How Moore's law stabbed us in the back

Gordon Mohr gojomo@usa.net
Tue, 1 Jan 2002 19:40:18 -0800


Adam Beberg writes:
> Demand stopped. People have all they can use. No new killer apps in sight.
> You know it, I know it. Moore knows it too.  

But Mohr don't know it -- because it's not true.

The "dearth of killer apps" is an illusion created by the macroeconomic 
business cycle. Right now, people aren't throwing around disposable 
income and portfolio wealth -- and the "hot new thing" media outlets are 
all hurting. So there's no hype and rush to market -- even with great
things in the wings, simmering behindthe scenes. 

> So that new PC you're drooling over might be $700 w/17" monitor included.
> And this is going to half every 18 months or so. Soon the PC will come in
> the cereal box, and they will be a choking hazard to boot!

I know, it's awesome, isn't it? 

> Now, if what your selling is going down in price, your supplies better be
> dropping to. Since the only variable cost in the tech industry (moore
> controls the cost of atoms) is human labor... guess what.

The same prediction has been made about every labor-saving and 
productivity-enhancing innovation of the past 300 years. And
every time, while the mixture of professions has changed, the
prediction has been wrong. Real wages keep going up. 

Your negativism isn't just wrong, Adam, it is trivially and tiredly 
wrong. A proper crank should at least have some fresh data or insight
to drive their naysaying.

- Gordon