Friday, October 11, 2013

Intel is a one-trick pony and is very afraid

According to this report,    after the AMD-Verizon Cloud deal, Intel "call[ed] in some of their pro-Intel media to write ..  FUD piece" against AMD.

 Intel is very afraid.

Why?

A convergence is going on in chips, but Intel is a one trick pony caught off guard. Intel is missing two major paradigm shifts. One on the client, and one on the server.

On the client front, Microsoft and SONY chose AMD not because they love Intel less, but because only AMD has the solution.

Intelers can brag that their Haswell chips are faster than the 8-core Jaguar in serialized compute load. That is probably true.

But "so what?" is the response from the engineering departments of Microsoft and SONY.


The future is about Visual and Parallel Computing on a single die. No Intel chip can match the 5TFLOPs commanded by GCN 2.0. And with HSA and OpenCL, applications can fully exploit the massive prowess of the APU (Accelerated Processing Unit). 

The situation is hopeless for both Intel and Nvidia.

Stranded in the intellectual property wasteland of GPGPU world, Intel has only one possible way out: getting help from Nvidia.

But even assuming that haughty Mr. Huang agrees to take over Intel's helm, an Intel +Nvidia combination will be too little too late. If you look at the recent benchmarks of AMD GCN 2.0 and Nvidia GTX 7xx, you note that the AMD chips is 2x faster than Nvidia in compute. That is a huge gap and that gap is enlarging.

On the server front, Intel is also missing a major piece of intellectual know-how. The SeaMicro Fabric is indeed revolutionary. The interconnects predating AMD Fabric bridged CPUs and memory banks, and the cloud was based on software virtualization of CPUs.

But the AMD Fabric changed the game, it virtualizes networks and hard drives in hardware, and share them among CPUs. Such technology should be the prerequisite for real cloud computing. 

The employment of Fabric technology will soon be written into the definition of Cloud Compute. Real cloud has fabric. Cloud without Fabric is an emperor with no clothes.

Now you understand, AMD has Intellectual Property assets in (1) CPU; (2) GPGPU; (3) Cloud Fabric, and Intel only has 1.

AMD has the complete set of DNA to father all kinds of custom products. Eager partners, such as SONY, Microsoft and Verizon, all contributed their own genes into their own brain children. And people generally love their own children more than adoptive kids.

Intel may tried to copycat the AMD model, but there is a problem: its only relative strength is in linear computing.

Intel is thus a one-trick pony, and it is afraid.

 








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