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Andrew Huang argues that Moore's Law is slowing and will someday stop but the death of Moore's Law will spur innovation. "Someday in the foreseeable future, you will not be able to buy a better computer next year," writes Huang. "Under such a regime, you’ll probably want to purchase things that are more nicely made to begin with. The idea of an “heirloom laptop” may sound preposterous today, but someday we may perceive our computers as cherished and useful looms to hand down to our children, much as some people today regard wristwatches or antique furniture."
Vaclav Smil writes about "Moore's Curse" and argues that there is a dark side to the revolution in electronics for it has had the unintended effect of raising expectations for technical progress. "We are assured that rapid progress will soon bring self-driving electric cars, hypersonic airplanes, individually tailored cancer cures, and instant three-dimensional printing of hearts and kidneys. We are even told it will pave the world’s transition from fossil fuels to renewable energies," writes Smil. "But the doubling time for transistor density is no guide to technical progress generally. Modern life depends on many processes that improve rather slowly, not least the production of food and energy and the transportation of people and goods."
Finally Cyrus Mody writes that it seems clear that Moore’s Law is not a law of nature in any commonly accepted sense but what kind of thing is Moore’s Law? "Moore’s Law is a human construct. As with legislation, though, most of us have little and only indirect say in its construction," writes Mody. "Everyone, both the producers and consumers of microelectronics, takes steps needed to maintain Moore’s Law, yet everyone’s experience is that they are subject to it.""
> The military hardly uses plutonium
Wut? That's practically all they use.
In weapons yes, however all military reactors use highly enriched uranium (sub reactors even use super-grade uranium which has higher U-235 concentration than what is typically used in weapons)
> current price to last several hundred years
At the currently tiny fraction of worldwide production. If you are arguing for some sort of fission economy, then there's not nearly enough of the stuff.
If there is a fission economy than new sources will be found and developed. Then there are breeder reactors, thorium, sea water extraction, and ultimately the rest of the solar system. People always seem to compare what Solar will be in 10 years to what nuclear was 30 years ago. Or can we abandon Solar because if we go "full solar" we'll run out of Indium or Lithium
> and it'd take so long to build that it'd never be economical.
It doesn't make a difference, the non-nuclear side is already too expensive to build:
Oh, no... someone wrote a blog. His argument assumes that the ITER approach is the only one that will work and that costs will never come down, he also assumes that if Fusion were perfected and became widespread we somehow couldn't build additional fission reactors, or build specialized fusion reactors to produce tritium (I guess we've lost the ability to build CANDU reactors), Darlington itself has been approved to build 2-4 new reactors if required. Plus we don't know if Pollywell fusion will pan out, or if Lockheed Martin will somehow live up to their claims. However it's perfectly fine for Solar advocates to assume that breakthroughs in battery technology will solve all of its issues