|MadSci Network: Computer Science|
I have a degree in Systems Engineering, but haven't done any VLSI stuff for a couple of years. I was wondering how "fast" a conventional desktop computer (such as would appear on the average office desk) will eventually run - is there a limit. I know that increasing the processing performance can be achieved by increasing the CPU's clock speed, adding on-chip cache, speeding up the bus to the system memory, increasing the amount of system memory, moving to RISC, adding pipelining, doing speculative branch execution, introducing a SIMD architecture etc., and what I really want to know is just how much faster our PCs (etc.) will get - is the limit to how fast a computer can go ultimately dictated by the frequency of the signals used in the system - presumably regular PCB tracks have a frequency response that has a cut-off point at a high frequency. What technologies exist or are in development to address such issues. I have read in the past that room-temperature superconductors could herald a new phase in computing - how does such a technology help? Are there any quentum effects that may ultimately limit the speed of computers? Finally, what tasks could such super-fast computers be used for by the regular person? Cheers Chris
Re: How fast will conventional desktop computers eventually go?
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