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(Ars Technica)   AMD: Humping Intel's leg since 1969   (arstechnica.com) divider line 107
    More: Interesting, AMD, Humping Intel, Intel, clock speed, capital structure, ATI, net sales, Raza  
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7032 clicks; posted to Geek » on 22 Apr 2013 at 2:57 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-22 02:05:45 PM  
Sweet! My first green!
 
2013-04-22 02:06:03 PM  
I fondly remember my days of programming a bit slice machine made with AMD parts.  Play with 3 things on every clock cycle (program counter, Accumulator, stack pointer), an average of 2 lines of code a day, debugging with a logic analyzer.

Also fondly remember my 64 bit Athlon clocked faster than any Intel chip around at the time, prolly 2003'ish.

Too bad the founder (Jerry Sanders?) was such a douchebag.
 
2013-04-22 02:06:46 PM  
I retain a lot of fondness for AMD, and I still use AMD CPUs in my system builds instead of Intels.
 
ZAZ [TotalFark]
2013-04-22 02:11:28 PM  
I think antitrust folks should shove red hot pokers into Intel executives until the company breaks into smaller pieces. I buy non-Intel when I can.
 
2013-04-22 02:17:13 PM  
The K7 also scored important symbolic wins-AMD was able to beat Intel to market with a 1GHz processor, for example.

I was on the K6 and K7 development team, so I expect to be getting a kick from these replies.

However, just weeks after the K7 debuted on June 23, 1999, Raza left AMD amid rumors that he had a major falling-out with Sanders. Analysts were left scratching their heads.

"It's certainly going to reduce confidence in the company's ability to compete," Linley Gwennap, chief analyst at Cahners MicroDesign Resources, told the Los Angeles Times in 1999. "Atiq was the one guy in upper management that really understood the technology behind the K6 and K7."


At the same time they also drove off or fired all of their "cowboy" engineers and put all development projects under the control of outside-of-the-division bean counters.

The subsequent flop was not a surprise to some of us.

(yeah, I'm still bitter).
 
2013-04-22 03:00:04 PM  
AMD: Keeping Intel on its toes since 1969.
 
2013-04-22 03:00:58 PM  
My impression has always been that Intel has been ahead of AMD on raw speed within the desktop and workstation domains, but that AMD has thrived on making good chips for servers and lower power embedded devices.

AMD seems to have gone the route of more cores and faster, RISCier cores, but Intel seems to get more out of each cycle and better wall-clock time. I think one big factor moving forward is whose cores actually work better in parallel operation. Things like hyperthreading, cache coherence, and processor interconnects change significantly once you start moving from four physical cores to eight, sixteen, and more cores.
 
2013-04-22 03:21:48 PM  

Fubini: My impression has always been that Intel has been ahead of AMD on raw speed within the desktop and workstation domains, but that AMD has thrived on making good chips for servers and lower power embedded devices.


Intel's cores are faster, but AMD is stuffing more of them per socket... so it all depends on what you want.  We're talking a VM world for the most part, so do you need a smaller number of VMs to run faster (Intel) or more VMs that run and raw speed isn't as important (AMD).

We have blades with both quad 16core AMDs and quad 10core Intels... both work great for the role they are put into.
 
2013-04-22 03:27:54 PM  

RexTalionis: I retain a lot of fondness for AMD, and I still use AMD CPUs in my system builds instead of Intels.


i've always been on the AMD camp, that said i'm going over to intel for work needs on my next build as amd just isn't cutting it anymore for me in those areas, but if you're just building a gaming pc then amd is still fine (doubly so since it's always cheaper)
 
2013-04-22 03:29:54 PM  

Fubini: My impression has always been that Intel has been ahead of AMD on raw speed within the desktop and workstation domains, but that AMD has thrived on making good chips for servers and lower power embedded devices.

AMD seems to have gone the route of more cores and faster, RISCier cores, but Intel seems to get more out of each cycle and better wall-clock time. I think one big factor moving forward is whose cores actually work better in parallel operation. Things like hyperthreading, cache coherence, and processor interconnects change significantly once you start moving from four physical cores to eight, sixteen, and more cores.


AMD pulled ahead with the athlon 64 for a time, but never seemed to catch intel when intel introduced the Core series chips.

I did find it interesting that they are having a lot of success with consoles this time around, powering all three of the major players for ether CPU, GPU, or APU.
 
2013-04-22 03:39:40 PM  

Caelistis: Sweet! My first green!


link to the 1st page next time!
 
2013-04-22 03:43:23 PM  
Intel flat-out could not compete in the server space until they dropped the FSB. Netburst simply heated the room while not feeding data to the cpus. Bus saturation made Netburst and Core useless, absolutely useless before Quickpath. A client had some dual-quad Core2s that would run one thread 20% faster than their AMD boxes, but would run 8 threads at 45% throughput compared to the AMD. Thing is, without AMD as a competitor, I think Intel would have been happy to shovel Netburst to the customer until the end of time.

Intel sure gets a lot of FPS on Cow-a-Doody though, don't it?
 
2013-04-22 03:44:55 PM  

Caelistis: Sweet! My first green!


Way to link to page 3 numbnuts.
 
2013-04-22 03:45:28 PM  

dj_spanmaster: AMD: Keeping Intel on its toes since 1969.


Yep.  AMD's existence put the pressure on Intel to keep producing quality hardware.  Microsoft didn't have a competitor like that which is why their software is generally crappy.
 
2013-04-22 03:47:09 PM  

RexTalionis: I retain a lot of fondness for AMD, and I still use AMD CPUs in my system builds instead of Intels.


Same here.  The old Athlons doubled as space heaters.
 
2013-04-22 03:48:00 PM  

Antimatter: Fubini: My impression has always been that Intel has been ahead of AMD on raw speed within the desktop and workstation domains, but that AMD has thrived on making good chips for servers and lower power embedded devices.

AMD seems to have gone the route of more cores and faster, RISCier cores, but Intel seems to get more out of each cycle and better wall-clock time. I think one big factor moving forward is whose cores actually work better in parallel operation. Things like hyperthreading, cache coherence, and processor interconnects change significantly once you start moving from four physical cores to eight, sixteen, and more cores.

AMD pulled ahead with the athlon 64 for a time, but never seemed to catch intel when intel introduced the Core series chips.

I did find it interesting that they are having a lot of success with consoles this time around, powering all three of the major players for ether CPU, GPU, or APU.


I find it very amusing that it's AMD in 2012 that had the first x86 production CPU over 4ghz, and not Intel in the NetBurst days.

I've always been fond of AMD.  Let's hope they can turn it around before it's too late.

/whar is my 10ghz Pentium 4
//whar
 
2013-04-22 03:51:45 PM  
I have an Athlon and at the time, I felt that AMD had the edge on Intel. Everyone I knew was using them. I think the rise of laptops has maybe hurt them.

Are AMDs still worth getting? Need to build a new desktop. Upsides? Downsides?
 
2013-04-22 03:52:12 PM  

Antimatter: I did find it interesting that they are having a lot of success with consoles this time around, powering all three of the major players for ether CPU, GPU, or APU.


In the past, they've been very willing to cut prices and margins  on their products to secure deals. Expecially for things like consoles and servers where they can get paid upfront rather than by unit sold.

It's unfortunate that they're still bleeding money
 
2013-04-22 03:52:22 PM  
I still use AMD in my desktop, mostly because I was able to spend about half of what I would have with and Intel chip. Laptops are still Intel all the way though. AMD has always been just terrible in that space for me.
 
2013-04-22 04:02:32 PM  
I think AMD is poised for a real coup by pushing OpenCL and the heterogeneous architecture.  i7 is really fast for signal processing but the AMD/ATI 7970 crushes it.  More and more heavy lifting is going to get pushed to the video card, and AMD/ATI have a massive head start there.
 
2013-04-22 04:10:05 PM  

Brontes: I think AMD is poised for a real coup by pushing OpenCL and the heterogeneous architecture.  i7 is really fast for signal processing but the AMD/ATI 7970 crushes it.  More and more heavy lifting is going to get pushed to the video card, and AMD/ATI have a massive head start there.


The acquisition of ATI, and its subsequent integration into AMD-powered systems was a GREAT move.

Now, a AMD-powered laptop with ATI chipset and ATI video offers true integration, with the chipset designed at the same time as the processor so you don't wind up with unexpected bottlenecks, and spending the right extra 2 cents per build can really net you huge gains.

I would like to see them move more into the tablet arena, with 3D acceleration there currently almost nonexistent. They have experience with low-power mobile architecture already, let's utilize it the way the market is moving.
 
2013-04-22 04:11:56 PM  

Caelistis: Sweet! My first green!


Congrats. As others have said already, please link to page 1 next time. And don't forget to submit a "Followup" when part two of the article comes out. I for one would be interested in reading it.
 
2013-04-22 04:12:13 PM  

RexTalionis: I retain a lot of fondness for AMD, and I still use AMD CPUs in my system builds instead of Intels.


This. I came to the party late, but AMD won my heart with the 386-40 and I never looked back.
 
2013-04-22 04:13:45 PM  
But how can they compete and innovate without going into space?
 
2013-04-22 04:15:04 PM  
and if I'm after the equivalent of say, an i5, what is that for intel? Trinity A6? FX-6?
 
2013-04-22 04:18:22 PM  

farkeruk: and if I'm after the equivalent of say, an i5, what is that for intel? Trinity A6? FX-6?


The intel vesrion of an i5?.... an i5
 
2013-04-22 04:19:59 PM  
I could never afford Intel chips for my builds.

This past Summer I decided to change that and went with a laptop with an i3.

All in all the experience isn't really anything different which I can notice.  But it's nice to have had it.
 
2013-04-22 04:24:10 PM  
i miss my Cyrix 486DLC
 
2013-04-22 04:26:23 PM  

Caelistis: Sweet! My first green!


Hey man you paid your 5 bucks!
 
2013-04-22 04:27:47 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: But how can they compete and innovate without going into space?


Why do you think they're not already there?

(From 2001): Boeing on Wednesday bought a 96-processor supercomputer based on the Linux operating system and Advanced Micro Devices processors for use in designing the new Delta IV rocket that launches satellites into space.

The system was built by Linux Networx, a Sandy, Utah-based company that specializes in "Beowulf" clusters--gangs of networked Linux machines that collectively tackle computational problems.


AMD also powers quite a few satellites.

laptoping.com
 
2013-04-22 04:30:26 PM  
I just built my new computer with an FX-8 proc (newegg has a bundle for $550). Completely smokes my last build with an Athlon single core proc.
 
2013-04-22 04:34:53 PM  

ZAZ: I think antitrust folks should shove red hot pokers into Intel executives until the company breaks into smaller pieces. I buy non-Intel when I can.


Unless they successfully hop on the "low energy," low cost server bandwagon, they're poised to lose a bunch of the server market share.  They seem to be making an attempt to morph their Atom line into that arena, as evidenced by HP's first Moonshot hardware.  However, HP's next hardware for Moonshot is going to be ARM based and is expected to be even less power-hungry while being more CPU dense.

Yes, there will still be a market for workstations and high-end gaming computers, but heck, for every-day desktop computing (email, browsing, office productivity), one of these $89 palm sized, ARM based computers is just dandy.
 
2013-04-22 04:38:09 PM  

ox45tallboy: Quantum Apostrophe: But how can they compete and innovate without going into space?

Why do you think they're not already there?

(From 2001): Boeing on Wednesday bought a 96-processor supercomputer based on the Linux operating system and Advanced Micro Devices processors for use in designing the new Delta IV rocket that launches satellites into space.

The system was built by Linux Networx, a Sandy, Utah-based company that specializes in "Beowulf" clusters--gangs of networked Linux machines that collectively tackle computational problems.

AMD also powers quite a few satellites.

[laptoping.com image 299x253]


Yeah yeah, it's a tiny fraction of a subset of a part of their market. If it disappeared overnight, would the pace of innovation slow down? What is driving the technology here? That we desperately need to go into space ... or download porn?
 
2013-04-22 04:53:07 PM  

YodaBlues: Way to link to page 3 numbnuts.


The best part is that it's difficult to tell that you're on page 3 of the article until you get to the end and see the page indicator.
 
2013-04-22 04:56:40 PM  
I see the flagship AMD 4Ghz 8 core chips getting beaten on every test by an Intel 4 core 3.4Ghz, they are the same price (That 8350 vs the 2500, $200 price point).  That's as beastly as AMD can go and it gets outmaneuvered and at a far cooler running temperature by Intel's 2nd best line.  Cores and especially Mhz got diluted as a reasonable comparison between the two's product lines a long time ago and AMD is just making things worse.  Bulldozer is a dozer, I really hope they can pull up their socks because otherwise Intel is just going to continue coasting.  In the server world its just more of the same, AMD's slightly lower price point comes at a tremendous penalty in performance, and let's face it when you are in the market for multi-CPU beasties the price point is one of the further things from your mind.
 
2013-04-22 05:08:33 PM  
I always liked AMD for computers that needed a processor, for lack a better of term.  Basically I didn't give a shiat about performance, I just needed a processor so the damn thing would turn on.  The Athlon line treated me well back when I'd buy a cheap mobo, a TV capture card and stuff an older tower full of hard drives and christen it my home media server.  As long as it could record TV and move ones and zeros from the SATA hard drives to the NIC, it was fine.

As time goes on though the need to home brew up that kind of PC lessens.  These days I have a PS3 that runs Linux and has external hard drives attached to it, it will be a long time before I need to upgrade that beyond perhaps attaching larger hard drives.
 
2013-04-22 05:09:53 PM  
I've been an AMD fan since the late 90s when I had a 400mhz-ish chip, they do seem to go through cycles where they're good then bad.  I still recommend AMD chips for some systems I sell but it's a tossup whether AMD or Intel is better for all situations, I'm still rocking an almost 5 year old quad core Socket 775 chip though so my opinion may be wrong.
 
2013-04-22 05:10:54 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: ox45tallboy: Quantum Apostrophe: But how can they compete and innovate without going into space?

Why do you think they're not already there?

(From 2001): Boeing on Wednesday bought a 96-processor supercomputer based on the Linux operating system and Advanced Micro Devices processors for use in designing the new Delta IV rocket that launches satellites into space.

The system was built by Linux Networx, a Sandy, Utah-based company that specializes in "Beowulf" clusters--gangs of networked Linux machines that collectively tackle computational problems.

AMD also powers quite a few satellites.

[laptoping.com image 299x253]

Yeah yeah, it's a tiny fraction of a subset of a part of their market. If it disappeared overnight, would the pace of innovation slow down? What is driving the technology here? That we desperately need to go into space ... or download porn?


Most of my work these days is in medical tomographic imaging.  The amount of data we generate is massive and often under processed.  There is the phase, polarization, frequency, etc of light that all contain information that needs to be processed.  Frankly, the medical industry needs heterogenius systems to help lower the cost of development.  Ultrasound tomographic systems use a lot of custom FPGA stuff which is expensive and time consuming to develop but where the only way back in the day.  Why go that route when you can get a low power CPU for the OS/Software and throw the data at the GPU when needed?  All moving towards embedded as ox45tallboy mentioned.

Then you can roll with a off-the-shelf high speed daq, off the shelf CPU/GPU in a nice small mobo package and development gets a hell of a lot cheaper.  No licensing FPGA IP, no long compile times, etc.  Yeah, there are downsides to this approach, but they are easy to address.

AMD could have some nice glory years coming up if they keep pushing OpenCL to the right folks.
 
2013-04-22 05:18:31 PM  

Antimatter: I did find it interesting that they are having a lot of success with consoles this time around, powering all three of the major players for ether CPU, GPU, or APU.


So I built a budget HTPC with an AMD A4.-5300 APU, no graphics card.  Turns out I use the machine as more of a general purpose device than I expected.

On a whim I ran "can you run it" for Bioshock Infinite and passed the minimum requirements.

I am sorely tempted to see if I can actually run the latest greatest game on an $60 cpu with no graphics card...
 
2013-04-22 05:24:11 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: Yeah yeah, it's a tiny fraction of a subset of a part of their market. If it disappeared overnight, would the pace of innovation slow down? What is driving the technology here? That we desperately need to go into space ... or download porn?


I personally know plenty of people that aren't interested in space travel at all, that thought the whole Mars rover thing was a waste of taxpayer money.

But I don't know anyone personally that is outspoken about the elimination of porn.

However, one recent presidential candidate (Rick Santorum) ran on the elimination of porn, but unless NASA was the third government agency Rick Perry wanted to eliminate, no major presidential candidate as of yet has advocated outlawing space exploration altogether. Although RON PAUL didn't like the idea of government paying for it, he didn't have a problem with private businesses exploring the solar system.

But it's a good question. I think the technology drives itself; as new technologies such as e-mail have come into existence, business has changed in order to take advantage of it. As new devices and methods are invented, some will increase productivity and be successful, spawning more efficient means of doing things we weren't even doing five years previously.

By that same token, if space exploration becomes cheaper, we might see asteroid mining, or retirement homes in the lower gravity of Mars or the moon come into existence as a normal part of our lives before long.

It's a chicken/egg thing.
 
2013-04-22 05:24:19 PM  
Well that was an enjoyable third page of that article.
 
2013-04-22 05:30:58 PM  

OSULugan: YodaBlues: Way to link to page 3 numbnuts.

The best part is that it's difficult to tell that you're on page 3 of the article until you get to the end and see the page indicator.


Or you look at the URL. Either way, that's a pretty big design fail on the part of Ars.
 
2013-04-22 05:33:57 PM  

Brontes: Most of my work these days is in medical tomographic imaging. The amount of data we generate is massive and often under processed. There is the phase, polarization, frequency, etc of light that all contain information that needs to be processed. Frankly, the medical industry needs heterogenius systems to help lower the cost of development. Ultrasound tomographic systems use a lot of custom FPGA stuff which is expensive and time consuming to develop but where the only way back in the day. Why go that route when you can get a low power CPU for the OS/Software and throw the data at the GPU when needed? All moving towards embedded as ox45tallboy mentioned.

Then you can roll with a off-the-shelf high speed daq, off the shelf CPU/GPU in a nice small mobo package and development gets a hell of a lot cheaper. No licensing FPGA IP, no long compile times, etc. Yeah, there are downsides to this approach, but they are easy to address.

AMD could have some nice glory years coming up if they keep pushing OpenCL to the right folks.


To add to the response I just made to Quantum Apostrophe above, could you have even envisioned having this thought a few decades ago? Computerized tomography has only been around about 40 years or so, and not in common use until the 1980's. Once the technology was created, others worked to optimize it, making it smaller, faster, and above all, cheaper. Now doctors rely on it so much that I would guess the vast majority of posters in this thread have at some point received a CT or MRI scan. Many newer doctors today would not know where to begin in healing a person without the benefit of the information received by modern tomography, just as many of today's journalists would be unable to operate an IBM Selectric or send internal memos through a vacuum canister system.

I say the technology creates the demand just as much the demand creates the technology.
 
2013-04-22 05:38:13 PM  

MrEricSir: OSULugan: YodaBlues: Way to link to page 3 numbnuts.

The best part is that it's difficult to tell that you're on page 3 of the article until you get to the end and see the page indicator.

Or you look at the URL. Either way, that's a pretty big design fail on the part of Ars.


Well, if they wanted to make sure that new visitors went to page 1, it would pretty much require that the server checked a tracking cookie for previous visits. However, this would necessitate additional coding, and prevent people from linking directly to the page of the article they were quoting from, which presents another annoyance.

Then again, they could have put the whole article on one page, but that would have reduced page clicks, and therefore ad revenue.

I think they did it right, and subby should be publicly shamed in order that he never repeat the unseemly behavior of linking to page 3.
 
2013-04-22 05:57:11 PM  

ox45tallboy: By that same token, if space exploration becomes cheaper, we might see asteroid mining, or retirement homes in the lower gravity of Mars or the moon come into existence as a normal part of our lives before long.


No, we won't. Before never. Retirees? On Mars? Are you sure about that? Why subject retirees to the stress of a rocket launch, the journey to Mars, to end up in an empty radiation-blasted hell with nothing in it, away from every single thing and person and medical care we have here? You know, the terrible god damn gravity well and all that... Maybe we could put them in rubber suits and have them float in water?

I've never heard a retiree complain about the god damn gravity well before. Aching joints, yes. These we will fix by understanding how our cells work before long.

What is this obsession with these sci-fi retro daydreams that don't make a shred of sense? And these justifications ... wow. Think it through a little bit. Asteroid mining? Um, hello? We are ON a really BIG asteroid. And this one has all the infrastructure and stuff you need.

/Oh I'm sorry, of course we'll have a Space Elevator and going to Mars will like taking the subway, only Marsier.
//My mistake
 
2013-04-22 06:20:17 PM  
History:

Intel chips outperformed AMD chips, AMD chips were cheap
AMD Athlon chips surpassed Intel chips in performance in spite of using a lower clock speed, AMD chips came up in price
Intel released the Core 2 processors and CRUSHED AMD in performance...just obliterated them, AMD chips went back to dirt cheap

AMD has yet to catch up.  I have a coworker who refuses to build his system(I build them for you if you don't want to build it yourself) with an Intel processor and he now has the slowest system of the company.  My(very fast) Intel laptop outperforms his AMD system.

I'm not a zealot either way.  I use whichever one performs best.  There was a time when AMD was all I built for that reason.  It's been a long time since AMD performed best.
 
2013-04-22 06:40:44 PM  

RatOmeter: ZAZ: I think antitrust folks should shove red hot pokers into Intel executives until the company breaks into smaller pieces. I buy non-Intel when I can.

Unless they successfully hop on the "low energy," low cost server bandwagon, they're poised to lose a bunch of the server market share.  They seem to be making an attempt to morph their Atom line into that arena, as evidenced by HP's first Moonshot hardware.  However, HP's next hardware for Moonshot is going to be ARM based and is expected to be even less power-hungry while being more CPU dense.

Yes, there will still be a market for workstations and high-end gaming computers, but heck, for every-day desktop computing (email, browsing, office productivity), one of these $89 palm sized, ARM based computers is just dandy.


is that a raspi that doesn't suck?
 
2013-04-22 06:54:34 PM  

OSULugan: YodaBlues: Way to link to page 3 numbnuts.

The best part is that it's difficult to tell that you're on page 3 of the article until you get to the end and see the page indicator.


That was how I found out, I read the whole thing saw the next time then the page number and face palmed...
 
2013-04-22 07:04:12 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: ox45tallboy: By that same token, if space exploration becomes cheaper, we might see asteroid mining, or retirement homes in the lower gravity of Mars or the moon come into existence as a normal part of our lives before long.

No, we won't. Before never. Retirees? On Mars? Are you sure about that? Why subject retirees to the stress of a rocket launch, the journey to Mars, to end up in an empty radiation-blasted hell with nothing in it, away from every single thing and person and medical care we have here?


So we don't have to deal with them?

/Forum trolls will be depart on the second vessel.
 
2013-04-22 07:09:38 PM  

Quantum Apostrophe: ox45tallboy: By that same token, if space exploration becomes cheaper, we might see asteroid mining, or retirement homes in the lower gravity of Mars or the moon come into existence as a normal part of our lives before long.

No, we won't. Before never. Retirees? On Mars? Are you sure about that? Why subject retirees to the stress of a rocket launch, the journey to Mars, to end up in an empty radiation-blasted hell with nothing in it, away from every single thing and person and medical care we have here? You know, the terrible god damn gravity well and all that... Maybe we could put them in rubber suits and have them float in water?

I've never heard a retiree complain about the god damn gravity well before. Aching joints, yes. These we will fix by understanding how our cells work before long.

What is this obsession with these sci-fi retro daydreams that don't make a shred of sense? And these justifications ... wow. Think it through a little bit. Asteroid mining? Um, hello? We are ON a really BIG asteroid. And this one has all the infrastructure and stuff you need.

/Oh I'm sorry, of course we'll have a Space Elevator and going to Mars will like taking the subway, only Marsier.
//My mistake


Erm, Astroid mining is actually an active goal right now by many materials corporations. One of the primary goals of SpaceX and the like is to make launching into space cheap enough that it'll be a net gain. There are many many precious minerals that we're running out of here on Earth that can be mined from asteroids in the solar system and they're worth a lot of $$.

The other stuff, especially colonizing the moon and Mars, is kinda far fetched unless teraforming tech really advances. And there'd be little point...for now.

Point is, you seem to be quick to poo-poo all ideas of space travel -- where some actually have some fairly near-term and immediate utility.
 
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