Chasing Pixels
Keep up to date on graphics chips, controllers and processors, that are changing the course of the computer graphics (CG) industry.

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By Dr. Jon Peddie
Founded in early 1993, Nvidia set out to revolutionize the PC and console gaming market with 3D. They succeeded beyond even their wildest dreams, but not without a few bumps and bruises. It just made them smarter and stronger.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Yamaha was a developer of video display controllers or processors (VDP) in the late 1980s. The company made IBM compatible CGA display controllers such as the YGY603.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Intel has a long history in PC graphics chips and in late 2020 announced a new discrete GPU (dGPU), the Xe Max. The company has taken several runs building a discrete graphics chip to take on the market leader but has had a challenging time. They never seemed to address building a dGPU with the same seriousness and resources as the CPU.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
In 1997 3Dlabs developed its Glint Gamma processor, the first programmable transform and lighting (T&L) engine for its Glint workstation graphics chips and even coining the terms GPU—geometry processor unit, before Nvidia announced its graphics processor unit (GPU).
By Dr. Jon Peddie
In SLI mode, two Voodoo2 add-in-boards (AIBs) could run in parallel, with each one drawing every other line of the display.  The original Voodoo Graphics also had SLI capability but was only used in the arcade and professional markets.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Although not really a graphics chip in that it directly manipulated any pixels, the Geometry Engine introduced in 1981 was a breakthrough in VLSI of critical mathematics functions used for graphics.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
In 1989 S3 was founded and began development of a 2D graphics controller. In 1991 the company introduced it S3 911 chip, as a Windows (or GUI) accelerator. The company did very well and introduced a string of 2D controllers.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
In the fall of 1995, ATI announced its first combination of 2D, 3D, and MPEG-1 accelerator chip under the name 3D Rage. The 3D Xpression add-in board (AIB) was based on the 3D Rage graphics chip and featured elemental 3D acceleration, one year behind the pioneer Matrox Millennium PC 3D chip, and at the same time as the S3 Virge.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
The Coronavirus, COVID-19, has forced many of us, maybe most of us to work at home. For many workers, even some working in the tech industry, performing specific tasks at home can be difficult or require a special set up.
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Breakthrough design, genuinely disruptive Silicon Graphics had been a leader and highly respected workstation developer that rose to fame and fortune based on its introduction of a VLSI geometry processor in 1981. In the ensuing years, it developed leading graphics technologies at the high end. A high-end super high-performance workstation…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Following Moore’s law, integrated graphics have become quite powerful and popular Integrated graphics have been with us since 1991 in the workstation space, and since 1995 in the PC, and earlier than that in workstations. They have now found their way into smartphones, tablets, automobiles, and game consoles. Integrated graphics…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
A 1993 highly integrated graphics chip designed with a system focus In 1993, facing heavy competition from Sun, HP set the design goal for its new 32-bit HP 9000/712 workstation to reach performance levels of 1992-era workstations and servers at a fraction of their fabrication costs. Their target was the…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
2019 in review and guess at what’s coming It’s that time of year when we pause, take a breath and say, whoa, the year’s over? What happened? Where are we headed? As the above image portrays, it’s a lot clearer looking back than forward. 2019 was the year ray tracing…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Big investments, little results, major embarrassments By Jon Peddie Intel has tried several times to get into the stand-alone graphics chip market. Its first attempt in 1982 was the cross licensing of the NEC 7220, [1] which became the Intel 82720. Then in 1983, Intel made the iSBX 275 Multibus-based…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
The first image processing board set the file format standard we still use AT&T used to be into advanced graphics and image processing and many of the leading concepts that survive and underpin today’s products were created there. Electronic Photography and Imaging Center (EPICenter), co-founded by Carl Calabria, was AT&T’s…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Longest produced graphics chip ever Dorval Canada-based Matrox is the oldest continuously operating graphics add-in board company in the world — they started in 1979 before IBM introduced the PC. Matrox’s first AIB was the ALT-256 for S-100 bus computers, released in 1978. ATI started seven years later (also in…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Trying to transition from CAD to Commodity PCs the company developed a great chip Artist Graphics founded 1979 by Horace and Robert Beale, in Minneapolis released their first add-in board, the Artist 1 in November of 1982, based on an NEC 7220 and sporting a gigantic 1024 × 768 resolution.…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
The Granddaddy of Tiling Designs In 1996 as the 3D graphics chip market was in its ascendency, with new companies declaring devices every month, Microsoft shocked the industry by introducing a radically different approach — tiling. The conventional architecture for a graphics chip had been (and still is) what’s known…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
A four-year tortuous journey that turned the company around By Jon Peddie It wasn’t an April fool’s joke in 1997 when Nvidia released the RIVA 128, based on the NV3 media accelerator. However, it was almost the company’s last gasp. The story begins in 1993 when Nvidia (which has gone…
By Dr. Jon Peddie
Voodoo changed the gaming landscape with 3D This is the latest installment of a series of short articles about graphics chips, controllers and processors, that changed the course of the computer graphics (CG) industry. 3Dfx was founded in 1994 in San Jose, California by former employees of Silicon Graphics (SGI)…
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   About the Author
Dr. Jon Peddie is one of the pioneers of the graphics industry and formed Jon Peddie Research (JPR) to provide customer intimate consulting and market forecasting services where he explores the developments in computer graphics technology to advance economic inclusion and improve resource efficiency.

Recently named one of the most influential analysts, Peddie regularly advises investors in the technology sector. He is an advisor to the U.N., several companies in the computer graphics industry, an advisor to the Siggraph Executive Committee, and in 2018 he was accepted as an ACM Distinguished Speaker. Peddie is a senior and lifetime member of IEEE, and a former chair of the IEEE Super Computer Committee, and the former president of The Siggraph Pioneers. In 2015 he was given the Life Time Achievement award from the CAAD society.