Recent Posts

Friday, January 14, 2011

The End Of Silicon Chips

Ahhh silicon chips. Is there nothing you can't do?
Apparently so. For one they can't defeat the laws of quantum physics. So it turns out that after 40 years of using silicon chips scientist are pretty close to their physical limits.
For the uninitiated silicon transistors act as gates on a processor (yes that tiny little "brain" in your computer). These gates allow for complex algorithms based on true/fase (boolean logic) which in turn allow other components on your computer to react to nothing more than 0's and 1's, which then turn it all into,images etc... Pretty amazing stuff!  The idea is that the smaller you make these gates the more complex you can make your algorithms which allows for more 1's and 0's to be processed and computed on faster.
The problem now is that silicon ships are rapidly reaching their limits on size. Which means we're gonna hit a plataeu soon which won't allow us to make CPU's any faster.  Scientists are currently researching a number of materials to replace the now aging silicon chips. My personal fave is carbon nano tubes. Their small, can take a charge and are one of the strongest nano structures available today. People are already working on using this technology to replace suspension bridge cables, build flexible screens and in a literal reach for the stars, some are proposing a non tube express elevator into orbit.
All in all I can't wait to see what the future holds and be more amazed than I already am at the amazing accomplishments of computer science.
Hit the link if you wanna read a longer more thorough explanation by someone much smarter than I.


No comments:

Post a Comment