China is working hard at developing its own CPU, and it seems like the architecture will be based on MIPS, just like we reported here. The thing is that the Government has plans to also build a “national” GPU. But until then, they want to have a complete GPU compute infrastructure in place.
They want to have lots of laboratories where students and scientists learn how to best use the GPU
compute capabilities and then start working on the “national” GPU architecture.
To achieve this result, China was looking to buy around 10,000,000 GPUs and get the driver source code on the side as a bonus or as a combined deal.
The plan was to pay full amount for the GPUs and get the driver source code for free, considering the large order.
One other option was to negotiate better price for the GPUs, but to also pay for the source code, with a third option of negotiating the price separately for both required assets, but only going ahead if both deals are accepted.
It seems that Linus Torvalds was right last week when he sent Nvidia a “[Expletive] you” salute
, calling the company the “worst hardware company” he had to deal with when it came to open source software support.
Nvidia’s reluctance to reveal the source code of their drivers and the additional money the company seems to have asked led to an abrupt ending of the talks and to the initiation of talks with AMD
is reinforced by the fact that AMD
's current CEO is Lenovo's former CEO, and Lenovo is a huge Chinese company partially owned by the government.
The gross estimations of the deal revolve around the sum of half a billion dollars, considering the fact that there will be many subsequent requests for more engineering, licensing and support.