As Moore’s law sunset approaches, centers look for new ways to bolster computers
Hood River, OR -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/23/2013 -- The unveiling at the University of Michigan of its $28 million, five-year research center underscores the schools effort to plan for the computers of the future.
The Center of Future Architectures Research opens today and has involved 14 other major research institutions. C-FAR aims to harness both the power and momentum of reliable interest in the future of tiny transistors that will emerge over the next 10 years.
Transistors are the building block of many of the modern electronics. Currently, more than a billion of them are used to help compose the integrated circuit that is found in todays cell phones and personal computers. C-FAR is to start the support design for the next generation of such computers and gadgets, that will enable applications functionality. Such applications will be computer vision, speech recognition, higher levels of graphic capability, and “big data” analysis.
C-FAR is not alone in its venture, as there are five other centers announced by the Semiconductor Research Corporation. C-FAR will work with the other research projects, all of whom are charged with guiding the society throughout the autumn years of Moore's law. The law assumes that the industry will be able to shrink transistors enough to double the number that fit in an integrated circuit every 18 months. However, the law has its limitations and the average electronic mechanism is now running up to that limit.
"It's a challenging time as we approach the end of Moore's law – not tomorrow, but soon," said Todd Austin, professor of electrical engineering and computer science and C-FAR director. "The dimensions of the transistors of today are in the tens of atoms. We can still make them smaller, but not without challenges that threaten the progress of the computing industry."
Valeria Bertacco, an associate professor at U-M stated the reason for trying to find new avenues for the tiny transistor advancements: “The Industry is adding more and more cores. Last year, your cell phone had two, next year it will have four. The problem is your cell phone doesn't do much more than it did before because harnessing all those cores is a challenge,"
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