For years, ARM has been agitating to place its architecture in an increasing proportion of datacenter sales. And it has had some success. But the incumbent, primarily Intel, but x86 in general, has remained entrenched for a variety of reasons. Now, however, shifts in markets, technologies, and business alliances are changing the equation.

Market Shifts

The market shift is primarily about who does the buying. In the past, big server installations were predominantly located in large enterprises, companies with lots of employees, businesses, and data. Recently, much new server capacity has come from cloud service providers, which are effectively mega enterprises —…

Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

The United States is many things. That’s part of what makes it the United States: the disunity. We have been diverse since the beginning of colonialism, quarrelsome, fractious, barely able to hang together in order to not hang separately. This characteristic makes us both endearing and exasperating.

Early colonists fooled Native Americans over and over, inexplicably offering a friendly hand and then smacking them with it. What they were experiencing, though, was not the fickle loyalties of some frontier colonel, or at least not most of the time. What they were experiencing was the fickle loyalties of changing regimes, a…

Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger holds up a Ponte Vecchio “package,” a unified processing entity with 40 silicon “tiles.”

Last night, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger gave one of the most momentous speeches I’ve heard in my decades in the technology industry. It was so comprehensive and far ranging that it will literally set the pace for peers, rivals, customers, and suppliers for years to come.

Gelsinger, who recently returned to Intel after eight years leading VMware, was so energetic in his exposition and question-answering that he didn’t hesitate to grab the helm from George Davis, his CFO, on a tricky financial question (he did soon thereafter let Davis elucidate further on his points). …

TP-Link’s WiFi 6E offers, tantalizingly close but unreachable for the moment

Before the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in early January, I wrote a piece about how I couldn’t wait for products based on the new WiFi 6E standard. In it, I described how a mesh network based on 6E would be the cherry on top of my new installation, which would be based on Verizon FIOS as the wide area connection.

Well, everything went according to plan, except for the 6E gear. Vendors gave me the distinct impression that releases would come in the first quarter of 2021, and here are we, a few days from quarter’s end, and there’s just…

Well, folks, the stats are in, and we have them: the 25 most phished brands of 2020, picked up by anti-phishing tool INKY Phish Fence. As INKY protected users’ email accounts — catching phish all year long to keep them from wreaking havoc on their intended targets , email users — the tool kept track of brand impersonations.

Because of its broad footprint across many instances of business email compromise (BEC), Microsoft was unsurprisingly the most phished brand — by quite a stretch. …

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The algorithm Donald Trump applied to the policies of his predecessor, Barack Obama, was simple: anything Obama had done, Trump rescinded, canceled, or did the opposite. Joe Biden might be tempted to play turnabout with Trump, and in many cases that would make a lot of sense. In matters relating to areas such as the Paris Agreement on climate change, policies with respect to immigrants, and adherence to the Foreign Emoluments Clause of the Constitution, Biden would be perfectly correct in reversing course.

But, from an industrial policy perspective, it would be worth examining closely how to deal with China…

Comparing the blue channel map on the right with the green and grey ones in the middle and on the left, you can see how much more bandwidth 6GHz will introduce to the WiFi experience (Image: Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.).

Like many shoemakers, I should be ashamed that my children are running around barefoot. Actually, no. That’s a metaphor. It’s my communications infrastructure that’s running around barefoot. I’m a tech analyst with an embarrassingly ancient network and connection to the outside world.

How did it get this way? Neglect and time, as always, were big factors. Laziness was also in there somewhere. Hey, it was great in 2005 when I got Comcast cable. A few years later, I threw in an Arris cable modem and a LinkSys switch. Although most things in my office are connected by wired Ethernet (what’s…

A Portrait of Human Character

Decades ago, when I was hopping from continent to continent as an international marketing executive for a large electronics manufacturer, I developed a model of human character or personality, a portrait, if you will, specifying how we are similar and how we differ. Essentially, it went like this: 70% of who we are is shared among all people, 25% is cultural, and 5% is individual. A graphic of it would look like this:

In the current era, scientists compare how close homo sapiens’ genes are to, for example, those of chimpanzees (96%), cats (90%), or bananas (50%). This is not…

Sandra L. Rivera is executive vice president and chief people officer at Intel Corporation.

Updated Jan. 17, 2021

Intel Believes It Can Do Well by Doing Good

Last week, Pat Gelsinger came back to his alma mater to take the helm from Bob Swan. When Swan took over as CEO of Intel in 2019, he began to steer the company toward doing more activity directly in the public interest. This was not the sort of behavior one normally expects from a for-profit company in a capitalist society, but he seemed to be making some headway when the board replaced him with Gelsinger.

Gelsinger has deep knowledge of semiconductor technology (in comparison to Swan, who is a finance guy). While I have no doubt…

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

Qualcomm is a firehose of product and standards announcements these days. On Oct. 20, I think I received something like a dozen announcements of one sort or another. I’ve written before about how the company manages to maintain its focus, even when under great stress. And now that Qualcomm is out from under a heap of lawsuits, it’s back in full flower as a technological cornucopia.

Of all the possible choices of what to highlight from among various recent developments, I found the joint announcement by the company and a small firm named Jacoti to be the most compelling for…


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