Intel's Chairman Urges Tech Innovation At CeBIT

Intel has maintained a relatively low profile at CeBIT this year in terms of new product announcements, but there are still plenty of Intel chips to be found at the expo. The chip maker is apparently looking to keep it that way for years to come, with Chairman Craig Barrett today urging the technology industry at large and nations around the world to "innovate and invest" in order to boost economic development and solve global challenges.

Speaking to an audience at CeBIT 2009,
Barrett -- who has announced his intentions to retire in May -- firmly stated that innovation and technology were "the backbone of the modern economy," suggesting that now is no time to stop innovating despite the softening nature of the very economy he spoke of. Continuing on, he noted that there are "three gauges nations can tune to compete." Curious as to what they were? Listen in: "Investing in good education produces smart people. Investing in research and development produces smart ideas. And, creating the right environment in which smart people can develop smart ideas. These steps would stimulate economic growth, jobs and new opportunities including future collaborations among private industry, government and academia."

While you may be wondering what gives some Intel head honcho the right to hand out advice to thousands of technology firms that made the trek to Germany, Craig is also a technology ambassador that travels to some 30 countries per year as chairman of the United Nations Global Alliance for ICT and Development. He noted that in his experience, nations that invest wisely in technology are better equipped to handle challenges, while countries that delay or ignore completely the need for technological innovation typically find themselves at a "global disadvantage."

He closed things with a message we personally find quite powerful: "Today, we can lay the groundwork for growth. Many nations and businesses try to save their way out of a recession. It is much better to invest our way out." For those who follow Apple, many credit Steve Jobs' decision to invest and development a tiny, pocket-friendly media player that could only hold a thousand songs and would retail at around $500 during a time when many weren't spending on tech. Now, that little player is a mainstay in the digital music space, with "iPod" becoming synonymous with "MP3 player." Looking at Barrett's remarks critically, we're happy to say he's practicing what he's preaching, as Intel just recently decided to invest $7 billion over the next few years on fabrication and R&D. And hey, it's not like Intel is really doing too bad for itself these days anyway -- maybe this guy does know a thing or two about progress.

Tags:  Intel, CPU, CeBIT