65nm chip manufacturing

The next step in the development of microprocessors is the roll-out of the 65nm manufacturing process, which appears to be successful:

Intel Pentium Extreme Edition 955 & 975X Express Chipset: 65nm is Here

There is a fascinating graph in the article showing the trendline from 0.8um in 1990 to 0.65nm today. Obviously we will reach a "minimum feature size" for silicon at some point, so it will be fascinating to see what the next step is for Intel when we reach that point. But we still have a ways to go.

It is also interesting that power consumption is down rather than up in these new chips.

When I do public speaking on these topics, a comment I hear almost every time is, "well, your Robot predictions will not come true because computers are not going to get much faster than they are today. Moore's law is dead." It is not clear to me where this thinking comes from. Moore's law has been in place for perhaps 60 years. We have moved from relays to vacuum tubes to transistors to chips in that time. Something else will come along when silicon reaches its natural limits (carbon nanotubes, quantum computing or something). Or we will figure out a way to do 3-D silicon. Or we will come up with a new computing paradigm that does not depend on every single transistor and wire working. The human brain has billions of cells and uses only 20 watts or so, so we have a working technology right there as an example of how far things can go.

Even more interesting is the algorithm and programming side. The new Xbox 360 has 6 cores, but most games use only one of them because we haven't yet figured out how to write highly multi-threaded game code. We still don't have a good general approach to computer vision. As soon as we do, we will see vision cards proliferate just as we have with graphics cards. Once we figure these things out, it may change the course of hardware design.

Happy New Year Marshall!

Thank you for your great web-site and your humanitarianism. Would that there was a "Moore's Law" for human dignity.
The reason people think Moore's Law is dead, is because they're looking at gigahertz, not transister count. They are surprised that we're going into parallelism now.
Well, at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Intel will show off their take on an Intel future in home entertainment devices. They are rebranding their Pentium line also, to "Core". They will soon show off their Core Duo (dual processor) and Core Solo (one processor) chips which will possibly be in a brand new line-up of Mac computers. It...is...going...to...be...awesome! Blaaaah!!!! I'm freaking out!
I wonder when nanotube scale memory chips will actually see production? From the news, it sounds like it might happen this year sometime (maybe late '06).
Hi Dude,

I don't go to electronics online stores to get reviews on electronics online i think they are not that fair, i visit blogs like yours to get customers reviews. I like it better. I think it is less deformated
Also i go to electronics online ..good mine of fresh electronics products info.

Hi Marshall.

Your Blog is great! There is just a little correction to do. The graph shows the trendline going from 0.80um to 65nm or, if you prefer, from 0.80um to 0.065um.

Ari Silva
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