IBM Spends $3 Billion in Finding New Ways to Power Future Generation of Processors
Gabriel Roşu / 4 years ago
It seems like the age of silicon will not last as long as we would expect. That is at least what IBM is thinking, having the company spending a great sum on money in developing new ways of powering up future generations of processors.
IBM officials say that the company already has 22 nm chips in use and are not likely to change on something else right away. However, their statement points to the fact that the current technology gets tricky when processors will get even smaller, to about 7 nm as stated.
This is why the company’s first step has been to invest $3 billion / £1.75 billion in funding research into ways of making the small chip components work without silicon. This is why IBM has high hopes for carbon nanotubes, although there is a lot of work and effort to be put in researching ways to make carbon nanotube-powered processors as easily and quickly as silicon processors are made nowadays.
Another alternative in mind seems to be silicon nanophotonics. This is a way of using light instead of electrical signals in order to send data around the chip. Besides the latter, IBM is said to also have invested into new ways of developing quantum computing, namely Neurosynaptic chips, looking to go beyond the digital computing pattern used for over fifty years.
Not all processor manufacturers see eye to eye though. Intel is said to follow Moore’s Law and increase its processor production rates, while Microsoft looks like it sees eye to eye with IBM when it comes to the company’s search engine, Bing. This is why Microsoft has started to use custom chips for its search engine, in hopes it will improve its reliability, speed and make the search engine perform faster and better than its rival, Google.
Whatever the verdict may be in the future, it is clear that technology as we know it will change and evolve into something greater than it is today. What that evolution will bring us is something we all have to just see for ourselves when the time is right.