You probably heard that TSMC recently won a big commitment from Apple for volume production of the A8 processor. That's just one significant data point for the foundry's strong market position and an indication of its future success.
Market researchers say TSMC supplies as much as 80 percent of the world's 28nm silicon and will earn about $6 billion from the node in 2013. But it wasn't always that way.
Do you remember the Bay Area earthquake on October 17, 1989? I do, because I had just completed my 14th interview at VLSI Technology and my hiring manager, Cliff Roe, had told me he was preparing an offer for me to join what I considered the best cell-based IC vendor in the world.
After a few days of clean up and recovery after the quake, I got my offer and joined VLSI as Philips' alliance manager. I already knew about Philips' efforts to ramp up a CMOS process at a company in Taiwan. That kickstarted TSMC, but I didn't realize its full significance.
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