Apple admits to eating 'iPad chip designer'
Downs Intrinsity after PA Semi comes back up
Yes, Apple has borged Intrinsity, the Texas-based chip outfit that (supposedly) played a role in the design of the chip driving the iPad.
Today, the Jobsian cult confirmed the buy with the New York Times. Previously, profiles posted to the social networking site known as LinkedIn indicated that Apple had borged at least a trio of Intrinsity engineers.
After "people familiar with the deal" told The Times that Apple had actually bought the chip designer, a company spokesperson confirmed the acquisition. Then, of course, the spokesman declined to say what Apple planned to do with its new purchase. “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we do not comment on our purpose or plans,” said an Apple spokesman.
On April 1, EDN reported that Intrinsity had been sold while speculating that Apple was the buyer. Then Macrumors dug up LinkedIn profiles indicating that at least three Intrinsity engineers had been eaten by the cult. Since the EDN report, Intrinsity's website has been "under construction".
EDN is among the many who have speculated that the iPad's A4 chip was designed by Intrinsity and manufactured by Samsung, Others had guessed the chip was built by engineers who moved to Apple after it acquired boutique chip designer PA Semi. But this particular speculation was blunted when the world realized that several PA Semi employees had left Apple in the wake of the acquisition.
At some point, multiple PA Semi employees - including engineers - departed the Jobsian cult to form a new company dubbed Agnilux, which has since been acquired by Google. The word from The New York Times is that Agnilux was acquired to help Mountain View port its Chrome and Android OSes to tablets and TV set-top boxes, but it's worth noting that Agnilux was reportedly working on "some kind of server" before it was borged.
Last year, Samsung told the world it had teamed with Instrinsity on a 1GHz ARM chip known as the Hummingbird, and Samsung manufactures the ARM chips underpinning the Apple iPhone, a smaller version of the iPad. This has led many to assume that the Hummingbird architecture is the basis for the the A4.
Intrinsity's roots run back to Exponential Technology, an outfit that worked to build ultra-fast PowerPC chips for the Mac in the 1990s before a falling out with Apple. The Cupertino company declined to actually use the chips and Exponential ended up suing the Mac maker. ®
Resistance is Futile
Once again Star Trek-isms have infiltrated the lexicon. I guess this makes Steve the hive queen.
What bothers me is the attitude that Apple is doing something not quite cricket. There was a time when the entire non-Apple milieu denigrated Apple for its in-house only mentality. The Steve/hive queen returns, opens things up, and that is also a basis for bitching?
And another thing, the iPhone is a smaller version of the iPad? It sounds like the author has been asleep for the last three years. Besides the iPod Touch is what gave birth to the iPad after the iPhone gave birth to the Touch.
With the corrections out of the way, the meat of the article is interesting in that it is just another example of the global economy: California company buys Texas half of Austin-Korean SoC team. This is now the norm.
I wonder how much Acorn got into Apple
Maybe none at all but I do recall being shown a WORKING Acorn Pad sometime around 1997/8 - but I cannot be certain of date. It was DEFINITELY pre 1999. Like Apple, Acorn had a tight well written OS integrated very closely with the hardware. There was no need for a graphics card and having the core of the OS in ROM provided a good level of protection from viruses.
Often when I read of what Apple or ARM are doing my mind is taken back to items I was shown at Acorn - sometimes officially & sometimes unofficially. There was a huge pool of talent within Acorn and its ISVs, IHVs etc. many able to write major applications completely in machine code. Compared to application size today they were tiny.
Sometimes it is a pity that we can't live in the past because SOME things were better
Resistance is... wait, what?
Steve opens things up? Are we living on the same planet here?
This is now making more sense.
This could be where the Apple + Arm rumours are stemming from. Apple are in effect getting an Arm based company, (but thankfully not Arm itself) as Apple are going after the 1GHz Arm Hummingbird chip. I'm sure getting closely involved with Hummingbird development will be very useful to Apple's long term plans. At that speed its very useful for a lot of tasks.
Am I the only one that had to look up the definition of "borged"?
I thought it was something to do with Swedish chefs...