6/15/2005 - The X Initiative, a semiconductor design-chain consortium chartered with accelerating the availability and fabrication of the X Architecture, announced that ATI Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: ATYT) (TSX: ATY) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) (TAIEX: 2330, NYSE: TSM) are the recipients of the Initiative's 2005 Design-to-Manufacturing Catalyst Award. The award was presented in Anaheim, Calif., at the X Initiative's Fourth Anniversary Open Forum, held in conjunction with the Design Automation Conference (DAC).
The X Initiative steering group selected ATI and TSMC for their pioneering collaboration to produce the foundry industry's first X Architecture chip. ATI, Cadence Design Systems, Inc. (NYSE: CDN) (Nasdaq: CDN), TSMC, and the X Initiative announced earlier this week the successful fabrication of the high-performance, high-volume PCI-Express graphics chip using the X Architecture.
Presenting the award to ATI and TSMC, Jan Willis, senior vice president of Industry Alliances at Cadence and X Initiative steering group facilitator, noted, "ATI and TSMC's effort on this milestone chip is a prime example of how no one company can do it alone - design chain leaders must cooperate to enable significant advances in the semiconductor industry. In 2005, the year of first X products, ATI's industry-first fabless chip reiterates production readiness of the X Architecture as well as its compelling cost and performance benefits. The X Initiative is pleased to recognize the contributions of ATI and TSMC with this year's Design-to-Manufacturing Catalyst Award."
ATI's graphics chip was implemented using the Cadence X Architecture design solution and fabricated in TSMC's 0.11-micron process. This X Architecture implementation eliminated one metal layer from the original Manhattan design, reducing die costs.
"As a leader in the fabless semiconductor industry, ATI is an early adopter of new design technologies and we are delighted that our joint efforts with TSMC have set the stage for a broader adoption of the X Architecture," said Greg Buchner, vice president of Engineering at ATI. "We are honoured to receive this award for producing the fabless industry's first chip using the X Architecture."
"ATI's high-performance chip has been a valuable collaborative vehicle to establish production readiness of the X Architecture at TSMC," said Dr. Ping Yang, TSMC vice president, R&D. "The X Architecture is a viable design alternative."
About ATI Technologies
ATI Technologies Inc. is the world leader in the design and manufacture of innovative 3D graphics and digital media silicon solutions. An industry pioneer since 1985, ATI is the world's foremost graphics processing unit (GPU) provider and is dedicated to delivering leading-edge performance solutions for the full range of PC and Mac desktop and notebook platforms, workstation, set-top and digital television, game console and handheld device markets. With 2004 revenues of approximately US $2 billion, ATI has more than 2,700 employees in the Americas, Europe and Asia. ATI common shares trade on NASDAQ (ATYT) and the Toronto Stock Exchange (ATY).
TSMC is the world's largest dedicated semiconductor foundry, providing the industry's leading process technology and the foundry industry's largest portfolio of process-proven library, IP, design tools and reference flows. The company operates two advanced twelve-inch wafer fabs, five eight-inch fabs and one six-inch wafer fab. TSMC also has substantial capacity commitments at its wholly-owned subsidiary, WaferTech and TSMC (Shanghai), and its joint venture fab, SSMC. In early 2001, TSMC became the first IC manufacturer to announce a 90-nm technology alignment program with its customers. TSMC's corporate headquarters are in Hsinchu, Taiwan. For more information about TSMC please see http://www.tsmc.com
About the X Architecture
The X Architecture, the first production-worthy approach to the pervasive use of diagonal interconnect, reduces the total interconnect, or wiring, on a chip by up to 20 percent and via-counts by up to 30 percent, resulting in significant improvements in chip area, performance, power and cost. For the past 20 years, chip design has been primarily based on the de facto industry standard "Manhattan" architecture, named for its right-angle interconnects resembling a city-street grid. The X Architecture rotates the primary direction of the interconnect in the fourth and fifth metal layers by 45 degrees from a Manhattan architecture. The new architecture maintains compatibility with existing cell libraries, memory cells, compilers and IP cores by preserving the Manhattan geometry of metal layers one through three.
About the X Initiative
The X Initiative, a group of leading companies from throughout the semiconductor industry, is chartered with accelerating the availability and fabrication of the X Architecture, a revolutionary interconnect architecture based on the pervasive use of diagonal routing. The X Initiative's five-year mission is to provide an independent source of education about the X Architecture, to facilitate support and fabrication of the X Architecture through the semiconductor industry design chain, and to survey usage of the X Architecture to track its adoption. Representing leaders spanning the entire design-to-silicon supply chain, X Initiative members include: Applied Materials, Inc.; ARM; ASML Netherlands B.V.; ATI Technologies Inc., Cadence Design Systems, Inc.; Canon U.S.A. Inc.; Dai Nippon Printing (DNP); GDA Technologies, Inc.; HPL Technologies, Inc.; Hoya Corporation; IN2FAB Technology Ltd.; Infineon Technologies AG; JEOL, Ltd.; KLA-Tencor Corporation; Leica Microsystems AG; Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.; MicroArk Co. Ltd.; Nikon Corporation; NuFlare Technology Inc.; PDF Solutions, Inc.; Photronics, Inc.; Prolific Inc.; RUBICAD Corporation; Sagantec; Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd.; Silicon Logic Engineering, Inc.; SiliconMap, LLC.; Silicon Valley Research Inc.; STMicroelectronics; Sycon Design, Inc.; Tensilica, Inc.; Toppan Photomasks, Inc.; Toppan Printing Co.; Toshiba Corporation; TSMC; UMC; Virage Logic, Inc.; Virtual Silicon Technology, Inc.; Zenasis Technologies, Inc.; and Zygo Corporation. Membership is open to all companies throughout the semiconductor design chain. Materials can be found at www.xinitiative.com.
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