There’s a pretty amazing article over at at Anandtech. It pretty much demonstrates all the good AMD’s secrecy and slick talk has done for the company.
“In fact, the more Intel changed for the better, the more it seemed AMD changed for the worse. Intel started bringing out better product, talking more about its plans for the future, and made a whole lot of sense in just about everything it was doing and saying. Meanwhile, AMD just seemed to freeze up; we got no disclosures of upcoming products [and] no indication of direction . . . .
” . . . we have had all of these questions answered by Intel without ever having to ask them. Once or twice a year, Intel gathers a few thousand of its closest friends in California at the Intel Developer Forum and lays out its future plans. We needed the same from AMD, and we weren’t getting it.
“When Intel was losing the product battle late in the Pentium 4’s lifespan, it responded by being even more open about what it had coming down the pipeline. When everyone doubted what Intel’s next-generation micro-architecture would do, Intel released performance numbers months before any actual product launch. AMD’s strategy of remaining guarded and silent while it lost market share, confidence, and sales simply wasn’t working. . . . Going into these meetings, in a secluded location away from AMD’s campus, we honestly had low expectations. We were quite down on AMD and its ability to compete . . .”
The article goes on to praise a few people responsible for getting what little is known out there, and picks up a few more tidbits, but again, AMD talks about just about anything except what people want to know.
Maybe one of the saddest things I’ve ever seen is a picture of a decidedly unanorexic, AMD
bouncer employee who apparently arranged for a demo, but, as the article put it, was “also the guy that prevented us from running benchmarks, and hid the Cinebench scores from us.
Now I’m not out to knock this particular fellow. He probably had to fight like a dog to get permission to do what little was done. But who are the boys in the bubble he had to fight, the people who didn’t even want to do the demo?
We are going from the pathetic to the pathological. Really, this is getting beyond control freak.
All this would be understandable if these K10s weren’t ready for prime time, but after it’s been leaked that the latest stepping yielded wonderful results, what’s the point in hiding?
Don’t certain people realize the tremendous damage that’s occurred to AMD’s image the last year? Do they like being widely considered to be lying, bumbling fools, or do they think this is incredibly sublime marketing?
Don’t they realize that this stonewalling culture of secrecy has only led people (and there’s growing sign this includes their own employees), to think the worst, not only about the company’s product, but the company and its management, too?
Again, if they don’t have the goods yet, this is understandable, if not exactly laudable.
But if they’ve got the goods now, this is just . . . sick. If you can’t trust your customers, they can’t trust you.