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AMD grabs Itanic survivors

Drying out at Fort Collins

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The race to hire Fort Collins chip engineers is on with AMD bulking up its staff in the city by poaching Itanium engineers from Intel.

An AMD spokesman confirmed that the company has hired "some Itanium guys," including former Intel fellow and director of Itanium circuits and technology Sam Naffziger. All of the staff come from Intel's Fort Collins, Colorado site.

An Itanic brain drain is just about the last thing Intel needs with its struggling 64-bit chip.

Just last week, Intel SVP Pat Gelsinger described Itanium's performance in no uncertain terms to CNET.

"I'm not happy with our sales figures, I'm not happy with our execution delays, I'm not happy with our killed projects," he said.

Intel remains the only major processor maker not to have a high-end dual-core processor on the market. The dual-core Montecito flavor of Itanic should ship in the second half of 2006, after close to a year delay.

AMD's Itanic man grab could stall Intel's own effort to increase chip design personnel in Fort Collins. Last month, Intel revealed plans to add a "significant number" of Itanium staff in the next five years.

The ever vigilant Real World Technologies grabbed the Naffziger news first and has more on the situation here. ®

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