optimus, Microsoft, Intel, Itanium processor, Windows Server 2003, x86 processors, SuSE, Red Hat, Parametric superiority
In early 2003, Hector Ruiz (Ruiz), CEO of Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), was reflecting on how his company was faring in its battle with Intel in the 64-bit microprocessor market. Itanium, Intel's first 64-bit microprocessor had failed. Opteron, AMD's 64-bit microprocessor released in mid-2003 received strong performance reviews. Many companies such as Dell and IBM, which had been staunch supporters of Intel had announced plans to use Opteron. As Intel prepared itself for the launch of Itanium 2, Opteron looked well placed to face the challenge. But AMD also knew that a powerful player like Intel could never be underestimated.
Founded in 1969 and based in Sunnyvale, California, AMD had emerged as a global supplier of integrated circuits for the personal and networked computer and communications markets. AMD produced microprocessors, flash memory devices, and silicon-based solutions for communications and networking applications.
By the summer of 1969, Jerry Sanders (Jerry), who had left his job as director of worldwide marketing at Fairchild Semiconductor and seven others had been toiling for months to pull together their start-up. Jerry was confident of building a successful semiconductor business by offering building blocks of ever-increasing complexity to benefit the manufacturers of electronic equipment in the computation, communication and instrumentation markets. By September 1969, AMD had raised the money, it needed to begin manufacturing products. During AMD's initial years, many of its products were alternate-source devices, i.e., products obtained from other companies that were then redesigned for greater speed and efficiency.
This was called "Parametric superiority". To give the products a competitive edge, the company guaranteed a level of quality that was unprecedented in the industry. All products were made and tested to stringent standards, regardless of who the customer was and at no extra cost.
Despite a dogged recession in 1974-75, when sales briefly slipped, AMD's sales grew steadily. This was also a period of tremendous facilities expansion, including the construction of 915 DeGuigne in Sunnyvale, an assembly facility in Manila (The Philippines), and expansion of the Penang (Malaysia) factory. Later, new production facilities were built in San Antonio, and more fab space was added at Austin as well. AMD quickly became a major contender in the global semiconductor marketplace. By the end of fiscal year 1981, AMD had more than doubled its sales over 1979.
1] Hertz-the international unit for measuring frequency. It is equivalent to the older unit of cycles per second.