Computers Will Stop Getting Faster —in 75 Years

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 10, 2009 12:17 PM CDT
Moore's Law will cease to apply in about 75 years, say two scientists.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, file)

(Newser) – Even Moore's Law has its limit. That's the much-cited dictum from Intel co-founder Gordon Moore that computer speed doubles every two years with ever-smaller and more powerful transistors. Two physicists crunched some numbers and found that the theory—which has held true for 40 years now—must eventually reach a "quantum limit," notes LiveScience. Their estimate? Give it another 75 to 80 years.

"No system can overcome that limit," says one of the Boston University physicists. "It doesn't depend on the physical nature of the system or how it's implemented, what algorithm you use for computation ... any choice of hardware and software. This bound poses an absolute law of nature, just like the speed of light." (Read more Moore's Law stories.)