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Computer Processing Speed

processing chip

Publish Date




19 May 2020




The processing speed of a computer is usually determined by how fast it can process data. Colocation America states that the first computer processor had a processing speed of 740kHz and was able to process 92,000 instructions per second. The processing speed of chips has roughly doubled every two years since then for over 50 years. A trend known as Moore’s Law. As MIT Technology Review puts it:

Moore’s Law is named after Intel co-founder Gordon Moore. He observed in 1965 that transistors were shrinking so fast that every year twice as many could fit onto a chip, and in 1975 adjusted the pace to a doubling every two years.

Game improvement cloud beacon computer processing speed

Unfortunately, you can only make a transistor so small before the laws of physics puts a halt to things. This is the situation we are arriving at now. We are reaching the point at which a single computer processing transistor is measured in number of atoms. Once we have achieved a chip that features transistors as small as an individual atom we will not be able to scale down any further.

Scaling down transistors is currently the main method of increasing the speed at which a computer can operate. Having more transistors on a chip means being able to complete more processes simultaneously.

We must find a new method of improving computing power that doesn’t rely on increasing the number of transistors.

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    Reason to Address

    Computer processing speed has been a fundamental driving force of our technological development. It has allowed us to advance our digital capabilities in ways that would seem like impossible science fiction to those living only half a century ago. We are able to communicate instantly, immerse ourselves in lifelike virtual worlds and simulate ever more complex physics problems. Technology will stagnate without the exponential improvement in chip speed we have become accustomed to. Human evolution is no longer just a biological phenomena but a technological one too. Moore’s Law needs to remain true for things like Automation and Artificial Intelligence to happen. Who knows what else could be possible in the future if we were to somehow continue exponentially improving chip speed.



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