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Showing posts from June, 2013

Moore, Amdahl, Malthus and the vanishing "middle" of everything

Understanding Moore's law is essential for those who live and work with High Tech and information economy - that includes pretty much all of us who are reading this. Moore's observation was that the cost of the same amount of commodity building blocks of electronics (transistors) halves every 18 months or so. Put it another way, if bread or vegetables were like transistors, the same amount of nutritious food will become 50% cheaper every 18 months.
This has been true for over 50 years. Roughly, that is. It means that, for example, your computer will get about 100 times beefier every 10 years.
That is very nice for those who need the technology. 
Amdahl's law is equally powerful and limits the reach of Moore's law. Amdahl's law says that there is a limit to how fast you can make things work, even if Moore's law makes them infinitely faster in short order.
Although things can get cheaper, the amount of real usefulness is limited by the amount of things you cannot…