Intel to Promote the Wireless World

Developer Forum will showcase the chip giant's commitment to wireless technologies, as well as new enterprise offerings.

Intel Chief Technology Officer Pat Gelsinger hopes that enterprise IT folks leave next months Intel Developer Forum dreaming about how to set up and manage a completely wireless world ... and using Intel products to do it.

The chip giant will use the big semiannual confab, which will be held Sept. 16-18 in San Jose, Calif., and is expected to draw 4,000 attendees, to roll out products and elicit discussion around all of its major product areas—processors, chipsets, networking silicon, software and, of course, mobile technologies.

Gelsinger said in an interview Friday that he is most excited by the discussions around Intels wireless technologies.

"Everything the end user sees is being made mobile and wireless," said Gelsinger, who works out of Intels Oregon offices. "This is the beginning, not the end [of the renaissance of mobile computing]. There are new devices, new usage models."

At the event, Intel executives will discuss a new mobile chipset and a mobile PC platform, give a road map for Intels implementations of a range of 802.11 technologies, and demonstrate processors that use the Santa Clara, Calif., companys power-saving XScale technology.

Gelsinger himself will expand on the Radio Free Intel initiative he has championed. He will demonstrate in a keynote address prototypes that optimize the throughput and range of smart antennas and show how users can seamlessly roam from antenna to antenna. He is also expected to expand on Intels development road map for Centrino, the mobile and wireless-enabled chip. Part of the road map will include a look at Centrino upgrades into 2008 and how Intel will move radio technologies onto CMOS chips.

Another executive, Eric Mentzer, will promote Intels efforts to modularize communications technologies onto 90-nanometer chips, which themselves provide interconnections for wireless and wired networks. Mentzer, vice president and CTO of the Intel Communications Group, will demonstrate broadband wireless networking using 802.11 and 802.16 technologies.

But the entire three-day event will not be devoted strictly to wireless initiatives. Paul Otellini, Intels president and chief operating officer, in addition to talking about the "digital home," is expected to unveil an upcoming enterprise processor that is new on Intels road map. Mike Fister, senior vice president and general manager for Intels Enterprise Platforms Group, is expected to also add more color on the companys future plans for its 32-bit Xeon and 64-bit Itanium processors.

Along with Vice President Sandra Morris, Fister will lay out Intels work to offer a BIOS updated for modular 32- and 64-bit computing. The Tiano project will provide BIOS based on Intels EFI (extensible firmware interface) specification. EFI provides a model for connecting the firmware used in newer processors with operating systems.

Tiano rewrites the spaghetti-code of previous BIOSes that were based on 8- and 16-bit processing and presents it in a modular format, Gelsinger said. It will enable such things and multiprocessing, plug-and-play RAID and secure booting, he said.