I was reading the big Business Week story on Intel, and it quoted CEO Paul Otellini: “He lays particular emphasis on marketing expertise because he thinks the only way Intel can succeed in new markets is by communicating more clearly what the technology can do for customers. ‘To sell technology now, you have to do it in a way where it’s much more simple,’ says Otellini. ‘You can’t talk about the bits and the bytes.’” This seems deeply wrong to me on a whole bunch of levels. People already know what computers and game consoles and telephones and all the other things with CPUs in them can do for them, and if they don’t, it’s not Intel’s job to explain, that belongs to the people who build the boxes that the consumers slap down their plastic for. Once the buyers understand, they care mostly about price, except for bleeding-edge gamers and other CPU hogs, who perforce do care about bits and bytes. Intel’s real customers are Apple and Intel and Dell and HP and IBM, and I guarantee those guys care about bits and bytes (and wattage), and even more about dollars per unit. So it looks to me like Intel’s charging off in the wrong direction with Viiv and Core and so on. Having said that, I suspect the Intel engineering tribe is maniacally focused on catching and beating AMD, and I wouldn’t want to bet against them in the long term; so they’ll probably do OK.