Other things not related to AFDS…

Weekly S|A roundup

Flaming WaferThis week was a surprisingly busy one with AMD’s Fusion Developer Summit taking the center stage in the news. Charlie and I were lucky enough to attend AFDS and bring you a few articles from that event. It was a lot fun and I think it would fair to say that AFDS was a success, considering that it was the first event aimed at software developers by AMD in quite sometime. AMD’s annual TFE event is also being expanded to cover software development so look for some interesting stories from that event in early October.

The weekly S|A roundup has moved to a Monday release date! (ROFL, it’s Tuesday) Thanks for your readership and insightful feedback over the last quarter that has helped us continue to refine and consistently improve the roundup. If there is a story that you think is worthy of the roundup feel free to make a post in the roundup thread or contact me at thomas at semiaccurate dot com. Now to what you really care about; burning bumps, blasted wafers, and a little bacon, but no baco bits (TM).

AMD - logo

It appears that AMD’s CEO search is well on it’s way, with Bloomberg reporting that four candidates have turned down the position already. Ranging from ex-HP CEO Mark Hurd, to the Carlyle Group’s Managing Director Greg Summe it appears that AMD’s cast a wide net in its CEO search. Look for an official announcement about AMD next CEO during the second quarter conference call.

Fudzilla’s Peter Scott is reporting that AMD’s desktop Llano parts are going to slot in at the $150 price point and scale down from there. This lines up AMD’s high-end quad core Llano part up against Intel’s dual core i3 2120, I smell a deal. Gigabyte also released a list of its upcoming A75 and A55 motherboards and VR-Zone is reporting that a June 30th launch is in store for desktop Llano. It seems that AMD’s expecting Llano’s graphics power to be more of a factor in the mobile market than the desktop market, as evidenced by their pricing structure. I, for one, can’t wait to see how this one plays out.

Kyle Bennett’s review of AMD’s new A-series of mobile APU’s takes the win for most useful Llano review. It seems that Llano is powerful enough to run most games at 1366 by 768 and even managed to run Dirt 3 with 8X MSAA. That’s pretty impressive for a mobile platform, and while he did note some performance issues in Bad Company 2 and F1 2010 he attributed them to software immaturity rather than a hardware issue. On a side note it seems that AMD is trying to translate (pun) Llano’s mobile success to its Opteron line with Xtreview reporting that a Llano based part is in the works.

Dual core Ivy Bridge samples started showing up this week. It appears that they will be slightly gimped compared to their quad core brethren with 4 MB of L3 rather than 8 MB. This continues Intel’s practice of scaling cache sizes with core count. It will be fun to see if the reduced cache size causes a significant performance per clock per core delta between dual and quad core Ivy Bridge chips in Q1.

Nvidia world icon

Xtreview is reporting more info on Nvidia’s Terga 3 or Kal-El. I wouldn’t take their word of a ten times performance increase or a doubling in efficiency at face value though. The way the article is written it sounds like their source is an Nvidia PR representative. Looks like the Tegra 3 PR campaign is getting into swing.

[H]ard|OCP did a Dirt 3 performance review this week and concluded that the AMD card worked best in this game, due to developer support from AMD, but Nvidia cards aren’t handicapped either. Also John Carmack  provided a very entertaining interview this week  discussing the future of id software and the possibility of a Quake reboot.

Tech Report’s Burno Ferreira put out an excellent list of the 10 commandments of PC games. It covers most of the usual spots where developers screw the PC gaming community, like dedicated servers, DRM, and LAN support. But I for one hope that game developers will look at this list as a rubric to decide whether or not they’ve properly supported the PC versions of their games.

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Thomas Ryan is based in Seattle, Washington. Thomas first began to appreciate the wonders of the semiconductor industry while doing research on his previous favorite hobby, PC gaming. Having co- purchased his first computer at the ripe old age of 11, with $150 and the help of Craigslist he's been buying and building computers ever since.