A Conversation With Ed Caracappa, Director of Global Sales & Business Development at AMD.
I have been doing interviews with the legends of the CAD, CAE and PLM industry for a while now. I must admit, I always wanted to interview someone from hardware sector, especially graphics card! Which helps CAD, CAM, CAE software to enhance its performance and upgrade user experience.
I’ve always been curious to know something more about graphics card technology, to me; it was a great opportunity to interview Mr. Ed Caracappa, Director of Global Sales & Business Development, Professional Graphics at AMD. I tried to learn more about him, his company, products for CAD, AMD’s latest focus, direction and strategies for India. Here is the interview:
Ed Caracappa, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your professional activities?
Well, I am an electrical engineering graduate from University of Arizona. I started my career as a production engineer with Motorola. But, soon realized that shop floor job does not interest me much! So, I switched to sales and marketing job. Before, joining AMD, I had an opportunity to work with esteemed organizations like NextComputing, LLC, Escape Studios and BOXX Technologies. I am with AMD since January 2012 and take care of global sales & business development.
Tell us about your organization?
Sure, AMD is fortune 500 company, our mission is to deliver the most visually rich and meaningful digital experiences to every technology user we touch. AMD is the second-largest global supplier of microprocessors. After acquisition of ATI Technologies in 2006 company dominated CPU as well as GPU market worldwide.
Established in 1969, with it’s headquarter at Sunnyvale, California. At present, we have more than 10,000 employees worldwide. With the long history of innovations, company has achieved its revenue targets. AMD has record growth of $5.42 billion for year 2012.
Please tell us about AMD’s latest FirePro W-series graphics cards and what are its advantages for professional CAD users?
FirePro W-series workstation graphics delivers incredible performance, superb visual quality and outstanding multidisplay design experiences to CAD/CAE professionals. We offer mid-range boards for mainstream CAD applications like AMD FirePro™ W5000, AMD FirePro™ W5000 DVI and AMD FirePro™ W7000.
AMD FirePro™ W8000 and AMD FirePro™ W9000 are dedicated boards for high-end CAD, CAE, FEA and CFD applications. All W-series cards are single-slot solution that provides smoother interactivity when working with complex 3D models and allows design engineers to quickly visualize and render designs.
AMD’s FirePro W-Series is based on the Graphics Core Next (GCN) architecture and offers more memory bandwidth, which makes it more than five times faster than competing solution. W-series is tested and certified for its enhanced 3D performance capability by all mainstream CAD/CAE vendors.
What performance advantages with AMD FirePro graphics cards can be expected by CAD users and why?
Today, the CAD models are becoming increasingly complex, visually rich and used for further analysis, and simulation. Many organizations are using CAD models directly for creating marketing material and presentations. So, using right professional graphics solution has become very critical to accelerate the functionality of CAD tools that speeds up 3D rendering and visualization, allows large CAD models to load faster, run simulations in parallel without impacting the quality of the graphics.
AMD works closely with all relevant software vendors in the CAx space, and gets graphics hardware tested for every new release. Our cards are certified for all major CAD tools. Users achieve 3x graphics performance increase with SolidWorks 2013 when using the new AMD FirePro W-series graphics cards.
Recently we had a collaboration with PTC, we now offer powerful new GPU-accelerated functionality in PTC Creo Parametric 2.0 that speeds up 3D rendering of transparent surfaces by up to 900% through the use of “OIT” (order independent transparency) - an advanced OpenGL programming method.
Similarly, Siemens PLM Femap and AMD FirePro have become best choice for the engineering and simulation professionals. Use of VBO’s (vertex buffer objects) running on the AMD FirePro W5000 and W7000 graphic cards has resulted in exceptional Femap 11 software performance.
What is AMD Eyefinity technology and what impact it has on CAD workflow?
It’s a technology that enables user to run up to six independent and simultaneous displays with a single graphics card. It supports advance workflows, where CAD users switch between applications including analysis, simulation and data management. User can see more detail than ever, increasing his workflow productivity. Can manage multitasking more efficiently, and view more data, applications, and images at once.
What is your product roadmap for the professional graphics market?
We have product line that enhance and accelerate the user experience across PCs, gaming systems, digital devices, CAD applications and cloud servers. The AMD Radeon is positioned for the gaming and main stream PC market. V and W-series are for the professional graphics card market. We also have partnered with the workstation OEMs, who use our cards for building professional workstations.
AMD applications are developed using OpenCL (Open Computing Language). OpenCL can natively talk to a large range of devices and its easy synchronization makes it more flexible. So, we clearly have the advantage over our competitors when developing a new product with the open source language.
Tell us about AMD India, do you have design and development center in India?
India is unique! Lot of well educated and technically sound people coupled with passion, talent and potential are easily available. AMD India plays a significant role in the design of microprocessors, AMD Family of Accelerated Processing Units (APU) SoCs, graphics and media solutions.
We have two design centers in India, located in Hyderabad and Bengaluru. With top-tier engineering talent, state of the art facilities, and world class management, AMD India has been delivering world-class, cost-effective System-On-Chips (SOCs), Hardware and Software platforms and high quality Intellectual Property.
AMD India is also responsible for AMD’s sales & marketing activities in the ‘India Region’ (comprising of India, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka), and is focused on expanding our market share in the rapidly growing PC and graphics market in this region.
AMD India strives to recruit and retain the best talent, make AMD a great place to work, and be an integral part of the AMD family by continuing to contribute significantly to AMD’s success.
Please share with us the AMD India strategy and how is your sales network here?
We have very good relationship with global OEMs. We work with them and offer bundle products for PCs, gaming systems, digital devices, CAD workstations and cloud servers.
We also work with the local VARs of CAD vendors, like PTC and SolidWorks Re-sellers across India to fulfill the requirement of the CAD designers. VARs are the right people who can guide the CAD users to select the best and certified graphics card as per his requirement. This year we had done 6 road shows in India and we are overwhelmed with the response our products got from the people across India.
How are AMD products doing with small and medium companies in India?
It’s not only the automotive giants like Tata and Mahindra and Mahindra are our customers In India. We have had many wins especially in the education, consumer products, medical imagining, defense and R&D segments. Our client includes reputed companies like BHEL, TACO, DRDO and Godrej.
Small company like Hema Engineering in Pune also uses our graphics card to enhance and accelerate the functionality of their CAD tools. There are many such small scale engineering and service providers using our solutions across India.
Any message for DailyCADCAM’s readers?
I’m excited with the growth we had in India for last two years. Indian mechanical, civil, architectural, medical and film industry are breaking the new barriers with the high quality products, infrastructure and services. We have a deep passion for graphics and visual processing and AMD is eagerly looking forward to digitize your needs.
So designers, if you face any issue working with the large CAD models, 3D rendering and visualization, running simulations, whatever! Do talk to our local channel partners to get the best possible solution to accelerate you work.