Transmeta claims five-year jump over Intel

Didn't that used to be two years?

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Once upon a time, it was impossible to get a word out of Transmeta, the chip start-up which established a Garbo-like mystique in pre-launch mode by the simple expedience of keeping its gob firmly closed. Today, it's difficult to get the chip designer to shut-up.

Dave Ditzel, CEO and one-man PR juggernaut, is now claiming that the company is a whole five years ahead of AMD and Intel.

Speaking to Reuters in Tokyo yesterday, he said his rivals would have to adopt a software approach to catch up design and that would mean starting from scratch. "From my 20 years of experience, it would take at least five years to get a new microprocessor out the door," he said.

Very interesting - but didn't Ditzel claim just a two-year lead over AMD and Intel in January at the US launch of company's flagship Crusoe chip? That's what our reporter on the ground recalls him saying. Perhaps it's all part of the pre-IPO hype. More likely, we remembered wrong. ®

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