from the tuck-my-worries-underneath-my-ARM dept.
UK sanctions Russian microprocessor makers, banning them from ARM:
The UK government added 63 Russian entities to its sanction list on Wednesday [04 May]. Among them are Baikal Electronics and MCST (Moscow Center of SPARC Technologies), the two most important chip makers in Russia.
The two sanctioned entities will now be denied access to the ARM architecture since Arm Ltd., the licensee, is based in Cambridge, England, and will have to comply with the sanctions.
[...] The two firms are considered vital for Russia's technological independence efforts, as they are expected to step up and cover the shortages created by the lack of processors made by Western chip-makers such as Intel and AMD.
[...] While these processors [the most advanced processors Baikai and MCST currently supply], and the much worse mid-tier and low-tier chips that carry the Baikal and MCST sticker, don't feature impressive performance, they could keep some vital parts of the Russian IT section going during shortages.
Although Russia has eased licensing regulations on other sanctioned items, such as software, that will most likely not happen here.
[...] However, it is important to remember that Baikal and MCST processors are made in foreign foundries, like Samsung's and TSMC's, and those two wouldn't infringe Arm's licensing rules and international law to facilitate Russian interests.
Baikal, which holds a valid license to produce at 16nm, only has a design license for its upcoming models, not manufacturing, so the only solution is to take the production domestically and ignore the rules.
[...] The Russian government has already approved an investment of 3.19 trillion rubles (38.2 billion USD) to counteract this in April 2022, but boosting local production will take many years. In the most optimistic scenarios, Russian foundries will be able to produce 28nm chips by 2030.
Russia mulls legalizing software piracy as it's cut off from Western tech:
With sanctions against Russia starting to bite, the Kremlin is mulling ways to keep businesses and the government running. The latest is a creative twist on state asset seizures, only instead of the government taking over an oil refinery, for example, Russia is considering legalizing software piracy.
Russian law already allows for the government to authorize—"without consent of the patent holder"—the use of any intellectual property "in case of emergency related to ensuring the defense and security of the state." The government hasn't taken that step yet, but it may soon, according to a report from Russian business newspaper Kommersant, spotted and translated by Kyle Mitchell, an attorney who specializes in technology law. It's yet another sign of a Cyber Curtain that's increasingly separating Russia from the West.
The plan would create "a compulsory licensing mechanism for software, databases, and technology for integrated microcircuits," the Kommersant said. It would only apply to companies from countries that have imposed sanctions. While the article doesn't name names, many large Western firms—some of which would be likely targets—have drastically scaled back business in Russia. So far, Microsoft has suspended sales of new products and services in Russia, Apple has stopped selling devices, and Samsung has stopped selling both devices and chips.
Presumably, any move by the Kremlin to "seize" IP would exempt Chinese companies, which are reportedly considering how to press their advantage. Smartphone-makers Xiaomi and Honor stand to gain, as do Chinese automakers. Still, any gains aren't guaranteed since doing business in Russia has become riddled with problems, spanning everything from logistics to finance.
Also at TorrentFreak.
Russian Baikal 48-Core CPU Die Shots, Benchmarks Emerge
Twitter user Fritzchens Fritz has managed to obtain a sample of Baikal Electronics' 48-core BE-S1000 server-grade system-on-chip (SoC) and throw it under an infrared microscope to reveal its internals. In addition, some benchmark results of the SoC have surfaced.
Baikal Electronics has developed several system-on-chips for different devices to replace x86 processors from PCs and various compute appliances made in Russia. However, the pinnacle of the company's design prowess should have been its BE-S1000 server-grade SoC with 48 Arm Cortex-A75 cores, which the company managed to tape out and produce the first sample using TSMC's 16FFC fabrication technology, but which will never be released commercially due to sanctions against Russia for its invasion in Ukraine.
Also at TechPowerUp.
TSMC Ships First Batch of Baikal BE-M1000 ARM CPUs
UK Sanctions Russian Microprocessor Makers, Banning Them From ARM
BITBLAZE Titan BM15 Arm Linux Laptop Features Russian Baikal-M1 Processor
Former Co-Owner of Russia's Baikal Microelectronics Goes Bankrupt
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @03:23PM (17 children)
This is how you fast track innovation. Now Russia "must" build out their own designs and production.
(Score: 3, Informative) by DeathMonkey on Tuesday May 10 2022, @03:31PM (2 children)
Oh no, we're all so scared of that competition!
Q: What do you call something that doesn't fit up your ass and doesn't vibrate?
A: A Soviet made vibrating butt plug!
(Score: 3, Funny) by Opportunist on Tuesday May 10 2022, @04:01PM (1 child)
Q: How do you know the KGB is bugging your home?
A: There is now a new wardrobe in your living room that you have no key for.
(Score: 2) by fraxinus-tree on Tuesday May 10 2022, @06:31PM
(the same question): your landline phone suddenly has clear connection
(Score: 2) by DannyB on Tuesday May 10 2022, @04:05PM (12 children)
They can create their own design / implementation of RISC V. There will be a guaranteed software base for their hardware. They can (like in the Java world) cooperate on interface, compete on implementation.
A ban on nuclear weapons could be enforced by the threat of use of a stockpile of banned nuclear weapons.
(Score: 4, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @04:32PM (8 children)
> create their own design / implementation of RISC V
Those with power in the West are greedy idiots. They outsourced most production to China, even shipping over entire factories to China and inducing their old employees to train their Chinese replacements (e.g., AC Delco [General Motors subsidiary; the same GM execs and shareholders bailed out by working class and middle class taxpayers] shipping over an entire factory of machine tools, and telling the US employees they could have 3 months more pay if they trained their replacements, or could go fuck off right now instead).
Then these idiots suddenly realized that China had taken what they had given it, and (for these industrial products) no longer needed the West in any way other than to buy their shit.
Now, the idiots are freaking out, and trying to prevent China (and now Russia) from using any Western technology where they think they can hurt a Chinese competitor by restricting access (e.g., Huawai), or anything to hurt Russia in any way. So, now China and Russia and any other country with a shred of independence from the US will develop their own technology. Eventually, they will export this tech, and will very likely out compete any western company. Thus making western tech companies as irrelevant as western industrial manufacturers*.
* The West still makes weapons though. So, we can also count on these greedy morons to ensure a continuous stream of never ending wars. E.g., constantly running war exercises off the coast of China and Russia to provoke tensions. And, when Russia tried to join NATO, refusing them, so they could remain a threat to justify insane military expenditures. A few terrorists hiding out in a cave didn't work out as justification for spending on F-35s and ballistic missiles. Now that Russia invaded Ukraine, military corporate welfare payments are going to go through the roof.
(Score: 4, Insightful) by DeathMonkey on Tuesday May 10 2022, @05:40PM (3 children)
Big shocker, China and Russia are not the same!
The issues and solutions we have to those issue will likely differ because of that fact.
IP theft resulting in a massive manufacturing base pumping out cheap knockoffs is something we should concern ourselves with regarding China. Russia.....not so much.
(Score: 3, Interesting) by driverless on Wednesday May 11 2022, @12:42PM (2 children)
Yup, very much so. To reply to the comment that started this thread:
What with? Russia is now a pariah state with no access to anything they'll need to do this. They'd have to recreate forty years of worldwide research and investment into semiconductor design and manufacturing, starting from almost nothing, all the while operating in a barely-functional kleptocracy in which 90% of the funding they're supposed to have will get diverted into various oligarch's coffers. Russia has a handful of barely-solvent semiconductor companies struggling to run an even smaller number of antique fabs, and that's it. Outside of stuff smuggled in from China, there's nothing there, and no chance of there being anything there in the future.
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 11 2022, @05:10PM (1 child)
They may have to "recreate" forty years of worldwide research, but it's not like they're going to re-invent it all from scratch. They've had forty years of watching what the world has done to learn from and they have their own researchers who are entirely capable of doing state of the art design work. What took the world 40 years to create from nothing will take substantially less to recreate with the knowledge that was learned. Standing on the shoulders of giants so to speak.
Russia didn't have any incentive to go down this road, until now. But now that they're forced to, they just might surprise the rest of the world (some day).
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 12 2022, @02:03AM
Those sanctions may hurt them though. Even the US companies don't build everything themselves - they need stuff from Japan, Germany, Korea, Taiwan, etc.
For so many things we depend on very companies sometimes even a single company.
See also: https://www.stiftung-nv.de/sites/default/files/understanding_the_global_chip_shortages.pdf [stiftung-nv.de]
(Score: 3, Interesting) by RS3 on Tuesday May 10 2022, @06:57PM
Well stated; you have a good grasp of big-picture.
But remember, USA, by definition and its name, is a collection of semi-independent states, corporations, social groups, values, etc., and operates as such. We have constant internal fighting and scrapping that reduces our efficiency, drains precious resources, and slows progress and innovation (yet amazingly we're usually leading the rest of the world, and generally open and free with sharing what we learn and have). IE, we compete with ourselves.
And, as is well discussed here and everywhere, we have a comparatively weak government that is largely owned and run by the all-too short-sighted greedy corporations. (I've said for years we need a People's Lobby- congress should listen to We the People _more_ than corporate lobbyists).
China, for sure, and to some extent Russia, operate as a whole, a collective, competing mostly with USA and the rest of "the west".
Japan is an interesting example of friendly cooperative mild respectful competition. S. Korea is somewhat this way too.
I've noticed for more than 30 years that the world- competition and trade, is not a level playing field. What you've pointed out is exactly what one would expect to be happening based on the years of setup.
Now the question is: how to fix it.
Experience enables you to recognize a mistake every time you repeat it.
(Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @07:39PM (1 child)
By "The West" you really mean Shabbos Goy slave states with Jew subversives and White race traitors installed in nearly every position of power..
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 11 2022, @06:48PM
Poor nazi baaaaby, can we get you a lollipop? Yeah? Lollipop make you feel better?
(Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday May 11 2022, @04:55AM
I roll my eyes at this nonsense. All Russia had to do was not be that black hat in that pathetic morality play. It just wasn't hard.
Now, you're bragging about how their "shred of independence" tech is going to outcompete western technology? With what economy? With what independence? With what tech?
(Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @05:14PM (2 children)
In the long run, isn't widespread support for RISC V all but inevitable?
And I don't mean just for the Russians. An open and free as in gratis standard is mighty appealing. Control your own future and not pay someone else for the privilege of doing business. It won't happen tomorrow, but it is surprising how fast a change can happen: consider the rise of Linux against Windows and the extinct Unixes. Since microprocessor fabrication has for many years been decoupled from design (ironically enough, ARM pioneered this), microprocessor development is more like the software development model than it used to be, and open source software for infrastructure has taken the world by storm.
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @09:15PM (1 child)
Hopefully yes, but not inevitable.
Sun's Sparc was freed a long time ago, and it has not taken over the world-- even Fujitsu is abandoning it. IBM's Power is an open ISA... ditto. MIPS was freed a almost 5 years ago-- I haven't seen anything new using MIPS announced since.
I hope not only a free ISA takes over e.g., RiscV, but also a free asic implementation (to the extent that is possible). Bunnie's idea of firewalling off all proprietary IP blocks e.g., from the fab with small easily auditable shims would probably be the way to go here (couldn't find a link to the video presentation he did, but there is probably a link hidden somewhere on his site www.bunniestudios.com/blog.
(Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 11 2022, @12:34AM
The difference is those ISAs did not start out free. There was one company that controlled it and then opened it up as basically abandonware.
(Score: 3, Funny) by FatPhil on Tuesday May 10 2022, @05:01PM
Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
(Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @03:46PM (3 children)
What are the real implications of this? Speaking out of ignorance and nativity, I think it doesn't really accomplish that much?
1. Baikai and MCST are banned from ARM, meaning they no longer have legal permission to do anything with them.
2. Russia doesn't care about about British laws, especially as they conflict with national security, so authorizes Baikai and MCST to continue to work with ARM.
3. Baikai and MCST continue to produce chips from the existing designs they already have.
So much of society is built on the assumption that society rules are valid, but once they aren't (e.g. there is war), then those assumptions break down. So really, what are the actual implications of this ban?
(Score: 4, Insightful) by Opportunist on Tuesday May 10 2022, @03:59PM (1 child)
it may mean a quid-pro-quo, i.e. you don't respect our patents, so we don't have to respect yours anymore either.
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 11 2022, @05:15PM
Well, that implies that Russia has valuable patents the rest of the world needs. Which also implies they aren't just a consumer of information, they have the minds and means to contribute their own information.
We aren't seeing "the end of Russian microprocessor makers", what we're looking at is Russia "forking microprocessor design". Time may show this fork to be dead end. Or maybe change for the better.
(Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @04:14PM
As pointed out in the "Continues" section, Baikai and MCST don't make the chips themselves, they use foreign foundaries, which are most likely not going to keep making them while the sanctions are in place. The in-house capabilities they have are for much less capable chips and that they are expected to get up to 2006-level technology by 2030. So this is a big deal for them.
(Score: 3, Informative) by Snotnose on Tuesday May 10 2022, @03:46PM (2 children)
AFAIK nobody "owns" it so nobody can tell Putin paws off.
Still, it's gonna take Russia decades to get back to where they were 3 months ago.
The inventor of auto-correct has died. The funnel will be held tomato.
(Score: 4, Insightful) by fraxinus-tree on Tuesday May 10 2022, @06:36PM (1 child)
Russia has no fabs. China will extort the hell out of them
(Score: 3, Insightful) by Snotnose on Tuesday May 10 2022, @08:56PM
That is the issue. Russia has top notch designers, but are 100% incapable of making the chips they design.
Russia is farked for a decade or three over Putin's invasion.
The inventor of auto-correct has died. The funnel will be held tomato.
(Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @04:04PM
The walk to the gas station is for your own good.
(Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 10 2022, @07:46PM (7 children)
This whole war and the "western" outcry is all the doing of the Talmudic International Jew. They will not be satisfied until they have completely destroyed Russia, and then every White nation (formally, thanks to the Jew) in the world. They must be purged from all White nations before it's too late. First, Whitey will need to stop brainwashing their own children with Jew propaganda as a religion.
(Score: 2, Touché) by DeathMonkey on Tuesday May 10 2022, @08:01PM (5 children)
Yep, and it's totally Ukraine that has the Nazi problem too!
(Score: 2) by unauthorized on Wednesday May 11 2022, @04:49AM (4 children)
I suppose it could be that they are just massive fans of the aesthetics [wikimedia.org], but you have to admit it stretches credibility to assume it's on accident or that they are just doing it for the memes. Sure, they've toned it down recently but a paramilitary group of "patriots" with a history of conducting warcrimes whose membership includes 10%-20% self-identified Nazis as members is uhhh.... I mean, they welcome open Nazis in their ranks, they are founded by people who ape nazi aesthetics, their model states are "Israel and Japan" which white nationalists are known to fetishize as ethnostates, and they wear permutations of SS symbology. I'm all for giving people the benefit of the doubt and hey, maybe they are just 4chan denizens shitposting IRL, but surely you have to admit all of this evidence, circumstantial as it may be, does warrant some suspicion.
(Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday May 11 2022, @05:03AM (3 children)
Warrant suspicion of what? Why again does it matter that there's Ukrainian nazis?
(Score: 1) by unauthorized on Wednesday May 11 2022, @05:56AM (2 children)
Because the statement "Yep, and it's totally Ukraine that has the Nazi problem too!" can either be interpreted as dismissing the existence of nazis in Ukraine. I suppose it could also be interpreted to that they are not "the nazi problem", but that would be awkward wording.
(Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday May 11 2022, @01:20PM
Given that Putin was the one pulling the Nazi-style invasion of Ukraine, I would agree that Ukraine isn't the nazi problem here.
(Score: 2) by DeathMonkey on Wednesday May 11 2022, @02:57PM
I was pointing out that the guy defending Russia sounded like a fucking Nazi....
(Score: -1, Offtopic) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 11 2022, @01:49AM
Last time i checked, jews were white. Does that mean that it is already too late, and everybody is a jew now?
(Score: 2) by ledow on Wednesday May 11 2022, @07:49AM (1 child)
ARM doesn't make chips, it licences the design.
Putin has also basically just said to Russian suppliers to ignore IP to produce what they need.
The Russian companies can presumably make chips and already have those ARM designs, just not the licence.
This won't hinder anything, whatsoever.
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 11 2022, @07:13PM
You missed the part where russia can't make the chips. Taiwan actually makes the chips, so they'd have to convince those foundries to ignore the license moratorium, which they're not going to do. So to make the chips themselves, they'll have to set up their own foundries and that's where they are a decade or two behind.
(Score: 2) by r_a_trip on Wednesday May 11 2022, @02:42PM (1 child)
Well, this is a paper tiger in so far as it is unenforceable on Russian territory. Putin can just claim imminent domain and waive any rights of foreign entities.
The trouble is Russia's fabbing prowess (or lack there of). Lowest node they can currently produce is 65nm. So they either have to drastically scale back the bloat in their software (going back to Risc OS?) or they will have to go massively parallel with heatsinks the size of a space heater.
They are planning to go 28nm in 2030, so they are about a little less than 2 decades behind. They say necessity is the mother of all invention, so this might bring a renaisance to the Russian semiconductor sector. It might even be wildly successful in the secluded, post-invasion Russian bubble.
(Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 12 2022, @04:54AM
The thing is: so what if they find themselves two decades "behind"?
You just get on with life and enjoy it, right?
But in the end, they'll just re-purchase off China and India. What's the US/EU/Oz going to do about it, exactly?