I have been wondering what name Radeon means. In 2002 issue of Maximum PC, nVidia's GeForce name was investigated and editor contacted nVidia staff. It was explained that GeForce means Geometric Force. The name was given due to the original GeForce card (256, I think) being their first card to support hardware accelerated Transform and Lighting, which is highly responsible for fast geometry rendering of objects.
I tried to investigate Radeon name a bit and some people on internet said it may be:
- Radon + Neon (chemical elements) (Can't remember, but maybe Radon is highly reactive so it may symbolize ATI's new highly reactive graphics cards and Neon meaning glow, so that it shows that quality)
- Radiation > Radion > Radeon (just ATi removed from Radiation, considering that in early 2000s scifi stuff like that was quite popular in naming schemes, why not?) (this name also has connections to chemical elements Radon, which is radioactive)
- Radeon was a planet name of of classic episode of Star Trek (I haven't seen it myself, so no comments) (People report this explanation being on Cebit by member acehardware)
- washing detergent Radion (can't imagine why would company name their cards after washing detergent)
- Chris Hook (I dunno, who he is. Maybe ATi staff) told press that new ATi cards originally were to be named "radium" but that also meant something unpleasant in east Asian tongue, so someone's mom came up with the idea to call it something similar and brought up "radeon" (needs confirmation from ATi, now known as Radeon Technologies Group)
- class of German U-boat (why?)
- radical neon (back then it would have sounded cool to have some radical neon in your PC)
So now I really wonder what Radeon name means, maybe it has similar roots to GeForce name and was named after once incredible technology that happened to be used until now. It would be really nice to know what Radeon means.