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Less Is Moore 342

Hugh Pickens writes "For years, the computer industry has made steady progress by following Moore's law, derived from an observation made in 1965 by Gordon Moore that the amount of computing power available at a particular price doubles every 18 months. The Economist reports however that in the midst of a recession, many companies would now prefer that computers get cheaper rather than more powerful, or by applying the flip side of Moore's law, do the same for less. A good example of this is virtualisation: using software to divide up a single server computer so that it can do the work of several, and is cheaper to run. Another example of 'good enough' computing is supplying 'software as a service,' via the Web, as done by Salesforce.com, NetSuite and Google, sacrificing the bells and whistles that are offered by conventional software that hardly anyone uses anyway. Even Microsoft is jumping on the bandwagon: the next version of Windows is intended to do the same as the last version, Vista, but to run faster and use fewer resources. If so, it will be the first version of Windows that makes computers run faster than the previous version. That could be bad news for computer-makers, since users will be less inclined to upgrade — only proving that Moore's law has not been repealed, but that more people are taking the dividend it provides in cash, rather than processor cycles."

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