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back to article AMD foundry spin-off breaks $4.2bn ground

Global Foundries*, the chipmaker spun-off by AMD earlier this year, announced on Friday that it had broken ground on its $4.2bn manufacturing facility in upstate New York. The huge plant bucks the growing trend for chips to be manufactured in Asia, and it's a significant gamble for Global Foundries and its prime investors: AMD …

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Coffee/keyboard

Wise move

I don't think that Intel in the future will relieve any of the pressure on AMD e.g. by conforming to the EU fines and directives. The damage that Intel did to AMD processors and the brand name is irreversible. In addition, AMD/ATI graphics chips everyday lose more and more faithful users, because on the one hand the company refuses (or can't afford) to invest developer time on proper drivers for the new GPUs and on the other AMD opted to call perfectly capable hardware as "legacy" in order to avoid long-term support. Even Linux users are most disappointed, because the Catalyst proprietary drivers do not support those "legacy" GPUs on the new Linux builds at all (on my 4 year-old ATI powered laptop and my 2nd PC, Ubuntu 9.04 is still incompatible with Catalyst drivers).

Therefore I'm afraid AMD as a CPU and GPU designer does not stand many chances to survive, unless they make a real break-through in extreme low-power systems on a chip (integrated CPU/GPU) that might power the emerging new types of hardware (like the rumored iTablet or next-gen netbooks/smartphones).

The new foundry is a wise move, probably signaling a shift in the main activities of AMD from products to (chipmaking) services. I just hope that it will perhaps also provide a smooth job exit route to some of its employees.

AMD is pressing Esc, although there is no escape: the one Ring is destined (with a little help of foul play) to rule them all.

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Happy

What do you call it?

The author writes, "The company itself insists on GLOBALFOUNDRIES, which is simply silly. But so is Globalfoundries. We could go the standard tech-talk InterCap route and call it GlobalFoundries, but we've decided - for now at least - that simple is best: Global Foundries."

As a reader, I would prefer not to have a long word screaming at me in caps. Most people don't mind short words (i.e. acronyms) all in caps (i.e. IBM, HP, etc.)

As far as doing searches, I can understand why the company desires to have publishers use it's full one-word name.

If the full one-word (all in caps) is the name of the company, and it is trademarked, not using the trademarked name could be a trademark violation, under the law. Refusing to use a single word name could be considered damaging against the company, since it's trademarked name is being willfully watered down.

From a reader's perspective, perhaps the single word "InterCap route" calling the name "GlobalFoundries" is the best solution, since little damage to the company is done by making text searches less viable for the company when the possible trademark is disregarded. Most search utilities are probably case insensitive, unless a case sensitivity option is selected.

Other publishers, although not all of them, have chosen this route.

http://www.sectorspdr.com/news/?do=newsStory&stype=db&newsID=6523007

http://technologyexpert.blogspot.com/2009/03/intel-threatens-amd-licenses-after.html

http://www.techspot.com/news/33795-amd-chip-making-spinoff-launches-as-globalfoundries.html

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Unhappy

Well if they want a 3rd fab...

... then there's an abandoned one near me that I'm sure everyone would be very happy to have reopened.

See http://www.thecourier.co.uk/output/2009/07/11/newsstory13438963t0.asp

or

http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?hl=en&ie=UTF8&ll=56.074766,-3.391685&spn=0.016622,0.055189&t=h&z=14

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Legacy as in AGP?

@ UBFusion, well I don't know about linux, but AMD/ATI posts Catalyst AGP drivers with every new driver release, they are here: http://support.amd.com/us/kbarticles/Pages/CatalystAGPHotfix.aspx

And if yer GPU is 4+ years old you wont gain much/if anything by running the current nosebleed drivers anyways, and likely will get better performance with older drivers that were specifically catered to when that line of GPU was in its heyday.

Nvidia does no better on the driver front. And they abandon hardware left right and center. Ask anyone with a Nvidia Nforce 2-4 mobo chipset (like myself) (Of which my Nforce 3 is less than 4 years old, and they manufactured a chipset that fails if you use a Dual+Core). Nvidia also abandons their GPUs, my 7600GT that is a little over a year old and now useless due to faulty GPU and severe pixelation - and even if it wasn't -- it is no longer supported by the Driver releases.

AMD may have some financial woes, but at least they're honest and support their hardware. Just look at the new AM3 Chips coming down the line that are pin-compatible with AM2 boards.

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Thumb Down

Desperately seeking industrial production

I remember the major struggle for governmental aid which localized fab1 to Dresden in 2003. Saxon county and German government raised around 1Bill USD, which made AMD decide to expand their current fab in Dresden. Unless any government/county raise around 30% of the cost and promise massive tax-deductions it is impossible to get any hi-tech production industry into Europe/US. All the accumulated jobs are all being paid for up-front.

Why not rather share 1.2Bill USD on 6000 persons and let them set up their own enterprises.

I rather go for research, development and services with massive investment deductions (aka 85%) which will lay the foundation and probably result in industrial production.

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Silver badge

Re Desperately seeking industrial production

By Morten Bjoernsvik Posted Sunday 26th July 2009 19:58 GMT

Morten,

Now that the Quantitative Easing/Printing of Wealth Scam/Facility is Outed and Running Amok in the Open and Making a Mockery of Savings and Banking, is Knowledge/Information/Intellectual Property the New Wealth Producer and Control Generator, which is why the Battles in CyberSpace are All about Denial of Access to Running Intelligence Programs and the Injection of Code to XSSXXXXually Overwhelm [and how Pleasant can you Imagine that to be Enjoyed] the Past's Parasitic Pretenders to the Throne of Absolute Power, for the Love of Money has proven itself to be an Easy Route to the Root of All Evil? And only shared as a question so that one is freely afforded the Opportunity to Think.

Having Money doesn't magically Produce Intelligence along with ITs Guarantee of Future Security, as the Oil Rich States in the Middle East, to name but one hostile region, all to clearly shows and can testify to, but it most certainly can buy IT in for you to Ensure an Endless Assured and Insured Supply of All Four .... Money, Intelligence, IT and Future Security .... and therefore also, Practically Anything and Everything Else.

And give the Present Parlous and Chaotic State of Affairs in above cited region today, it does have one Wondering and Pondering on the Pathetic Sub-Prime Quality of the Intelligence being Supplied to them ..... and one would have to Question their own Intelligence in their Continuing to Pay for it [with the Acceptance of Currency Debts and Treasury Bills] whenever it Delivers Nothing of Lasting Value in Return. Financing a Ponzi is a Self Destructive Meme, is it not.

The New and NeuReal Modern Fab Facility is a Socially Mobile Agent, well able to Converse in the Native Tongue of Universal Understanding, in Order to Allow for the Injection and Infection of Greater Human Perception into the Human Food Chain/Consciousness Stream and that is not dependent upon Geographic Location but rather more on Semantic Connection .... which must make Dresden, which is in the Centre of European Nations a much more Aware and Versatile and Flexible Proposition for Controller Chip Fabrications, despite the building of other locations.

And the Teutonic Psyche does have that most certain je ne sais quoi which Delivers Excellence of Performance in Spades, with a Track Record Second to None. Or are we to Imagine IT is a Deliberate Myth?

Methinks some would be saying that upstate New York is more desperately seeking industrial protection than production with its overtures to the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and AMD.

Hmmm? :-) The Emirate of Abu Dhabi and AMD? Now there's an InterNetional Novelty which could Easily dDeliver Intel XXXXtraordinarily Rendered into their Global Foundries for Control of Power.

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Go

Name?

gLOBALfOUNDRIES, surely, as a mick-take.

Or, a small Chimpzilla would be a Bonobozilla, which rolls nicely off the tongue.

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