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December 2000


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"Thomas W. Perrin" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
A LISTSERV list for discussions pertaining to New York State history." <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 11 Dec 2000 14:33:11 -0500
text/plain (50 lines)
Some technological advances in today's news: on the horizon: faster
clock speeds, and faster disk drives.
With IBM currently marketing a 380mb 66mhz computer the size of a
postage stamp for $1500, (and that's technology they announced a year
ago!) what will we see in five years? Can an alternative to the CD be
far behind?

By Tom Jacobs
 Monday, December 11, 2000

 Chip giants IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) both
 announced breakthrough chip technologies. IBM has started
 using a new manufacturing technology, while Intel
 promises transistors as small as three atoms thick, making
 chips almost seven times faster than its recently released
 Pentium 4.

 IBM's new manufacturing technique, named CMOS-9S,
 showcases advances in copper wiring, silicon-on-insulator
 transistors, and better insulation so that chip circuits can
 be as small as 0.13 microns -- 800 times thinner than a
 human hair. IBM is making a variety of chips with this
 technique, and customers should receive their first
 shipments in early 2001.

 But Intel now plans the world's smallest and fastest CMOS
 transistor. At 30 nanometers thick, the Santa Clara
 gorilla could fit 400 million of them on a chip, which is just
 shy of 10 times the number on a Pentium 4. Intel says that
 it will be possible to build chips by 2005 that run 10 billion
 operations a second, compared to the Pentium 4's 1.5 billion
 a second. Dr. Sunlin Chu, vice president and general
 manager of Intel's Technology and Manufacturing Group,
 said that new processors using the transistors not only
 would be smaller and faster, but use less power. He said,
 "It's one thing to achieve a great technological
 breakthrough. It's another to have one that is practical
 and will change everyone's lives. With Intel's 30 nanometer
 transistor, we have both."

 While industry observers believe that this advance
 approaches the limit on thickness, Jim Hardy, an analyst at
 Dataquest, says that "This is proving there's no reason the
 normal growth of the semiconductor industry can't continue
 on for probably another 10 years." If so, that's good news
 for Intel investors, who have endured recent Intel revenue
 warnings and stock price cliff-drops. Fools recently
 dueled over its future.