#455 April 11, 2016 – Moore’s Law Marches On!

This week’s headline story: Moore’s Law Marches On!

Gordon Moore
Gordon Moore

Chip manufacturers have been challenged to keep up with Moore’s Law, which predicts that processors will double in transistor numbers and speed every two years.
Research has shown that the limits of silicon are tapped out, and creating smaller and smaller transistors has become impossible. So, the industry has moved to other materials and tricks.

Now a key tool the tech industry hopes will allow Moore’s Law to march ever onward—one that private companies, academia, and governments around the world have invested billions of dollars and decades developing—is finally being tested in factories operated by Samsung, Intel, and other companies. This technology is called extreme-ultraviolet (EUV) lithography, and industry leaders say it could be used in high-volume chip manufacturing as early as 2018.

Lithography works somewhat like old-fashioned film photography: light is projected through a patterned mask onto a surface coated with light-sensitive chemicals called photoresists. The smaller the wavelength of light, the higher resolution patterns it’s possible to make. The industry has pushed the existing technology, which uses light that’s 193 nanometers in wavelength, to its limits. the shorter wavelength of EUV light will allow more detail in chip lithography creating smaller transistors in much less time.

In other news:

  • Google To Test Self-Driving Cars in Phoeniz Area [NewsFactor]
    A fleet of self-driving trucks rumbles across Europe [Computerworld]
    Self-driving cars and trucks are spreading across national and international highways. Google is testing its Self-driving cars in Chandler AZ to see how they perform in extreme heat. Meanwhile in Europe, the European Truck Platooning Challenge is taking place, where semi-trucks race across the European continent in a driverless convoy, saving fuel and streamlining product distribution.
  • Why Rwanda Is Going to Get the World’s First Network of Delivery Drones [MIT]
    A startup called Zipline will use a fleet of long-distance drones to airdrop precious blood and medicines to remote medical facilities across Rwanda. The potentially life-saving project hints at the potential for unmanned aerial vehicles to revolutionize the delivery of some goods. But it also highlights the fact that drone delivery currently makes most sense only in extreme situations.

in Information Security News…

  • Russia, China Are Greatest Cyberthreats, But Iran Is Growing [NewsFactor]
    Russia and China present the greatest cyber security threat to the U.S., but Iran is trying to increase and spend more on its capabilities, Adm. Michael Rogers of the military’s Cyber Command told Congress. While the U.S. has more overall military power than the three countries, the gaps are narrower when it comes to cyber warfare.

and in Tech Industry news…

  • HP Unveils Spectre: ‘World’s Thinnest Laptop’ [NewsFactor]
    HP has unveiled the world’s thinnest laptop, the Spectre. The device, made its debut at the New York Times’ International Luxury Conference, features a glossy copper finish, jewelry-like hinge design and 13.3-inch edge-to-edge display, the Spectre will be available for pre-order starting April 25 starting at $1.169.99.

 

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