Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

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Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Richard Neill
Dear All,

An interesting thought struck me today. For the last 8 years, I have
upgraded every 2 years, in order to (roughly) double the performance of
the computer. 2 years has now elapsed since my last upgrade, and it is
time for another one. Yet there isn't any compelling new product to buy!
I wonder why that is, and if anyone can explain it?

There's no obvious answer to this, either from intel,google or
wikipedia. Also, the quantum limit should allow a 10nm process. So, why
has Intel, in particular, stagnated?

A datapoint: 2 years ago, the top desktop CPU was a 3.0GHz/800MHz P4.
Now, the best available (at a sane price) is 3.6GHz. Similar things have
occurred for laptops [admittedly, there have been gains in efficiency
with the P4m, so the numbers are less meaningful] - and although my
4-year-old A22p (P3, 1GHz) could certainly use an upgrade, I wouldn't
call it obsolete. It should be, though!

Is it just economic (Intel having failed to market desktop Itania), or
is there any real physics behind it?

I hope this is an interesting enough subject to merit being a bit O.T.

Richard


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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Christopher Sawtell
On Tue, 06 Dec 2005 14:36, Richard Neill wrote:
> An interesting thought struck me today. For the last 8 years, I have
> upgraded every 2 years, in order to (roughly) double the performance of
> the computer. 2 years has now elapsed since my last upgrade, and it is
> time for another one. Yet there isn't any compelling new product to buy!
> I wonder why that is, and if anyone can explain it?

I recon they are all waiting to see what they have to provide for
Longhorn/Vista to work nicely.

Also for the average machine doing the average things on somebody's desk or
lap what we have at the moment is many times more powerful than that which
is actually necessary.

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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Daniel Pittman
In reply to this post by Richard Neill
Richard Neill <[hidden email]> writes:

> An interesting thought struck me today. For the last 8 years, I have
> upgraded every 2 years, in order to (roughly) double the performance of
> the computer. 2 years has now elapsed since my last upgrade, and it is
> time for another one. Yet there isn't any compelling new product to buy!
> I wonder why that is, and if anyone can explain it?
>
> There's no obvious answer to this, either from intel,google or
> wikipedia. Also, the quantum limit should allow a 10nm process. So, why
> has Intel, in particular, stagnated?

Three big problems, heat, radiative noise and quantum mechanics, have
gotten in the way of delivering faster systems, and on delivering things
like a 10nm process, if you look at the current moves by all the big
chip manufacturers.

Radiative noise is a special killer: it hits home on longer stretches
outside the CPU, like the memory bus, where speed improvements are
extremely hard to achieve because of cross-channel interference and RF
emission problems.

Modern CPUs have outpaced memory performance significantly, to the point
that cache miss time usually dominates the performance for most tasks,
and improving that is a much harder job, in some ways, than improving
CPU performance.

> A datapoint: 2 years ago, the top desktop CPU was a 3.0GHz/800MHz
> P4. Now, the best available (at a sane price) is 3.6GHz. Similar things
> have occurred for laptops [admittedly, there have been gains in
> efficiency with the P4m, so the numbers are less meaningful] - and
> although my 4-year-old A22p (P3, 1GHz) could certainly use an upgrade, I
> wouldn't call it obsolete. It should be, though!

While you vaguely acknowledged it here, most of the current chips
deliver significant performance improvements at equivalent clock speeds
to the previous generations.  

They also deliver those accompanied by significant gains in
functionality, power use and heat generation, all of which require
significant engineering effort that could, otherwise, be spent of
improving raw processing power.


Finally, as you note, for many uses the machine they have is sufficient
for their needs.  Lower demand there, coupled with higher demand for
portable computing power, refocuses the industry to where the real money
is. :)

        Daniel

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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

James Knott
In reply to this post by Richard Neill
You might start looking at the AMD 64 bit systems.


Richard Neill wrote:

> Dear All,
>
> An interesting thought struck me today. For the last 8 years, I have
> upgraded every 2 years, in order to (roughly) double the performance of
> the computer. 2 years has now elapsed since my last upgrade, and it is
> time for another one. Yet there isn't any compelling new product to buy!
> I wonder why that is, and if anyone can explain it?
>
> There's no obvious answer to this, either from intel,google or
> wikipedia. Also, the quantum limit should allow a 10nm process. So, why
> has Intel, in particular, stagnated?
>
> A datapoint: 2 years ago, the top desktop CPU was a 3.0GHz/800MHz P4.
> Now, the best available (at a sane price) is 3.6GHz. Similar things have
> occurred for laptops [admittedly, there have been gains in efficiency
> with the P4m, so the numbers are less meaningful] - and although my
> 4-year-old A22p (P3, 1GHz) could certainly use an upgrade, I wouldn't
> call it obsolete. It should be, though!
>
> Is it just economic (Intel having failed to market desktop Itania), or
> is there any real physics behind it?
>
> I hope this is an interesting enough subject to merit being a bit O.T.
>
> Richard
>
>

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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Alejandro Bonilla Beeche
In reply to this post by Richard Neill
On Tue, 06 Dec 2005 01:36:24 +0000, Richard Neill wrote
> Dear All,
>
> An interesting thought struck me today. For the last 8 years, I have
> upgraded every 2 years, in order to (roughly) double the performance
> of the computer. 2 years has now elapsed since my last upgrade, and
> it is time for another one. Yet there isn't any compelling new
> product to buy! I wonder why that is, and if anyone can explain it?

There are a lot of new technologies on their way...

1. Intel did not reach the 4GHZ cause they said it was useless, therefore,
they are now adding more memory to their cache and speeding the bus. See
400/533/800/1066 or so...

2. Intel is making CPU's differently depending on your system. They now want
to make some sort of flash memory to be in the system, in that case you would
install the OS in a "flash drive" and then it would boot like half the time it
normally takes.

3. I don't think EM64T or AMD64 is the answer to change to a 64bit CPU, but
other more broad and strong technologies, in this case the "flash drive", the
L2 cache, the Bus and any other crazy ideas are the ones to make our computing
lifes nicer. ;-)

4. Intel is coming out soon with "Yonah" which is the new CPU which will be
dual core (second generation of Yonah) then the system will have HD audio,
SATA2 maybe. I also heard it might have a technology where the keyboard would
light up if a sensor notices that you are in a dark room, I think the CPU
comes with 800 FSB and like 4 or 2 MB Cache. ;-) Plus some new technology in
the battery.

Who knows? Just give Intel/AMD some time with the OEM's and they will surely
release something crazy for all of us. ;-)

 .Alejandro



>
> There's no obvious answer to this, either from intel,google or
> wikipedia. Also, the quantum limit should allow a 10nm process. So,
>  why has Intel, in particular, stagnated?
>
> A datapoint: 2 years ago, the top desktop CPU was a 3.0GHz/800MHz
> P4. Now, the best available (at a sane price) is 3.6GHz. Similar
> things have occurred for laptops [admittedly, there have been gains
> in efficiency with the P4m, so the numbers are less meaningful] -
>  and although my 4-year-old A22p (P3, 1GHz) could certainly use an
> upgrade, I wouldn't call it obsolete. It should be, though!
>
> Is it just economic (Intel having failed to market desktop Itania),
>  or is there any real physics behind it?
>
> I hope this is an interesting enough subject to merit being a bit O.T.
>
> Richard
>
> --
> The linux-thinkpad mailing list home page is at:
> http://mailman.linux-thinkpad.org/mailman/listinfo/linux-thinkpad


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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Paul RIVIER
first I agree that cpu frequency raising is a commercial issue.
Power consumption and efficiency have been improved in the last
few years.

>
>2. Intel is making CPU's differently depending on your system. They now want
>to make some sort of flash memory to be in the system, in that case you would
>install the OS in a "flash drive" and then it would boot like half the time it
>normally takes.
>  
>
I would like to start looking at this flashdrives, would you have a link
to give me, where to find such devices at low price ? Actually, it would
probably
speedup a system much more than anything else today. And without fan noise,
that is cool :)

paul
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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Macskasi Csaba
>> 2. Intel is making CPU's differently depending on your system. They now  
>> want
>> to make some sort of flash memory to be in the system, in that case you  
>> would
>> install the OS in a "flash drive" and then it would boot like half the  
>> time it
>> normally takes.
>>
I don't get it. The lifetime of souch a drive would be very short. Just  
imagine that there is 24/7 writing (logs etc.) on a flash drive.

Regards,
Csaba

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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Michael Gaber
In reply to this post by Paul RIVIER
still cooler:
hitachi is working on some sort of crystalline-storage, which could be
addressed directly over fiberchannel light.
so there would be no fan, no spin-up/down, and access-times we all dream
about


Paul RIVIER wrote:

> first I agree that cpu frequency raising is a commercial issue.
> Power consumption and efficiency have been improved in the last
> few years.
>
>>
>> 2. Intel is making CPU's differently depending on your system. They
>> now want
>> to make some sort of flash memory to be in the system, in that case
>> you would
>> install the OS in a "flash drive" and then it would boot like half the
>> time it
>> normally takes.
>>  
>>
> I would like to start looking at this flashdrives, would you have a link
> to give me, where to find such devices at low price ? Actually, it would
> probably
> speedup a system much more than anything else today. And without fan noise,
> that is cool :)
>
> paul


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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Yury Polyanskiy-2
still cooler:

www.nantero.com -- NRAM, they promise non-volatile RAM (nano-based of
course) with speeds up to a several hundreds of gigahertz, density
higher than DRAM and could be integrated into a current CMOS fabrication
process.

Most exciting is that they expect to be ready NEXT YEAR. This is going
to change the philosophy of system design (as CPU now will be the
bottleneck of a system).

YP.


On Wed, 2005-12-07 at 20:59 +0100, Michael Gaber wrote:

> still cooler:
> hitachi is working on some sort of crystalline-storage, which could be
> addressed directly over fiberchannel light.
> so there would be no fan, no spin-up/down, and access-times we all dream
> about
>
>
> Paul RIVIER wrote:
> > first I agree that cpu frequency raising is a commercial issue.
> > Power consumption and efficiency have been improved in the last
> > few years.
> >
> >>
> >> 2. Intel is making CPU's differently depending on your system. They
> >> now want
> >> to make some sort of flash memory to be in the system, in that case
> >> you would
> >> install the OS in a "flash drive" and then it would boot like half the
> >> time it
> >> normally takes.
> >>  
> >>
> > I would like to start looking at this flashdrives, would you have a link
> > to give me, where to find such devices at low price ? Actually, it would
> > probably
> > speedup a system much more than anything else today. And without fan noise,
> > that is cool :)
> >
> > paul
>
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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

perley
In reply to this post by Richard Neill
That's why on linux the logs go to a different partition (/var).  The OS can be on read-only media, whether by protection or physical limitation.

---- Macskassy Csaba <[hidden email]> wrote:

> >> 2. Intel is making CPU's differently depending on your system. They now  
> >> want
> >> to make some sort of flash memory to be in the system, in that case you  
> >> would
> >> install the OS in a "flash drive" and then it would boot like half the  
> >> time it
> >> normally takes.
> >>
> I don't get it. The lifetime of souch a drive would be very short. Just  
> imagine that there is 24/7 writing (logs etc.) on a flash drive.
>
> Regards,
> Csaba
>
> --
> Macskasi Csaba
> [hidden email]
> http://tuxworld.homelinux.org:81/
> --
> The linux-thinkpad mailing list home page is at:
> http://mailman.linux-thinkpad.org/mailman/listinfo/linux-thinkpad

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Re: Slightly OT: where are the 10GHz P6 thinkpads?

Brad Langhorst
In reply to this post by Macskasi Csaba
On Wed, 2005-12-07 at 20:56 +0100, Macskassy Csaba wrote:

> I don't get it. The lifetime of souch a drive would be very short. Just  
> imagine that there is 24/7 writing (logs etc.) on a flash drive.

You have to use them differently...
data and frequent writes go to some other medium (hard disk)
but library reads etc. come from the flash.

Boots are fast since they're reading from the flash (mostly)
I'm considering such a system for my laptop - boot from a 4G read-only
flash disk (except for upgrades)

This could be done with links (eg /usr/ and /lib) to the flash drive.

I'm not sure if the PCMCIA bandwidth will ruin this plan...

Brad



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