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Re: Audi and Intel

I was perusing the comp.sys.intel newsgroup and was startled to see Audi's
referenced!  There are a couple of "interesting" followups there too.  I
wonder how correct these guys are on the facts (regarding Audi).  It's also
interesting to see that Audi is "dead".

In article <3clubk$4im@newstand.syr.edu>, was written:

> Jesse A Ernst (jae@lns598.lns.cornell.edu) wrote:
> >As with so many of these posts, I think you're missing the point.
> >intel's mistake is forcing customers to justify that they really need
> >what they already paid for.  They messed up... they should just admit
> >it, apologize to their customers, and tell them they'll fix things as
> >quickly as they can.
> >Audi was similarly stupid, and also got burned by having the facts 
> >dragged out.  The Audi "issue" was only on automatic audi 5000's.
> >It definitely was a flaw with the car... the throttle would occasionally
> >open up suddenly, and the engine vibration from racing in neutral would
> >throw the car into gear.  Their handling was even worse than intel's.
> >They claimed that their customers had simply confused the gas and brake
> >pedels.  Eventually, they fixed the problem.  I don't know anything about
> >whether or not their sales recovered (for a while, NYC garages wouldn't 
> >allow automatic Audi 5000's).  Why a well respected car maker would blame
> >their customers for their mistake, I have no idea.
>    Ok, I am reading this thread with great interest and I even received a
> few letters about it.
>    Jesse has hit the nail on the head.  The problem with Audi was not the
> car.  There really was nothing technically wrong with the car.  (Although,
> putting the gas pedal and the brake too close could be seen as a design
> flaw).
>   The problem with Audi was the way they handled it.  What they should have
> done is immediatly offer to fix the problem.  If they determine it is driver
> error, then they should find a way to prevent it from happening.
>    As I recall, they put a lock on the shift lever so that you could only
> shift out of park with your foot firmly on the break.  However, as Jesse
> points out, it was too little too late.
>   Whether Audi was at fault is not relevant.  Nor is the fact that Audi is
> still popular in Europe relevent.  This was a case study in bungled public
> relations and Intel is following the same path.
>   My point about not seeing many Audis is still relevent.  Regardless of
> what "the truth" was, people perceived the cars as being unsafe and the car
> maker as not caring.
>    My point is that Intel is in a WORSE position becuase, with the Pentium,
> there IS a defect.  They need to handle this BETTER than Audi.  Especially
> now the AMD, Cyrix and NextGen are all gearing up to make Pentium clones and
> IBM/Apple/Motorola are making the PowerPC.
>    Remeber, IBM was the only game in town until they screwed up with the
> marketing of the AT and Compaq moved in.
>    Intel is in a VERY precarious position right now.  With the release of
> Windows NT on multiple platforms, coupled with Microsofts requirement that
> all Win '95 apps be NT compatible, it is going to be very easy for people to
> change platforms.  "What, I can run the same software on a PowerPC?"
>   This defect is Intel's worst nightmare and I don't blame them panicing
> over it.  They should because it is really going to hurt.
>   However, what I do blame them for is not immediatly disclosing the problem
> when they knew about it and for stonewalling people trying to get
> replacements.  I bought my computer in late August.  If I had known then
> that their was a problem, I would have waited until it was fixed.
>    To those of you who are involved in some way with Audi, I was not trying
> to attack the car, only the way they handled the situation, just as I am not
> blaming Intel for releasing a defective chip.  It happens.  But, they have
> an obligation to fix the problem, not tell people that they don't deserve
> the same level of support as other people.
> --
> /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\
> \      Mark E. Levitt          /    "I was thinking of the immortal  /
> /   melevitt@mailbox.syr.edu   \    words of Socrates who said,      \
> \         		       /     'I drank what?'"  	             /
> / 			       \			             \
> \/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/

Brad Shurter - AOT Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM
 87545  (505)665-1122, E-mail: rshurter@lanl.gov, 73023.533@compuserve.com