Re: [asa] LHC, TOE, and the limits of knowledge

From: Rich Blinne <>
Date: Tue Sep 16 2008 - 15:19:29 EDT

There's also such a scaling in solid state non-volatile storage. What's
interesting is regardless of the new exotic technologies in this space flash
memories just gets better and better. (Disclaimer: this is the area I am
currently working in and I may be biased.) At some point, though there is
going to be a wall and normal CMOS, flash memories, and magnetic disks will
run out of steam. I am actually amazed that we have been able to keep this
run going for so long. You are seeing the signs that the end is near (on the
decadal time scale). We are fighting leakage current and power is getting to
be a big problem. There is a reason the clock speeds have stalled and we
have gone to multi-core processor designs and that is power. The big
processor farms spend more on air conditioning than the price of the
computers and disks. As seen in the whole multi-core approach we have to go
to different architectures and not just hop on the next technology node and
crank the clock speed.
Another interesting technology in the nanotechnology space is nanoscale
antennas tuned to the infrared. This extends solar technology into the
mornings and evenings. While I am on the topic of nanotechnology my "big"
prediction for the 21st Century is moving from the physics to the biological
model. That is, we stop "printing" circuits ala physics and use the regular
assembly found in biology.

On Tue, Sep 16, 2008 at 12:02 PM, Randy Isaac <>wrote:

> Those of us who have grown up with the electronics industry have
> practically come to believe that the scaling law is a universal entitlement;
> we merely wait for the right invention. In fact, the transistor and the
> magnetic storage cell are two rather unique examples with surprisingly few
> additional examples. Does anyone know of another? Will there be unforeseen
> inventions which will trigger new ways of doing things. Absolutely. Can we
> predict what they will be? No. But we can have some guesses. Getting a
> tabletop TEV accelerator is not one where I would recommend putting all your
> life's savings. Maybe not even a dime of it. At least until Burgy has his
> rocket that will take us to Betelgeuse and back in one lifetime.
> Randy
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "j burg" <>
> To: "Dehler, Bernie" <>
> Cc: "asa" <>
> Sent: Tuesday, September 16, 2008 11:52 AM
> Subject: Re: [asa] LHC, TOE, and the limits of knowledge
> >
>>> Just like computers were made of vacuum tubes and people thought that was
>>> the future- more and more of them, in bigger and bigger rooms. Then the
>>> transistor was invented and re-shaped everything. The first computer
>>> chip
>>> had a few transistors, but now there's billions in there (up to 2 billion
>>> now).
>>> Just like the physics of 1954 (or so) in which it could be shown w/o
>> any doubt that a chemical rocket could never get to the moon.
>> Then Arthur Clarke suggested a multistage design ... .
>> Burgy
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Received on Tue Sep 16 15:20:36 2008

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