The Not-So-Odd Couple (9/23/99)

Motorola makes PowerPC chips that fuel our beloved Macs. AMD makes x86-compatible processors that run Windows (among other things) instead. Cobra versus mongoose? Hardly-- more like two great tastes that taste great together. Motorola and AMD have been buddy-buddy for a while now, ever since they struck a deal last year that gave AMD access to Motorola's nifty copper-chip technology while Motorola got access to AMD's process for making some kind of special memory chips. So while at first glance they may look to be strange bedfellows, it's really not all that bizarre a situation; after all, both companies are working hard to beat the pants off of Intel. And remember how weird it seemed when Apple and IBM joined forces with Motorola to form the PowerPC AIM alliance? That was way weirder than any kind of AMD-Motorola team-up.

So here's the latest buzz: the word on the street (and in a Bloomberg News article) is that Motorola may be looking to bolster its chip-making capacity by buying into AMD's new fabrication plant in Dresden, Germany. This Dresden factory is apparently going to be pretty enormous, and if AMD finds that it'd be sitting slightly idle due to possible lower-than-expected demand for the new Athlon processor, then they could raise some much-needed cash by letting Motorola rent out the place for a big chip-burning party. This is all rumor at this point-- at least, according to Motorola spokesperson Scott Stevens, who says his company currently has "no plans" to hire out AMD's kickin' new plant. But Scott Allen of AMD is open to the idea: "If we found ourselves in a situation with too much capacity, it might make sense to explore a partner."

Personally, we at AtAT are all for this plan. While Apple and Motorola trade barbs about whose fault it is, nobody's arguing that there just aren't enough G4 processors to fulfill the heavy demand for Apple's new personal supercomputers. If buying some time on AMD's gear can help Motorola crank out the chips Apple needs to ship more G4s, we say go for it. Even the "low-end" 400 MHz "Yosemite" models are drawing rave reviews from AtAT viewers lucky enough to get them, so the sooner Apple can get a high volume of G4s into the channel, the sooner they can pull out of this sudden earnings slump.

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From the writer/creator of AtAT, a Pandemic Dad Joke taken WAYYYYYY too far


The above scene was taken from the 9/23/99 episode:

September 23, 1999: Understatement of the week: Thursday was not a happy day for the stock market, and Apple didn't emerge unscathed. Meanwhile, Motorola cozies up to AMD in hopes of sharing a factory in Dresden that could help alleviate the G4 shortage, and the first report of shipping "Sawtooth" G4/450s surfaces...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 1800: Oh, The Humanity (9/23/99)   Mark our words-- a few years down the line, some daring young filmmaker is going to produce a film that will redefine the much-maligned "splatter flick" category. You can forget about I Dismember Mama, Dr. Giggles can take an early retirement, and Three on a Meathook will pale in comparison...

  • 1802: Shipping Now. Honest. (9/23/99)   Steve Jobs' Reality Distortion Field™ is a miraculous force, to be sure, and we're just glad that everyone's favorite iCEO uses it for good instead of evil. (Or does he? Insert ominous music here.)...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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