681)

$20 says you'll use your ATI card to play Unreal Tournament 2003

On Microsoft Windows, of course. 'Cuz last I heard, the ATI cards won't work for UT2003 on Linux. Mind you, this may have changed, and I speak not from experience as I still have a shitty Rage 128 in my machine (hey, it handles Q3 and RtCW fairly well).

I'm trying to decide between upgrading to a Radeon 8500 or a GF4-Ti4200, and I'm leaning toward the GF4 because I'd rather have a proprietary binary driver that works than an open-source one that doesn't. So if anyone has had a good experience running a Radeon 8500 under Linux (especially with UT2003 demo, either the open-source dri driver or ATI's binary release), please let me know.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319702)

I'd rather have a proprietary binary driver that works than an open-source one that doesn't.

According to jmu1, the morally correct thing to do is to use the broken driver... since it's available.

Re:NVIDIA open? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319537)

Here here!

Re:NVIDIA open? (4, Informative)

Nothinman (22765) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319543)

They're binary-only because they don't own all the code used in them so it would break other licenses to publish it.

I use those binary-only drivers myself with a GF3 and have had no problems with X crashing.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319577)


I am sick and tired of hearing people say "it works for me". When a binary driver dosen't work for somebody it hurts us ALL.

Even a friend who went to SIGRAPH said that the poeple from nvidia said "oh, those crashes should be gone now". It still dosen't work. This is remaniscent of IS departments that think they are more important than the departments they are supposed to work for. If it isn't working for the customer, it dosen't matter what is going on with your setup.

I work at a place that used to produce binary drivers for linux. We were able after a time to remove the binary driver requirement, and now our device is supported in the Liunux kernel. Why can't nvidia at least do this for its older cards.

Re:NVIDIA open? (3, Insightful)

Nothinman (22765) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319731)

But they work find for the majority of the people that use them. I'm not saying their drivers are perfect, but I'd be willing to bet that the nearly all the people complaining of them crashing are having problems with something else.

I'm glad you could publish your drivers under the GPL, but not everyone is and I'd rather have closed drivers that work well for me than no drivers at all.

Re:NVIDIA open? (2)

fault0 (514452) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319737)

> Why can't nvidia at least do this for its older cards.

Because NVIDIA has a unified driver architecture. ATI is trying to do this too now. Actually, they started doing it with the 8500, but they rewrote the drivers for the R200, and broke 8500 compatability, which means unified drivers for anything past the R200.

it hurts us ALL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319892)

Go buy a Mac, whiner.

Re:NVIDIA open? (1)

AlgUSF (238240) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319973)

I have no problems with my GF4 card either. Linux (kernel et. al.) would lock up if I had APM enabled, but I after I disabled APM sweet perfection.

Re:NVIDIA open? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319612)

Except they're not buggy, they don't crash, and you've trolled ATi saying so in previous posts. If you're going to troll, at least keep with the same story and don't play both sides.

Binary only my ass (1, Funny)

fatwreckfan (322865) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319649)

Do you look before you post?

Nvidia's driver page [nvidia.com] clearly has source tarballs for the GLX and kernel drivers.

Nevermind, I'm the idiot (0)

fatwreckfan (322865) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319666)

:P

Re:Binary only my ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319675)

Did you also read the license agreement [nvidia.com] ? Part of that driver is a precompiled object file. Do you look before you post?

Re:NVIDIA open? (5, Informative)

Zathrus (232140) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319667)

Well, I suppose we could go over the reasons for the billionth time on /., but there's no reason to believe that you'll listen this time either.

Oh well. Here it goes anyway.

The primary reason is that they cannot. They do not own all of the code that is in the drivers. There are extensive cross-licensing agreements between nVidia and SGI, dating back to the creation of nVidia from a bunch of ex-SGI engineers and the ensuing lawsuits. A good bit of the core code in nVidia drivers is essentially owned by SGI. nVidia cannot release that code. Period. End of story.

The secondary reason is that there is reason to believe that there are trade secrets in the drivers. Why do most people still favor nVidia over ATI? Because of the drivers. They work damn well most of the time, and the drivers you download today still support the original TNT. Additionally look at the GeForce4 and the Radeon 8500. On paper the Radeon 8500 was superior, and yet the GF4 beat it in benchmarks consistently. Why? The drivers. They were more mature, better written, and streamlined.

Don't like the situation? Fine, don't buy an nVidia card. What? Nobody else has 3d acceleration worth a crap? All the other drivers are just as unstable and slower too? Well, gee, maybe there's more proof that nVidia knows what the hell it's doing. Yes, it sucks if you're a *BSD fan or something else such that the binary-only drivers aren't usable, but, again, nobody made you buy nVidia.

Frankly, nVidia has spectacular Linux support. They release the Linux drivers within weeks of the Windows drivers and they're pretty damn stable (frankly, I suspect that if you have continual issues here that it's some other piece of hardware being marginal and pushed over the limit by running the card at full functionality). Oh yeah, and they're fully functional... don't forget that little bit.

It's really sad to see people whining for Linux support, getting pretty damn spectacular support, and then whining that it's not good enough. No wonder most manufacturers don't bother - damned if you do, damned if you don't. So why spend the time and money on a marginal market if you're just going to get roasted anyway?

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319742)

Exactally the same line as always.

It works for me, so the support must be spectactular.

Never opening the drivers for even the oldest cards they have. Propreitary problems are their own.
Do you really think something they have in their software drivers is so ingenious? I doubt it.

Isn't the latest ATI card beating the NVIDIA cards [theinquirer.net] ?

The drivers for ATI may suck in windows, but work perfectly well in X11. Ask anybody if they have the crashing problems with the X11 ATI drivers and compare the number of problems with the NVidia responces. This is what open drivers do for you.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319794)

They work damn well most of the time, and the drivers you download today still support the original TNT.

The Detenators now only support down to TNT2. You have use older versions for TNT - not that it matters. :)

Re:NVIDIA open? (2, Informative)

dinivin (444905) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319817)

Once again, FUD... I've posted this before, and I'll post it again:

SGI has stated, on a number of occaisions, that they are not responsible for the closed nature of nVidia's driver and that they have, in fact, tried to push nVidia into opening the drivers...

Please learn all the facts before posting that crap again.

Dinivin

Re:NVIDIA open? (2)

Tuzanor (125152) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319886)

Linux is for those who love UNIX. BSD is for those who hate Linux.

I believe the statment really goes:
Linux is for those who hate Microsoft, BSD is for those who love UNIX.

Considering that BSD origonates from the origional UNIX, that makes more sense...but then again you are probably a linux zealot who thinks RMS is some sort of man god...

Re:NVIDIA open? (1)

dinivin (444905) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319963)


Actually, I really dislike the GPL and everything it stands for. What I dislike more, though, is the arrogance of many BSD users I see on here with the sig:

Linux is for those who hate Microsoft, BSD is for those who love UNIX.

Dinivin

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4320030)

Care to provide links with SGI stating it's not their fault?

Agree, agree, agree! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319895)

I can't tell you the number of hours I have WASTED trying to get DRI-GLX working with my various video cards (G400, Voodoo3 and Radeon). And even when it did "work", it did not work very WELL...usually resulting in a complete system hang.

But then along comes NVIDIA...I bought a GeForce4 Ti and was shocked and pleased to find FULLY FUNCTIONAL DRIVERS that actually WORKED, right off the NVIDIA site. Being a Woody user I was even more surprised to find that the NVIDIA Linux drivers worked with the ancient version of XFree shipped with Woody. No mucking with CVS snapshots, no rebuilding the XF86 source...just install and go.

It has been a long, long time since I've had working OpenGL on my system. I've NEVER had STABLE OpenGL on a Linux box until now. NVIDIA's drivers kick ass. Commercial support? HELL YAH! I could care LESS if they are binary-only drivers. In fact, having modprobe whine and tell me I'll be "tainting" my kernel by loading the Nvidia driver is downright INSULTING.

UT2k3 runs like a dream! I can use the GL modes of Xscreensaver! I can play Egoboo, BZFLAG, GLTron and crack-attack again! (Actually, Egoboo clocks in at over 200fps so it is too FAST to play :).

Re:NVIDIA open? (3, Interesting)

captaineo (87164) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320037)

I don't think SGI's old IP is the reason NVIDIA won't release source code. The real reason is that the drivers deliberately cripple certain advanced features on NVIDIA's low-end cards, to force "professional" users to buy their high-end cards.

Remember how the $600 Quadro2 hardware was exactly the same as a $200 GeForce2, except for a tiny little resistor? I'm sure there are a few places in the NVIDIA driver like:

if(user_paid_for_quadro()) {
make_antialiasing_fast();
enable_overlay_planes();
} else {
make_antialiasing_slow();
disable_overlay_planes();
}

So naturally a few days after they release the driver souce, somebody would provide a "magic" version of the driver that makes all of NVIDIA's low-end cards perform just like their high-end cards. Then they wouldn't be able to charge $600 for "pro" video cards anymore...

Re:NVIDIA open? (2, Informative)

Zathrus (232140) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320083)

This is certainly true for older hardware (pre GF4), and is again an artifact of the SGI cross-licensing with nVidia.

The GF4 chip is separate from the GF4 Quadro chip though - at least as far as pinouts go (it may be that the actual core is the same still, but fat lot of good that does if there aren't leads for the "professional" bits). The GF2/Q2 chips and cores were identical excepting a resistor, as you note.

There are also (allegedly, I certainly have not confirmed this) SGI-only features in the core. I can't imagine that these functions would be exposed at all in public drivers though, so I can't see that being an issue.

Re:NVIDIA open? (open the spec, not the code) (1)

CaptnMArk (9003) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320053)

I can understand why they can't/won't release the code.

But there can be NO reason for not opening the full interface specifications for their cards.

Then the people complaining about binary drivers can write "better" open source drivers.

Re:NVIDIA open? (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320098)

the trade secret angle is, of course, completly off.
How can it be a trade secret when it will only work with there card? It's not like ATI is making the same chipset. If ATI wanted to know how there drivers work, they would know. Hell, I'd be surprised if the don't have a de-compiled version on there systems now.
That said, I am pleased with nVidia support. I even wrote them some letters when they first started doing it, to show my support.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319682)

sounds like a hardware problem, nvidia linux drivers seem very stable to me

hehe i didnt know there was source code for them either, this shows - dont believe everything you read (yes even on slashdot ;)

Re:NVIDIA open? (5, Informative)

fault0 (514452) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319715)

> (and buggy) Linux drivers?

You might want to try switching from nvagp to agpgart, or vice versa, depending on your mobo.

I went from agpgart->nvagp a few months ago, and suddenly most of my stability problems with the drivers were gone.

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4320013)

Care to post any links about this? Where can I find any info on nvagp?

Re:NVIDIA open? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4320015)

I could give two shits about ...

Could you really??? You'd better get on that toilet, then.

evidence (0)

dolo666 (195584) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319509)

ATI's facility shrouded in secrecy and NVIDIA's is quite open

This is evidence of NVIDIA's greatness. 3dfx might still be around if it weren't for better business systems analysis. NVIDIA is like a breath of fresh air when it comes to corp policy... etc.

Re:evidence (5, Insightful)

SirSlud (67381) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319559)

ATI was the company that provided the in depth talk with a chip engineer. With NVIDIA, Andtech had to settle to having lunch with their lead architect. NVIDIA was okay with pictures, but ATI was the one that provided real information.

Re:evidence (2)

7-Vodka (195504) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319762)

actually, they said they had lunch with the CEO. Who I might add, works in a cubicle like the other employees. Wanna compare/contrast with ATI's CEO?

Re:evidence (1)

pcb (125862) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319852)

Was it not with NV's Chef Scientist?

Re:evidence (1)

pcb (125862) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319873)

Err..that's chief, not chef!!

Re:evidence (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4320140)

Yeah, but you have to like, read and comprehend and stuff. I'd rather just look at the pictures =)

Re:evidence (1)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319662)

BS.

This isn't evidence of NVIDIA's greatness, it's just a difference in business practices.

3dfx might still be around because they won a lawsuit against NVIDIA, but NVIDIA bought out 3dfx and killed support for people that had recent 3dfx hardware.

At least when Apple bought out Power Computing they threw up a webpage with some manuals and downloads.

NVIDIA screwed over those that bought 3dfx pure and simple.

NIVIDIA corporate policy isn't any better than anyone elses and in some aspect worse.

Re:evidence (1)

dolo666 (195584) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319688)

NIVIDIA corporate policy isn't any better than anyone elses and in some aspect worse.

Got any actual evidence? Linkage? etc.

Hey I feel for you. 3dfx was a sad company to see go, but if it was because of NVIDIA, it would be because NVIDIA makes way better products than 3dfx could. 3dfx was out competed.

Re:evidence (1)

PainKilleR-CE (597083) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320065)

3dfx might still be around because they won a lawsuit against NVIDIA, but NVIDIA bought out 3dfx and killed support for people that had recent 3dfx hardware.

nVidia didn't buy 3dfx, they just bought most of their IP and remaining chip inventory. The company (3dfx Interactive) itself shut down their manufacturing and cut off their users from downloading existing drivers.

'costly sun boxes' + the real link (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319535)

here [anandtech.com]

quote:" NVIDIA would love to move away from these costly Sun boxes altogether and transition to a much more affordable x86-linux platform, but the problem is finding a 64-bit x86 solution. NVIDIA is currently evaluating Intel's Itanium for use in their farm but as far as their needs go, AMD's Opteron would be a gift from God. NVIDIA is eagerly awaiting the launch of Opteron so that their dreams may be fulfilled with an affordable x86 solution that offers 64-bit memory addressability; until then, they'll have to stick with these million-dollar sun systems."

could someone fill me in why million dollar ibm(linux) systems aren't an option? no 64bit(!?????)
or other 64bit systems??

the pictures of those big computer racks sure make me drool.. i wonder how tight their security is...............

Re:'costly sun boxes' + the real link (3, Informative)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319562)

there are all kinds of 64 bit boxes, but not x86.
You've got AIX, Alpha, even the new Linux capable boxes from IBM are 64 bit but they are NOT cheaper than SUN.

Re:'costly sun boxes' + the real link (1)

AlgUSF (238240) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319869)

I would love to be their Sun sales rep. 11 SunFire 6800's....

Nice racks (5, Funny)

PygmyTrojan (605138) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319541)

I wonder how many people are looking at those pictures like the would a playboy centerfold?

Re:Nice racks (2)

paradesign (561561) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320084)

MMmmmmmm...... servers....
MMmmmmm...... fiber optics....
MMmmmmm..... chief engineer patty....

this is a joke, thank you, good night.

overclock IKOS! (1, Funny)

l33t-gu3lph1t3 (567059) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319566)

I wanna see some intrepid person use LN2 and overclock an IKOS NV30!

Once again...Slashdotted... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319601)

Did we fail to provide a mirror or some google cache?

I'm glad ... (0)

ciupmean (572454) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319650)

I saw this 3 DAYS ago (or 4, not sure) .. I wonder how small can the web be .. ;D

Other crap ATI has done (2, Funny)

SethJohnson (112166) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319657)



Since we're somewhat examining the corporate culture of ATI here, I'd like to relate an interaction I had with the graphics company at QuakeCon this year.


ATI was a major sponsor of QuakeCon. They put up prize money for many of the competitions. On the last night of QuakeCon, there was a party in a banquet hall where a band played and the Mr. Sinus Theater 3000 [mrsinus.com] guys performed some outstanding comedy. There was a pretty hefty line for beer. I was about 15 people deep in this line. A weasel employed by ATI (I know because I asked him afterwards if he worked for ATI) walked right past the line and asked the bartender for two beers. The bartender resisted and remarked that there were a lot of other people in front of him in line. He then said he was with ATI, a sponsor of the event. The bartender sold him the two beers. While in truth ATI actually hadn't sponsored the party is not of consequence. The real crime here is the lack of respect shown for potential customers of ATI. This was where ATI needed to seriously kiss some ass to gain respect & sales from a market dominated by Nvidia. What do they do? Cut in the beer line while wearing ATI polo shirts. I told that guy he was rudely representing his company and that I would take every opportunity to post critical rants against ATI on the interweb because of his behavior.

Don't cut in the beer line.

Seth

Re:Other crap ATI has done (0, Offtopic)

Andrewkov (140579) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319738)

You should have just beaten him up and stolen his beer!

Re:Other crap ATI has done (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319745)

I told that guy he was rudely representing his company and that I would take every opportunity to post critical rants against ATI on the interweb because of his behavior.

+2 on Slashdot.
You're a really big man.
What tremendous power you yield!
What did your polo shirt say?
"My other wife's my sister?"

Re:Other crap ATI has done (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319807)

First, you say:

ATI was a major sponsor of QuakeCon. They put up prize money for many of the competitions.

Then,

He then said he was with ATI, a sponsor of the event. The bartender sold him the two beers. While in truth ATI actually hadn't sponsored the party is not of consequence.

Make up your mind. On the other hand, maybe you just garbled that last sentence and they did sponsor it, period.

Who cares? Perspective, dammit! (2)

0x0d0a (568518) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319834)

I'm not quite sure how to put this, but you're presumably asking us to not purchase ATI products (since that's the only reason I can think of for mentioning this) because one of their drunk *engineers*, who we will *never*, *ever* see increased the amount of time until *you* got a blinking *beer* by fifteen seconds?

Hell, there's probably NVIDIA engineers who have done equally egregious things.

I'll bet Linus himself has pulled a fau paux once or twice. Should I not use Linux?

Isaac Newton was supposed to be somewhat of an asshole as well. Should we not use physics or calculus?

The original post was talking about a company policy regarding no photographs in a R&D lab. That's ludicrously generous. I've worked in an isolated R&D lab, and you do *not* get anywhere near anyone unless you have a damn good reason (sightseeing a la Anandtech doesn't count as a good reason).

Frankly, I think NVIDIA is simply crazy for letting people wander around and shoot photos, but that's just me.

Re:Other crap ATI has done (5, Insightful)

NerdSlayer (300907) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319847)

This is not meant to be flame, but it will be modded as such

This is the dumbest thing I've ever read. The situation you describe is not ATI selling you a shitty product. It's not ATI stealing from shareholders. It's not ATI killing your dog.

What it sounds like is some guy getting two beers without waiting like the rest of the tools in line. And you are one of the tools.

You see, this is one random guy who happens to be at a trade show, probably one he doesn't want to be at. He's been drinking. He's in a position of power, so he uses it to get what he wants. This is how the world works.

Now, insofar as my inflammatory comment about your status as a tool, let's review the facts:

1. You're at quakecon
2. You don't understand that life's not fair, and rich/powerful people get stuff that you don't.
3. You wasted your breath telling this guy off.
4. You posted a stupid rant on Slashdot.

No further questions, your honor.

Dude, this is Slashdot (2)

jcsehak (559709) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320094)

George Lucas could come over with a bunch of muppets and gang rape our mothers and we'd still go see the next Star Wars movie 5 times. That some guy cut you in line once isn't gonna make any bit of difference in our video card purchases.

Because (2)

geekoid (135745) | more than 11 years ago | (#4320122)

beer wants to be drank, free beer doubly so.

Thatsa great line, I should put it on a bumper sticker.

What all those computers do (3, Informative)

Animats (122034) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319671)

Mostly, they run Verilog simulations, probably using the Synopsis [synopsys.com] simulator. The design, written in Verilog, goes through a Verilog simulation generator, which generates huge files of C or C++ code, which is then compiled for the target machine. The farm of target machines can be almost anything that runs C, which is why you see all those different kinds of compute farms.

Storage (1)

CrackersnSoup (517698) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319750)

Each one of the cabinets pictured above were full of hard drives providing an almost unfathomable amount of storage to NVIDIA's servers

I can fathom it, How much storage DO they have?? They have 2.1TB RAM

Crackers`n`Soup

I find it ironic......... (1)

sawilson (317999) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319789)

That ATI was cloaked in secrecy, and NVIDIA was
very open considering the absolute opposite is
true when considering XFree support for operating
systems. And before someone replies, YES I KNOW
NVIDIA has some sort of corporate sob story for
why they do things the way they do. I don't
need to hear again why money ultimately is the
reason they/whoever can't be more open with
their/whoever's standards.

Re:I find it ironic......... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4319985)

Uh..What? And exactly what support has ATI given to XFree86 for their Radeon line? Absolutely NONE. Yeah you can fight with CVS DRI, you can rebuild XF86 4.2.0...and you still get only 40% of the functionality. Install the GATOS drivers and you might get about 70%. If you run ANY OpenGL stuff...well, be prepared to reboot your system after a solid system hang. ATI has left Linux Radeon users out in the cold.

Nvidia, on the other hand, has working and very stable drivers for XF86 right on their web site. And they work with XF86 versions back to 4.0!

Heck, even Matrox provided a binary of their HAL for the G400 series. 3DFX provided nice RPM's of their GLIDE stuff for Linux as well. ATI? Nothing. Zilch. Nada. Which perhaps is a good thing, given the horrible quality of their Windows drivers (that crash even in NON-3D accelerated games).

standard (1)

sewagemaster (466124) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319799)

most of the things they use and discussed in the article - methodologies/ tools they use, flow... etc etc are pretty standard - not just graphic chip companies, but pretty much all semiconductor companies. i was working at PMC-sierra [pmc-sierra.com] and that's pretty much what they do there.

i was surprised that nvidia opened up their arms and welcomed you since those guys were the most arrogant bastards at the career fair. they used to literally tell you to fuck off if you dont have a 3.5 GPA. now it's just a "you'll have no chance" comment from them - as if i would jump off a building if i cant work for them (but in times like this, we are dying to find jobs.)

i've had friends that worked there before giving nasty feedback about the people there of having to work overtime pretty much everyday and having to come in weekends all the time. ATI, for some reason never show up at job fairs in montreal.

like all companies you apply to online, you just get the normal immediate automated response from them that they've placed my cv on file and would contact me as soon as there's something available - which never happens.

Make CPUs/GPUs in your own home (0, Troll)

dev!null!4d (414252) | more than 11 years ago | (#4319890)

http://www.everything2.com/index.pl?lastnode_id=12 4&node_id=830440

"Now we've got semiconductor grade rods, 99.9999999999% pure. Smell them, touch them, caress them. Now, SMASH THE CRAP OUT OF THEM! Yes, you heard me. We need to refine those suckers some more! Melt that crushed up shit in the oven again. Remember, use small amounts. Introduce a single monocrystal grain of sugar into the melted silicon. This is your monocrystal seed that will found your new silicon nation. This will take a few days. You are permitted to take a few drugs at this point in time. There's still a long way to go but it's worthwhile. "
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