View Full Version : Inferior Technology
05-19-2005, 05:55 PM
One thing I've been wondering for years is: If [many of the types of] flash memory is so much more energy-efficient and faster than hard disk technology, why do handheld electronics designs keep drifting toward hdd instead of flash/solid-state??
The entire situation is counter-intuitive to me. This also applies to computers in general; they would be multiplied in their abilities if their ultimate bottleneck, the hard disk, would be replace by flash memory. I've always wanted to make a computer with an 8 - 12GB flash disk for the OS (w/ appropriate bus).
05-20-2005, 12:33 PM
Look at the difference between CF cards and CF microdrives! It would be possible technologically, but impossible because of the huge price!
05-20-2005, 01:48 PM
Flash also wears out *much* faster.
A typical life is 100,000 write cycles.
If you put your Windows swap-file on a CF card, it would die within a month!
A hard disk OTOH can be written to so many times it's practically infinite!
The biggest factor *is* cost 'tho. A hard drive is what, £1/gig? Flash is more like £50 a gig :p
Tangent: You can buy multi-gigabyte 'RAM drives' that connect to IDE/SCSI ports, but these use SDRAM with a hard disk bolted on so that when it gets powered down, everything is dumped onto the HD. Cool, but veeeery expensive. See, even 'tho SDRAM is a lot cheaper than Flash, it's still a lot more expensive than a hard disk, so you can imagine what a multi-gig Flash device would cost!
Another Tangent: There *is* an adaptor that lets you connect CF cards directly to an IDE bus (I read about it on Dan's Data (http://www.dansdata.com), so if we start seeing multi-gigabyte CF cards, you could have your wish! :D
Just make sure you don't put anything that needs to be written repeatedly on it if you ever do...! :eek:
Flash RAM is crap anyway. I really want them to make a break-through with M-RAM or some other more elegant solution (Maybe holo-cube/wafer matrixes...?).
Then again I hate CDs and DVDs (So crude! And why the hell do people opposed cartridges so much? No one complains about the PSP UMDs being encased, but I post one comment that Bluray/HD-DVD should come in a protective case and everyone says no! Why?!)
05-20-2005, 05:47 PM
(So crude! And why the hell do people opposed cartridges so much? No one complains about the PSP UMDs being encased, but I post one comment that Bluray/HD-DVD should come in a protective case and everyone says no! Why?!)
Because Blu-ray is a disc. I believe that cartridges are fine, but only for carts and not for discs.
I didn't know that about Flash memory wear, though. The price is something I don't care about -- taking your £50/GB example, my 8GB flash wonderdrive would run only £400: a price I would be willing to pay. I suppose my revolution requires work on the price and wear, then! If I was smart enough in this stuff, I would get some effing patents.
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