Ex-Altera CEO killed in bike accident

FPGA pioneer mourned

Broken CD with wrench

Former Altera chief Rodney Smith died last week after being struck by a car.

Smith, 67, was riding his bike on the famed Sand Hill Road when he was apparently hit by an 87-year-old driver, according to a report in the Mercury News. Police are investigating the incident and have yet to assign fault to either party.

Smith started at Altera - a maker of FPGAs (field programmable gate arrays) - in 1983 and spent 17 years as CEO. He retired as Chairman of the company in 2003.

"He had great energy and he was a strong leader," Altera said in a statement. "With his many interests and his attention to detail, he brought a breadth of important experience to the new company."

According to the Merc, Smith and his wife Mary have funded and taken part in clean-up efforts along the very stretch of road where he was killed. ®

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