The Moore’s Law Or Why Your Computer Is Slow

One day I had a lovely conversation with my friend:

– Oh my goodness, why this piece of iron and plastic is so slow?? – she was talking about her laptop.

– How old is it?

– 4 and something years. – She replied.

– And you seriously expect it to be that fast as in the first day? It’s kind of impossible, your computer is 8 times weaker/slower than it used to be.

– But it didn’t change.

– Yes, but the world changed :D.

Let me explain what I mean. There is a guy who’s name is Gordon Moore, famous by his Moore’s Law, and back in the days he said that computer processing power will be doubled every 18 months. You would say: “who the hell is Gordon Moore and why should I believe him?”. He is the co-founder of Intel, the biggest manufacturer of processors nowadays. I guess he knows what he is talking about. And actually until now this law has been working.

So if we buy the computer at year 0 it’s computing power = 1, by the year 3 or 36 month the computing power of new devices is 4 and your computer is still at 1. In year and half the power of new machines is 8 and again, your buddy just 1.

So back to the story with my friend now we can understand that her computer was designed to work with the software that is 8 times slower than the software on computers produced this year. So if you have never updated your operating system (Windows or MacOS) or programs installed on your computer (browser, video/music players and so on) you should be OK. And your computer will be working fine. But if you at least did something from the above or installed the latest version of Photoshop or any other software – your computer will complain. He will try to do his best job, but he actually wasn’t designed to do that. There is a good analogy with power-lifting actually. Imagine that you can lift 100 kg. You do that and you are awesome. Then you don’t do a shit, you skip training sessions and 4,5 years later you are trying to lift 800 kg. This is actually what you are asking to do your computer. He doesn’t deserve such a bad treatment :(.

The Moore’s law has been working for around 50 years (since 1965), but recent studies have some evidence that it is dying as it becomes more difficult to put more transistors on a smaller area (the more transistors you have the faster CPU computes). So maybe computers bought in 2018 will last longer without losing it’s efficiency. But no one really knows yet.

The graph below shows the historical path of computers and we can clearly see the linear regression on that plot about which I wrote in one of my previous articles.

I hope it was useful information and you will become more patient to your computer and will give him some love :D.

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