Intel CEO, Paul Otellini returned to IDF to deliver the opening keynote this year. His absence from the event last year meant that former CEO, Craig Barrett had to deliver the keynote, and a very thought provoking presentation it was. This year though, Otellini chose to talk about Intel and its technology, rather than providing the kind of social commentary that Barrett had presented us with. But that's not necessarily a bad thing.
The buzz word in Otellini's speech was "Continuum". If you're hoping that I can explain exactly what Continuum means, I'm afraid you're out of luck, because if there was an explanation given, it was a little too vague for me to grasp. I can however tell you what it isn't - it isn't convergence. Convergence is, quite simply, yesterday's news, according to Otellini. Now it's all about Continuum. Despite the fact that I'm not 100 per cent sure what Continuum refers to, it certainly has some interesting stuff wrapped up in it.
Standards are the key to technological progress, according to Otellini. Defining, creating and evolving standards is paramount to both Intel and the technology industry as a whole.
Also vital to Intel's plans is the continued adherence to Moore's Law, with 32nm parts arriving this year and 22nm chips already on the roadmap for 2011. In fact Otellini showed off a 22nm wafer for the first time, stressing that it was working silicon!
Following Intel's de facto "Tick Tock" processor generation model, the switch to 32nm will represent the Tick with Westmere, while the Tock will represent new micro-architecture on the same 32nm manufacturing process, in the shape of Sandybridge. And just to prove that everything is on schedule, there was a working Sandybridge based PC up on stage.