Late last night, PC Perspective confirmed rumors that Raja Koduri, AMD's Radeon Technologies Group (RTG) Senior Vice President and Chief Architect, is to go on sabbatical. Sourcing Raja’s internal letter to the RTG team, he will be taking leave from September 25 until an unspecified date in December, to spend time with his family. Dr Lisa Su, AMD's CEO, will lead RTG in the interim.

As reproduced by Ryan Shrout, Raja’s letter is as follows:

RTG Team,

You haven’t heard from me collectively in a while – a symptom not only of the whirlwind of launching Vega, but simply of the huge number of demands on my time since the formation of RTG. Looking back over this short period, it is an impressive view. We have delivered 6 straight quarters of double-digit growth in graphics, culminating in the launch of Vega and being back in high-performance. What we have done with Vega is unparalleled. We entered the high-end gaming, professional workstation and machine intelligence markets with Vega in a very short period of time. The demand for Vega (and Polaris!) is fantastic, and overall momentum for our graphics is strong.

Incredibly, we as AMD also managed to spectacularly re-enter the high-performance CPU segments this year. We are all exceptionally proud of Ryzen, Epyc and Threadripper. The computing world is not the same anymore and the whole world is cheering for AMD. Congratulations and thanks to those of you in RTG who helped see these products through. The market for high-performance computing is on an explosive growth trajectory driven by machine intelligence, visual cloud, blockchain and other exciting new workloads. Our vision of immersive and instinctive computing is within grasp. As we enter 2018, I will be shifting my focus more toward architecting and realizing this vision and rebalancing my operational responsibilities.

At the beginning of the year I warned that Vega would be hard. At the time, some folks didn’t believe me. Now many of you understand what I said. Vega was indeed hard on many, and my sincere heartfelt thanks to all of you who endured the Vega journey with me. Vega was personally hard on me as well and I used up a lot of family credits during this journey. I have decided to take a time-off in Q4 to spend time with my family. I have been contemplating this for a while now and there was never a good time to do this. Lisa and I agreed that Q4 is better than 2018, before the next wave of product excitement. Lisa will be acting as the leader of RTG during by absence. My sincere thanks to Lisa and rest of AET for supporting me in this decision and agreeing to take on additional workload during my absence.

I am looking to start my time-off on Sept 25th and return in December.

Thank you, all of you, for your unwavering focus, dedication and support over these past months, and for helping us to build something incredible. We are not done yet, and keep the momentum going!

Regards, Raja

Since his return to AMD in 2013 and the reformation of a monolithic graphics division with RTG in 2015, Raja has overseen and led all aspects of AMD graphics hardware and software. Raja’s public presence and involvement render him the face of graphics at AMD, in all senses of the word, from Capsaicin events to Twitter and Reddit. Following Vega’s launch, Raja had taken two weeks vacation to visit family, following visits to company sites in India.

Given the news in his letter, we hope all is well.

Source: PC Perspective

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  • JoeyJoJo123 - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    You can, but don't expect to have a job after 3 months. Extended leave like this is typically only available for people who are on the military reserve and leave to serve their country or may be on maternal leave (but I believe 3 months is a bit longer than most companies already allow). Reply
  • tarqsharq - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    Eh, you'd be surprised.

    My dad took a 6 month sabbatical from his job as the CEO of a telecomm company and they definitely still wanted him back afterwards.
    Reply
  • e36Jeff - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    I got 3 months(technically 12 weeks) paid at 100% for paternity leave, and I do live and work in the US. You just need to work for the right company. Reply
  • JoeyJoJo123 - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    The comment was meant moreso in the way of the average Joe's hourly wage as opposed to an in-office salary kind of job.

    I imagine the typical grocery store, restaurant, or gas station kinds of jobs to only offer the government mandated minimum for maternity/paternity leave.

    The better the job you have, the more benefits you'll have, the more likely you'll have more vacation/PTO, insurance options, 401k/retirement options, maternity leave, etc.
    Reply
  • Ian Cutress - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    Intel engineers get 6 months sabbatical for every 10 years of service. Reply
  • weilin - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    Intel's policy is 4 weeks after 4 years or 8 weeks after 7 years of service. Reply
  • FriendlyUser - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    8 weeks isn't a sabbatical, it's what I get every year. And I'm not a teacher... You really need more vacation in the US. Reply
  • SharpEars - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    Before everyone trashes AMD and the disaster (both performance wise and power/heat wise) that is Vega, please keep in mind that nVidia tesla will never come out without a company like AMD pushing nVidia. The same is true for next gen Intel CPUs. So, you can hate AMD for its products, its crappy drivers, buggy motherboard chipsets, whatever, but do love them for the fact that their CPUs and GPUs push other companies to go forward with hardware that you will actually buy. Think of AMD as a catalyst for Intel's and nVidia's future products. Reply
  • Sergio526 - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    Heck, that hasn't been more evident than this year! Just the rumblings of Vega got nVidia to release the 1080 Ti and pull the cover off of Volta. I wouldn't be surprised if, in a couple of months, they would've just slapped an 1180 sticker on 1080 Ti and push Volta off a while longer if it wasn't for Vega.

    Likewise, Ryzen and Threadripper got Intel moving faster than I've seen them move in years. So much so that they even stumbled a bit. I can almost guarantee that we would not have seen an 18 core enthusiast chip from them if it wasn't for TR. I also seriously wonder if six and eight core Coffee Lake chips would have been non-extreme (X) chips if it wasn't for Ryzen.

    Even the best, most beloved companies will sit on their hands and take things slow if there are no significant market pressures, there's just a tremendous cost savings doing so. I'm really looking forward to what Navi will push nVidia to do. Tiny, 7nm dies linked via infinity fabric will eliminate yield concerns and heat/power usage should drop like a rock (you don't need more than one of the, let's say, eight dies running to draw your desktop). nVidia is clearly the better GPU architect, even when not being pushed. Put AMD back nipping at their heels and we are going to see some amazing tech come out in the next five years!
    Reply
  • Dribble - Wednesday, September 13, 2017 - link

    It's been quite a while since Nvidia's release schedule was effected by AMD. They release a 25-30% faster part pretty well like clockwork whatever AMD do. I suspect someone in Nvidia has calculated that's the ideal jump to get people to upgrade while not being impossible to maintain, so as long as they keep doing that people keep buying new cards and Nvidia keeps making money. Reply

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