Tuesday, November 7th 2017

AMD Radeon Boss Raja Koduri Jumps Ship

As we reported back in September, Raja Koduri took a sabbatical leave from AMD's Radeon Technologies Group (RTG) to find himself. AMD CEO Lisa Su was left in charge during this time as Raja wasn't expected to return until December. However, our friends over at Hexus got their hands on a memo that Raja left to this team revealing his intentions to leave the company for good.
The memo is as follows:

'To my AMD family,

Forty is a significant number in history. It is a number representing transition, testing and change. I have just spent forty days away from the office going through such a transition. It was an important time with my family, and it also offered me a rare space for reflection. During this time I have come to the extremely difficult conclusion that it is time for me to leave RTG and AMD.

I have no question in my mind that RTG, and AMD, are marching firmly in the right direction as high-performance computing becomes ever-more-important in every aspect of our lives. I believe wholeheartedly in what we are doing with Vega, Navi and beyond, and I am incredibly proud of how far we have come and where we are going. The whole industry has stood up and taken notice of what we are doing. As I think about how computing will evolve, I feel more and more that I want to pursue my passion beyond hardware and explore driving broader solutions.

I want to thank Lisa and the AET for enabling me to pursue my passion during the last four years at AMD, and especially the last two years with RTG. Lisa has my utmost respect for exhibiting the courage to enable me with RTG, for believing in me and for going out of her way to support me. I would also like to call out Mark Papermaster who brought me into AMD, for his huge passion for technology and for his relentless support through many difficult phases. And of course, I want to thank each and every one of my direct staff and my indirect staff who have worked so hard with me to build what we have now got. I am very proud of the strong leaders we have and I'm fully confident that they can execute on the compelling roadmap ahead.

I will continue to be an ardent fan and user of AMD technologies for both personal and professional use.

As I mentioned, leaving AMD and RTG has been an extremely difficult decision for me. But I felt it is the right one for me personally at this point. Time will tell. I will be following with great interest the progress you will make over the next several years.

On a final note, I have asked a lot of you in the last two years. You've always delivered. You've made me successful both personally and professionally, for which I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. I have these final requests from you as I leave:
  • Stay focused on the roadmap!
  • Deliver on your commitments!
  • Continue the culture of Passion, Persistence and Play!
  • Make AMD proud!
  • Make me proud!
Yours,
Raja

Lisa Su will continue to lead RTG until a suitable replacement for Raja is found.Source: Hexus
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78 Comments on AMD Radeon Boss Raja Koduri Jumps Ship

#3
RejZoR
People can say whatever they want, but the way Radeon improved in last few years was pretty amazing. Especially on the software side which frankly sweeps the floor with outdated NVIDIA crap (I can't believe NV is still using this crap slow and ugly control panel they had on freaking Windows XP, 16 years ago). And Vega, if we ignore the fact it was quite a bit late, it is actually pretty decent and capable. And what lies ahead with Navi is what AMD was really waiting for. Vega was somewhat just a middle step. Lets see how it'll go.
Posted on Reply
#4
EarthDog
Now where was that other thread and who said he would be back? :p
Posted on Reply
#5
bug
RejZoR said:
People can say whatever they want, but the way Radeon improved in last few years was pretty amazing. Especially on the software side which frankly sweeps the floor with outdated NVIDIA crap (I can't believe NV is still using this crap slow and ugly control panel they had on freaking Windows XP, 16 years ago). And Vega, if we ignore the fact it was quite a bit late, it is actually pretty decent and capable. And what lies ahead with Navi is what AMD was really waiting for. Vega was somewhat just a middle step. Lets see how it'll go.
A few more Polaris/Vega iterations and AMD will rule the GPU world. /s
Posted on Reply
#6
sweet
Raja failed the expectation with Vega. I doubt that anyone could have done better than him, but still it was not a success. As he said, time will tell. Hopefully will the cash from Ryzen, AMD can lure a tech genius that can change the situation for Radeon.
Posted on Reply
#7
LightningJR
RejZoR said:
People can say whatever they want, but the way Radeon improved in last few years was pretty amazing. Especially on the software side which frankly sweeps the floor with outdated NVIDIA crap (I can't believe NV is still using this crap slow and ugly control panel they had on freaking Windows XP, 16 years ago). And Vega, if we ignore the fact it was quite a bit late, it is actually pretty decent and capable. And what lies ahead with Navi is what AMD was really waiting for. Vega was somewhat just a middle step. Lets see how it'll go.
Your eternal optimism for AMD never fails to impress. Vega a middle step? Only when a product fails to impress is when this statement comes up. Always looking ahead at the next product when the current one isn't up to snuff seems to never end for RTG recently...

Ryzen is great, AMD has a win, Radeon needs one bad, BAD.

I dislike NVidia for a lot of reasons but their products are just... well.. good and the drivers are as well. Until recently I never had any current experience with AMD Radeon drivers but holy shit my brother just got a RX560 and I pity him. So many problems, big and small, going straight from an Nvidia to an AMD GPU having it be so fresh in his mind, it's bad..

If Radeon has to follow in Nvidia's footsteps a little in order to keep up then I say go ahead, scrap what Raja was planning and start over, it worked for Ryzen time to do it for their GPUs


Oh and as far as I am concerned if software if functional and has a decent layout then it doesn't matter how it looks. ricer.. Fix the drivers first...
Posted on Reply
#8
ppn
He failed to put 4096 bit bus on VEGA. Would have killed 1080 Ti and Xp even.
Posted on Reply
#9
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
EarthDog said:
Now where was that other thread and who said he would be back? :p
Letter makes it pretty clear he was intending to come back but changed his mind. This is evidenced by the fact AMD has no replacement for him.

[LEFT]
ppn said:
He failed to put 4096 bit bus on VEGA. Would have killed 1080 Ti and Xp even.
At substantially higher cost. Vega wasn't intended to be the Fury X of this generation.
[/LEFT]
Posted on Reply
#10
dicktracy
He's just tired of being the scapegoat despite how little resources AMD had given to his team. Radeon would've been better in the hands of Intel or Samsung.

Also seems like he's joining Intel; basically what should've happened in the first place: Intel buying ATI and AMD joining forces with Nvidia. That would've been one hell of a battle.
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#11
etayorius
If he goes to intel, Radeon Buyout incoming.
Posted on Reply
#12
EarthDog
FordGT90Concept said:
Letter makes it pretty clear he was intending to come back but changed his mind. This is evidenced by the fact AMD has no replacement for him
Uhh huh... "sabbatical"

(Air quotes) :p

Lisa took over the reigns, cracked the whip and pointed the ship. Now, she brings someone in to lead dollowing the star she put in the sky. Raja heads off to Intel for AI. :p
Posted on Reply
#13
FordGT90Concept
"I go fast!1!11!1!"
Sabbaticals are a thing for people that haven't had a vacation in a long time. Sabbaticals are different from typical vacations because someone officially steps in to take their place until they return (necessary due to the length). Su was the obvious choice for that because RTG hasn't even been separate for very long...it was under the CEO's control anyway. Frankly, I think Navi is unaffected by this change.

My hope that whomever replaces Raja returns focus to DirectX and Vulkan.
Posted on Reply
#14
R0H1T
EarthDog said:
Now where was that other thread and who said he would be back? :p
Rats :pimp:

Posted on Reply
#15
StrayKAT
I still don't understand what he did so badly. I don't keep up with this, but why do even AMD fans dislike him? Seems like supply and mining craze is a big problem, but that can't be predicted (this guy wouldn't even need a job if his prediction powers were that awesome).
Posted on Reply
#16
RejZoR
LightningJR said:
Your eternal optimism for AMD never fails to impress. Vega a middle step? Only when a product fails to impress is when this statement comes up. Always looking ahead at the next product when the current one isn't up to snuff seems to never end for RTG recently...

Ryzen is great, AMD has a win, Radeon needs one bad, BAD.

I dislike NVidia for a lot of reasons but their products are just... well.. good and the drivers are as well. Until recently I never had any current experience with AMD Radeon drivers but holy shit my brother just got a RX560 and I pity him. So many problems, big and small, going straight from an Nvidia to an AMD GPU having it be so fresh in his mind, it's bad..

If Radeon has to follow in Nvidia's footsteps a little in order to keep up then I say go ahead, scrap what Raja was planning and start over, it worked for Ryzen time to do it for their GPUs


Oh and as far as I am concerned if software if functional and has a decent layout then it doesn't matter how it looks. ricer.. Fix the drivers first...
That's because you don't understand technology. It's not because Vega is bad, it's because we know what they've done with Ryzen (which is what makes it so good in a very large portion) and Navi will be employing similar tech. Making massive monolithic chips is difficult, expensive and has very low yields. What Navi will bring is making "big cheap" with high yields for lower price by "gluing" together smaller "cores". That's what Navi will be. Now, doing just this alone won't be enough as they need to also do something with GCN thing. It's great for compute, but it seems to really struggle with current games.

And saying NVIDIA has excellent drivers... if you'd only know what kind of bullshit problems I'm going through with NVIDIA for months now... And all connected to monumentally fucked up V-Sync logic. Horrible image tearing and corruption all over the place for videos in various V-Sync states. Something I never experienced on any Radeon for years. I mean, how can one fuck up V-Sync? Like, seriously? And yeah, NVIDIA Control Panel is garbage. It's buggy as hell, horrendously slow, loaded with dumb glitches all over the place and all this has existed for years. Just shows the QA levels at NVIDIA and how much their users give a F about quality and experience. I'd be furious to pay 800€ for a graphic card which is then controlled with such utter garbage UI. Which explains why I'm furious about it right here. When you have the fastest graphic card in the world and you still go and check RX Vega offerings (twice!), one might ask the question what's wrong with it... Yeah, it's ridiculously fast. When it works. When it doesn't (and that seems to be happening a lot), it's the biggest dumpster fire I've seen in last decade. At least their tech support does respond in a timely fashion and they aren't complete idiots like I'm used with most tech supports.
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#17
EarthDog
FordGT90Concept said:
Sabbaticals are a thing for people that haven't had a vacation in a long time. Sabbaticals are different from typical vacations because someone officially steps in to take their place until they return (necessary due to the length). Su was the obvious choice for that because RTG hasn't even been separate for very long...it was under the CEO's control anyway. Frankly, I think Navi is unaffected by this change.

My hope that whomever replaces Raja returns focus to DirectX and Vulkan.
Yeah, navi will be mostly unaffected, i agree. Its too far down the pipe for major directional changes.
Posted on Reply
#18
LightningJR
RejZoR said:
That's because you don't understand technology. It's not because Vega is bad, it's because we know what they've done with Ryzen (which is what makes it so good in a very large portion) and Navi will be employing similar tech. Making massive monolithic chips is difficult, expensive and has very low yields. What Navi will bring is making "big cheap" with high yields for lower price by "gluing" together smaller "cores". That's what Navi will be. Now, doing just this alone won't be enough as they need to also do something with GCN thing. It's great for compute, but it seems to really struggle with current games.

And saying NVIDIA has excellent drivers... if you'd only know what kind of bullshit problems I'm going through with NVIDIA for months now... And all connected to monumentally fucked up V-Sync logic. Horrible image tearing and corruption all over the place for videos in various V-Sync states. Something I never experienced on any Radeon for years. I mean, how can one fuck up V-Sync? Like, seriously? And yeah, NVIDIA Control Panel is garbage. It's buggy as hell, horrendously slow, loaded with dumb glitches all over the place and all this has existed for years. Just shows the QA levels at NVIDIA and how much their users give a F about quality and experience. I'd be furious to pay 800€ for a graphic card which is then controlled with such utter garbage UI. Which explains why I'm furious about it right here. When you have the fastest graphic card in the world and you still go and check RX Vega offerings (twice!), one might ask the question what's wrong with it... Yeah, it's ridiculously fast. When it works. When it doesn't (and that seems to be happening a lot), it's the biggest dumpster fire I've seen in last decade. At least their tech support does respond in a timely fashion and they aren't complete idiots like I'm used with most tech supports.
RejZoR said:
That's because you don't understand technology.
Thank you for the insult, I wont stoop to your level.
I am not here to argue with you but once again you are the eternal optimist when it comes to AMD and your speculations are useless (not a personal insult just that speculation is useless) like many of your other posts about Vega/Polaris before they came out. I am a realist so I don't expect anything but more of the same until the product comes out and the real specifics are reported.

As for your driver issues all I can do is take your word for it since I have not had those issues but I hope you get them resolved.

Try not to be so dramatic, state facts/specifics and move on. In your second paragraph it sounds like you have a vendetta against your GPU.
Posted on Reply
#19
bobbavet
Not surprised, Raja and his ilk cannot be told they are wrong and plow on.
I think Navi will be a dud. Will probably have new features and some ground breaking tech to it (like HBM), but at the end of the day have crap fps.
Raja will worm his way in to Intel working for the Intel/RTG cpu team.
Posted on Reply
#20
Prima.Vera
RejZoR said:
People can say whatever they want, but the way Radeon improved in last few years was pretty amazing.
Under his wing, Radeon became a shitty card no longer able to compete at any level with nVdia, that's why he was axed. Or forced to be axed. Let's see the things from perspective.
It will be hard, even impossible for AMD to recover on GPU front.
Posted on Reply
#21
Basard
RejZoR said:
People can say whatever they want, but the way Radeon improved in last few years was pretty amazing. Especially on the software side which frankly sweeps the floor with outdated NVIDIA crap (I can't believe NV is still using this crap slow and ugly control panel they had on freaking Windows XP, 16 years ago). And Vega, if we ignore the fact it was quite a bit late, it is actually pretty decent and capable. And what lies ahead with Navi is what AMD was really waiting for. Vega was somewhat just a middle step. Lets see how it'll go.
In my opinion, the thing amazing about Radeon in the last few years was HBM and the size reduction of the card that came with it. The only good Fury/Vega iteration was the Nano, and that was about 30% overpriced for the performance it offered.

Yeah, that Nvidia control panel sure is garbage though. Truly pathetic. And the Geforce Experience app is just aweful in so many ways....
Posted on Reply
#22
StrayKAT
I like Nvidia, but I can't argue with that. The drivers are fine, but everything else stinks.
Posted on Reply
#23
xkm1948
Praise Raja all you want. In the end the hard facts just detroyed whatever hype he was generating.

On the front of graphics they failed miserably. You think Crimson driver is good? Overwatch is broken for what, 6 months now? Go to reddit. Tons of issues with even basic AMD tech like FreeSync. I would take Nvidia 's "boring" but functional driver over this Crimson neon flashy poop any time.

On the front of computing they can't touch nvidia. Hardware wise they can not compete. Software wise they don't even provide proper OpenCL tech support.


Raja promised more than what he can deliver. If he just focused on graphics it might end up better.

Good riddance.
Posted on Reply
#24
cadaveca
My name is Dave
You guys... :kookoo:


Prima.Vera said:
Under his wing, Radeon became a shitty card no longer able to compete at any level with nVdia, that's why he was axed. Or forced to be axed. Let's see the things from perspective.
It will be hard, even impossible for AMD to recover on GPU front.
AMD had issues BEFORE Raja took the helm. The 7970 was the GPU at that time, and since then NV has had the lead in performance every single day. EVERY DAMN DAY. For the first two years, none of what was released really had any of Raja's fingerprints, IMHO. Yeah, they re-released the same GPU under different names (7970, 7970 GHz, 280, etc...).. what's he supposed to do, imagine a GPU and then make it appear, with no work done?

Frankly, I find it odd that anyone is trying to pin blame on him for AMD's current GPU products... because it is not directly his fault. He's just the figurehead. He simply isn't able to get what he wants out of his career at AMD now, so it's time to move on, and that might be due to restrictions placed on his ideas by AMD, and not anything he's actually done.

Would be great to interview him. I do ghave a feeling though that most of the questions I would have for him would be confined to NDAs. :p

xkm1948 said:
Praise Raja all you want. In the end the hard facts just detroyed whatever hype he was generating.

On the front of graphics they failed miserably. You think Crimson driver is good? Overwatch is broken for what, 6 months now? Go to reddit. Tons of issues with even basic AMD tech like FreeSync. I would take Nvidia 's "boring" but functional driver over this Crimson neon flashy poop any time.

On the front of computing they can't touch nvidia. Hardware wise they can not compete. Software wise they don't even provide proper OpenCL tech support.


Raja promised more than what he can deliver. If he just focused on graphics it might end up better.

Good riddance.
Yeah, because he writes all the drivers himself, and designs all the GPUs... the rest of the staff at RTG does absolutely nothing at all, and because of that high workload, he is leaving. Like what in the heck are you saying? I'm sorry, but... I can't help but say something here.

He'll leave, and nothing will change, and then you all will blame someone else. This whole thing and the way you guys respond to things like this... and everything when it comes to news and such in this industry.. is why I can't wait until my replacement is ready to take over. Can lead a horse to water, but can't make him drink, so fuck it.
Posted on Reply
#25
evernessince
LightningJR said:
Thank you for the insult, I wont stoop to your level.
I am not here to argue with you but once again you are the eternal optimist when it comes to AMD and your speculations are useless (not a personal insult just that speculation is useless) like many of your other posts about Vega/Polaris before they came out. I am a realist so I don't expect anything but more of the same until the product comes out and the real specifics are reported.

As for your driver issues all I can do is take your word for it since I have not had those issues but I hope you get them resolved.

Try not to be so dramatic, state facts/specifics and move on. In your second paragraph it sounds like you have a vendetta against your GPU.
You don't have to take his word for the driver issues, it's been pretty obvious that Nvidia's had a pretty rough year with it's drivers. They've made news multiple times on TechPowerUp and other tech websites for them in fact. Don't know why you are denying that so hard. Just give credit where credit is due, AMD has done well with it's drivers, Vega is medicore at best, and Pascal is excellent. The reason Nvidia is in the lead is because of Maxwell and Pascal, two awesome GPU series in a row. AMD on the otherhand had the 300 series, a refresh, the 400 series, which was pretty good but competed was still a gen behind pascal, and Vega, which launched with far too high voltage.
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