Computer Chess Club Archives




Subject: Re: Introducing "No-Moore's Law"

Author: Robert Hyatt

Date: 11:40:53 03/04/03

Go up one level in this thread

On March 04, 2003 at 13:03:23, Matt Taylor wrote:

>On March 04, 2003 at 00:24:27, Robert Hyatt wrote:
>>On March 03, 2003 at 22:33:57, Jeremiah Penery wrote:
>>>On March 02, 2003 at 23:24:16, Robert Hyatt wrote:
>>>>On March 02, 2003 at 22:42:59, Jeremiah Penery wrote:
>>>>>On March 02, 2003 at 10:17:08, Robert Hyatt wrote:
>>>>>>On March 02, 2003 at 00:33:11, Matt Taylor wrote:
>>>>>>>On March 01, 2003 at 20:10:49, Robert Hyatt wrote:
>>>>>>>>So if Intel ships 3.0 today, that's what I buy.  If they ship 2.8, that is
>>>>>>>>what I buy.
>>>>>That's exactly the point.  Why release the 3.0, when you'll buy the slower 2.8?
>>>>_what_ is "the point"???  if we believe your scenario, then it costs the same
>>>>to produce _either_ so their profit is the same whether I buy a 2.8 or a 3.0.
>>>Exactly, again.  Why should they produce the 3.0 today if they make the same
>>>profit from the 2.8?  As long as they're faster than the competitor, they don't
>>>need to be any faster.
>>I suppose it is time to give up, but one more time.  If vendor A produces a
>>processor at 2.5, and vendor B produces a processor at 2.55, I will buy the 2.55
>>processor, but only if it is close to the 2.5 in cost.  If Vendor B offers me
>>a 3.0, I will not only buy it, but I will pay _more_ because it is significantly
>>faster than the competition.  The wider the gap, the more I will pay.
>>I'm not sure why _that_ is hard to understand...
>>You can sell 2.55 at X dollars today, and in 6 months you can sell 3.0 at X
>>dollars since your competition is now at 2.95.  Or you can sell 3.0 today and
>>with the wider performance gap, you can widen the price.
>>Simple economics, IMHO.
>It also raises the prices on lower-clocked chips. Many people don't buy high-end
>because it's too expensive. By staggering release, Intel avoids bidding too low
>on the price of their chips. The desktop market is a -big- market. If Intel is
>able to make $10 more per chip, that's a lot of profit simply because of sheer
>sales volume.

I understand.  But they will make _more_ than 10$ per chip on the top-end as
the faster they go, the more folks are willing to pay.  Low end can stay where

>>>>>Because you're going to purchase anyway.  It doesn't matter to them if you
>>>>>purchase today or tomorrow, so long as you purchase.
>>>>But it _does_ matter whether I purchase their processor or their competitor's.
>>>_You_, and a huge amount of others, aren't going to purchase the competitor's,
>>>and Intel knows that.  They count on it.
>>False assumption.  If AMD's 64 bit processor runs as expected, I'll certainly
>>have at least one to see how it does.  And if it lives up to promises, I'll buy
>>more.  But until they widen the gap enough to get me to switch, I stay with
>>what has been working.
>>>>And I'm going to buy the fastest thing I can at the time I purchase.  If they
>>>>lag with clock speeds, I may well go with someone else.  And I believe they
>>>>know that.
>>>Funny then, that you've never had an AMD machine, since they were faster than
>>>Intel machines for quite some time.
>>As I mentioned, we _had_ a few K5 processors.  They left a _terrible_ taste.
>>I helped a Ph.D. student debug for a couple of weeks, only to find it was an
>>unreliable AMD processor.  Ran fine on equivalent Intel chips.  Not on K5.
>>We later find that that batch of K5's had some problems.
>>I haven't had that happen with Intel, even though I am aware of the original
>>P5 divide (FP) error.
>>>>>If they skip straight to the 5GHz, they miss out on your upgrade to 4GHz.  If
>>>>>they release speed grades more slowly, you're likely to buy the 4GHz AND the
>>>>Nope.  I'm going to upgrade once every 3 years.  If they are selling 5ghz, I'll
>>>>buy it.  If they lag at 4, and someone else has something faster, I'm buying
>>>The issue is that _nobody else has anything faster_.  Intel releases just enough
>>>to be faster than the competition.
>>If you believe Intel is that much better than AMD in terms of design and
>>fab, they why bother buying AMD as they _must_ be grossly incompetent to be
>>unable to keep up in speed?
>>I don't buy that myself...
>Who is to say that AMD isn't doing the same thing? Don't you find it a little
>peculiar that they both release new chips at the -same- time? It is almost like
>one waits for the other to catch up.

If AMD does it, they _are_ grossly incompetent, for obvious reasons.   #2 wants
out-do #1 to capture part of its sales share.  barely keeping up or falling
behind certainly
would question their marketing intelligence...

>>>>I do _not_ see any reason to "hold back" on the top end.  But this is an
>>>>argument that can _never_ be ended because there is no way to prove it.  You
>>>It's an argument that can never be ended because you absolutely refuse to admit
>>>that you're wrong about it.
>>Or vice versa?  pot, kettle?
>>You offer _zero_ evidence.  Engineers say they push as hard as they can.
>>You say they don't.  So why would I admit I am wrong when you offer _nothing_
>>to _prove_ that I am???
>>I can't find an engineer to support your theory.  Because it makes no sense from
>>any angle.  You might try asking a couple to see if you get different answers
>>from what I got.
>No, we say engineers report the limits to marketting, and marketting staggers.
>If they get you to buy a 2.8 instead of a 3.06, they haven't made any profit
>(yet), but Intel is also looking toward the long term.

This argument just doesn't work.  They have to capture _me_ today, when I am
ready to buy.  And then for 3 years, or 4 years, I am _not_ going to replace
machine unless some overwhelming requirement comes to the forefront that
forces me to upgrade for something other than obsolescence.

If they release 2.8 today, and that is the best around, I will buy it.  I will
_not_ buy
a 3.06 in 6 months.  Nor will I buy a 3.6 in one year.  I will probably buy what
are shipping in 36-48 months.

If they want to choose today between selling 2.8 and 3.06, they can do it and
make _more_
money simply by pricing the 3.06 higher, which they _are_ doing.  And those that
want the
fastest will pay dearly for it.  Delaying the 3.06 for a few months makes no
financial sense
whatsoever, unless you believe there are folks that upgrade every time the clock
jumps.  I'm
sure a _few_ do this, but not even .001% (and that would likely be a high

Now granted, if they want to sell a cadillac without leather seats today, at a
cheaper price,
and then start selling leather seats 3 months from now at a higher price, that's
ok.  But if
I buy one with cloth today, I will _not_ be buying one with leather in 3 months.
 They won't
sell me again for _many_ years.  The profit will be higher on the leather seat
version, so it
makes more sense to sell 'em _now_ at an even higher price than the non-leather
version and
let folks pick what they want and what they can afford.

I don't doubt that they _might_ delay a new chip to deplete old inventory.  But
when they
release 3.06 I do _not_ believe that they could ship 3.2 that same day if they
wanted.  It
just doesn't make financial sense.

> If they want you to buy a
>4.0, they want to widen the gap so you'll be more enticed. If the 5.0 had been
>available when the 2.8's were, you would grab the 5.0 instead of the 2.8. Given
>that you do have a 2.8, you're more likely to buy the 5.0.
>I think overclocking scenarios are quite interesting. If Little Tommy overclocks
>his Pentium 4 1.5 GHz (in the era of the 2.0 GHz chips) to 2.6 GHz, that is a
>lot of headroom. Perhaps 2.6 GHz is actually a little much and it's silently
>failing. Still, the chip was surely capable of more than 2.0 GHz. And what if
>this is commonplace?
>There really is nothing more than circumstantial evidence, but it seems too
>fantastic to be coincidence.

What about overclocking the _top-of-the-line_ chips?  That seems less successful
overclocking slower chips that are probably nothing more than remarked faster
chips off
the same fab line.  I've never said overclocking the "slow boys" is that bad
although there
is obviously risk.  But overclocking the front-line offerings seems unsafe.


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