Inside Intel: Andy Grove and the Rise of the World's Most Powerful Chip Company

Inside Intel: Andy Grove and the Rise of the World's Most Powerful Chip Company

by Tim Jackson
     
 

Named one of the Best Business Books of 1997 by Business Week, Inside Intel is the gripping business saga of a company that rose to dominance through technological innovation, and maintained its leadership against competitors through aggressive marketing, tough business tactics, and liberal use of legal firepower. In his in-depth portrait of Intel,

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Overview

Named one of the Best Business Books of 1997 by Business Week, Inside Intel is the gripping business saga of a company that rose to dominance through technological innovation, and maintained its leadership against competitors through aggressive marketing, tough business tactics, and liberal use of legal firepower. In his in-depth portrait of Intel, the first history/expose of the company, Financial Times columnist Tim Jackson reveals that:*Intel's corporate culture is determinedly secretive and authoritarian.*The company retains its own force of private investigators to prevent its employees from going astray.*Intel routinely uses the threat of lawsuits against workers and rivals.At the center of this story is Andy Grove, Intel's high-profile CEO and chairman, once a penniless immigrant who waited tables to put himself through college. It is Grove who has made the unpopular decisions which have kept Intel at the top of the chip market. Exhaustively researched from court records, unpublished documents, and interviews with Intel's competitors, partners, and past and present employees, Jackson traces the company's spectacular failures and successes, as well as the powerful human struggles that have made Intel one of the most competitive players in a high-stakes game.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Founded in 1968, Intel now controls more than 80% of the market for microprocessors that run computers, and is second only to Microsoft in influence in the personal computer industry. The company's rise to market dominance is generally attributed to its current CEO, Andy Grove, who, along with electronics industry visionaries Gordon Moore and Bob Noyce, launched the company in what was to become Silicon Valley, a center that Intel played an important role in creating. In detailing Intel's climb to the most important computer chip manufacturer in the world, Jackson, a columnist for Financial Times, delivers a no-holds-barred look at the tactics the led Intel to its present position. According to the author, Grove created an incredibly hardworking environment by using such tools as the "Late List," which required employees who reported to work after 8:00 to sign in. Although a seemingly minor rule, the Late List helped set the tone for the dedication Grove expected from his staff. Once Intel established itself in the computer industry, Grove turned efforts to grabbing market share through such wide-ranging efforts as aggressive marketing and, on the more sly side, suing rivals and potential rivals to prevent and/or delay their competition. Although Jackson writes for a general audience, those who understand computer technology will enjoy this well-researched study most. (Oct.)
Library Journal
Hard-driven CEO and chairman Grove has dominated Intel since shortly after its founding in 1968. He focused the company on setting goals and achieving results. As Jackson, a columnist for the Financial Times, points out in his excellent book, Grove was also largely responsible for Intel's arrogance toward customers, aggression toward competitors, and pettiness toward employees. Intel's success came from being on the cutting edge of semiconductor technology with innovative products like the DRAM, EPROM, and microprocessor. Nevertheless, lack of foresight lost Intel its memory-chip business, and only a last-minute marketing effort saved its dominant position in microprocessors. The author draws on interviews as well as published and unpublished sources to produce this well-written and -documented business and technical history. Highly recommended for all libraries as a window into one of the world's most important companies and its methods.Lawrence Maxted, Gannon Univ., Erie, Pa.
Kirkus Reviews
A lively, accessible, and informative overview of Intel Corp., the Silicon Valley phenomenon that bestrides the widening world of semiconductor devices like a colossus.

With but minimal cooperation from the company, Financial Times columnist Jackson (The Next Battleground, 1992) was obliged to rely on interviews, court papers, and on-the-record material to piece together its story. He nonetheless makes a fine job of reconstructing the high-tech enterprise's history, from its 1968 founding by Robert Noyce (co-creator of the integrated circuit) and Gordon Moore through the present day, when Pentium series chips dominate the market for PC microprocessors. Along the way, the author details how Intel achieved and sustained a leadership position by means of technical innovation, painstaking attention to fabrication techniques (which now permit millions of active transistor elements to be deposited on substrates measured in microns), the capacity to commit billions of dollars to capital investment during good times and bad, and a willingness to play rough with key employees who defect, as well as potentially troublesome rivals. Under the focused direction of CEO Andrew Grove (a refugee from Communist Hungary whose managerial style is reflected in the title of his 1996 book, Only the Paranoid Survive), Jackson shows, the transnational company does not shy from using litigation to gain or retain a competitive edge. Nor, he notes, does Intel like to admit error, as attested to by its attempt to stonewall the 1994 disclosure that the first Pentium chips might make long-division mistakes once in every nine billion calculations. Even so, the secretive and authoritarian outfit continues to be immensely profitable.

A first-rate anecdotal briefing on a consequential supplier of small wonders that are at the heart of a latter-day industrial revolution.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780452276437
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/01/1998
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
432
Product dimensions:
5.46(w) x 7.96(h) x 0.91(d)

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