There are very few constants in this world. Some say the only guarantees are death and taxes – and it's hard to argue. But Moore's Law, which observed that the number of transistors within a dense integrated circuit doubles every two years, has been a mainstay in the IT industry ever since the 1970s.
Like death and taxes, Moore's Law was something that shaped our lives. We could depend on the rapid advancement of technology and even plan for it – up until recently. Given significant technological advancements, including magnetic storage, manufacturers are interesting in shattering Moore's Law and achieving even greater system speeds and efficiency than ever imagined.
'''Is Moore's Law Already Dead?'''
According to some, Moore's Law is already dead. On one hand, manufacturers have reduced the size of transistors and chips to near-microscopic levels. It's difficult to cram even more hardware into such small sizes. The experts with Intel have already forecasted the end of this physical shrinkage, and it's coming in just a few short years.
The end of Moore's Law certainly doesn't prevent technology from advancing further, but it might slow it down. Some experts already insist that IT is in currently experiencing developmental stagnation.
On the other hand, there's no reason why modern manufacturers and developers have to abide by Moore's Law at all. Thanks to innovations like magnetic storage, we might be able to outpace Moore's Law in the future.
Magnetic Storage to the Rescue
It might sound like something out of the latest sci-fi flick or comic book, but magnetic storage is a very real method of storing data in the 21st century. Although it's currently in the earliest stages of development, magnetic storage shows the potential to store massive amounts of data within smaller and streamlined hardware.
Don't confuse this with traditional, disk-based storage. While current hard drives do use magnetized particles to store data on the internal disk platters, the new system of magnetic storage – pioneered by researchers at MIT – utilizes virtualized particles to detect tiny disturbances in magnetic orientation.
Named "skyrmions" by the research team, these variations are detected across a thin metallic film that is contained between films of different metal. The result is a device that is easily controllable via electric fields and, in turn, a device that is capable of storing data without the need for continuous or additional power.
For now, the biggest roadblock comes when trying to read back the stored data. The only way to retrieve data stored in this method is through a highly sophisticated – and expensive – X-ray spectrograph. The development team is currently working on a solution to make this new form of storage a viable method for handling the vast amounts of data that is now being generated on a daily basis.
'''The Future of Moore's Law'''
Coined by Gordon Moore, co-founder of Intel and Fairchild Semiconductor, Moore's Law has been a mainstay of the IT industry for decades. Often quoted, inserted into jokes and used to highlight the rapid advance of technology, the popular saying might soon be outpaced by the very subject matter it mentions – but it might not survive much longer either way.
How Magnetic Storage is Threatening Moore's Law
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