Computing Predictions – Update 05/04/04

I maintain a spreadsheet of predictions based on Moore’s laws and the trends I see in computing technologies. Today I reviewed my predictions and made necessary adjustments:

  1. Increased hard drive capacity from 0.40 to .50 by 07/01/04
  2. Decreased CPU speed from .0060 to .0040 by 07/01/04

Hard drive capacity is growing faster than I expected. So far, there is no word yet on when the first terabyte memory systems will reach commercial production, so I stick with my original prediction of an introduction early in 2006. CPU speeds are not increasing as quickly as I expected, but their complexity and density increases still follow Moore’s Law (speed is not considered a good indicator of a CPU’s abilities but has been an easy way to market advancement to consumers). With AMD’s Athlon64 doing extremely well and new technologies expected to hit Intel’s chipsets this summer, the recent perceived plateau in computing should come to a quick end.

I have not officially changed my predictions of expected highlights although I am very tempted to do so. Machine/Brain interfaces may come much sooner than I originally predicted, but there is an apparent lull in AI advancement.

In the technology cycle we are currently in a period of commercialization and normalization of existing technologies. Behind the scenes, research and development of advanced technologies continues as always and I expect 2006 to be an important commercialization year, much more so than even 2004 is shaping up to be. By 2006, terabyte memory systems should start revolutionizing how we use our computers, the Grid and the Mesh will both make important progress, and momentum will continue building for the second Internet revolution I see shaping up by the end of the decade.


Hard Drive


Terabyte Memory




Nano CPU




01/01/03 0.20 TB 0 0.0030 THz 64-bit 0 Graphical, Voice
07/01/04 0.50 0 0.0040 0 Graphical, Voice Multi-gigabyte versions of terabyte memory systems released
01/01/06 1.00 5 TB 0.0080 0 Voice, Graphical Terabyte memory system replaces today’s memory subsystems
07/01/07 2.00 10 0.0160 0 Voice, Graphical, Gesture, Haptic
01/01/09 4.00 20 0.0320 0 Voice, Graphical, Gesture, Haptic GRID and Mesh, computer size down to deck of cards
07/01/10 8.00 40 0.0640 0 Voice, Graphical, Gesture, Haptic, 3-D
01/01/12 16.00 80 0.1280 1 THZ 3-D, Voice, Gesture, Haptic Nano computers released, size shrinks from deck of cards to microscopic over next decade, AI entities emerge
07/01/13 32.00 160 0.2560 2 3-D, Voice, Gesture, Haptic
01/01/15 64.00 320 0.5120 4 3-D, Voice, Gesture, Haptic, AI AI/human general contact, AI-generated data feeds for humans
07/01/16 128.00 640 1.0240 8 AI, 3-D, Voice, Gesture, Haptic Optical Nano and/or quantum computers released
01/01/18 256.00 1,280 PB 2.0480 16 AI, 3-D, Voice, Gesture, Haptic, Brain interface “Downhandling” of data to human brain, embedded microscopic super computers
07/01/19 512.00 2,560 4.0960 32 AI, 3-D, Voice, Gesture, Haptic, Brain interface AI/Brain interfaces replace all other interfaces (the rest become virtual interfaces used as necessary)
01/01/21 1024.00 5,120 8.1920 64 AI/Brain interface AI/Brain interface bottleneck recognized, medical approaches and body enhancement attempted
07/01/22 2048.00 PB 10,240 16.3840 128 AI/Brain interface Commercial nano asssemblers
01/01/24 4096.00 20,480 32.7680 256
07/01/25 8192.00 40,960 65.5360 512
01/01/27 16384.00 81,920 131.0720 1,024 PHz
07/01/28 32768.00 163,840 262.1440 2,048
01/01/30 65536.00 327,680 524.2880 4,096
07/01/31 131072.00 655,360 1048.5760 PHz 8,192
01/01/33 262144.00 1,310,720 2097.1520 16,384 Singularity
07/01/34 524288.00 2,621,440 4194.3040 32,768
01/01/36 1048576.00 5,242,880 8388.6080 65,536
07/01/37 2097152.00 10,485,760 16777.2160 131,072

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Richard Leis

Richard Leis is a fiction writer and poet, with his first published poem forthcoming later in 2017 from Impossible Archetype. His essays about fairy tales and technology have been published on Tiny Donkey. Richard is also the Downlink Lead for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) team at the University of Arizona. He monitors images of the Martian surface taken by the HiRISE camera located on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter in orbit around Mars and helps ensure they process successfully and are validated for quick release to the science community and public. Once upon a time, Richard wrote and edited the science and technology news and commentary website Frontier Channel, hosted the RADIO Frontier Channel podcast, and organized transhumanist clubs. Follow Richard on his website (, on Goodreads (richardleis), his (@richardleis), Twitter (@richardleisjr), and Facebook (richardleisjr).