The death of the little 8 bitters was announced several years ago, yet they still appear to be quite live with ever expanding capability. Guess they never saw their obit, much like Mark Twains quote on the exaggeration of the rumors of his death! As far as making life easier for engineers and programmers however I will disagree. The reason is with every expansion of technology comes ever more complex solutions, and with it, ever more headaches to the designer. Think autonomous cars for example, then the redundancy that must be built into them. Engineering was never easy and will not be easy in the future. In the 60s we used two transistors to make one flip flop, thus 36 bit registers took a lot of parts. Sixty-four k "core" stacks were huge and expensive, but today I whine about having "only" 16GB in my machine.
Will 32 bit machines be replaced by 64 bit? How about 128 bit guys with far more and faster registers? What are the practical limits to bus width? ASCII is still 8 bits wide.
I have been reading a lot on load sharing processor arrays lately. Sort of like multitasking in hardware. I'm not quite ready to send my 8 bit stuff to the Smithsonian quite yet. We always live in an age of discovery and I'm very happy to be alive today.
Hi, naperlou. Right you are. And the 32-bit devices have more types of communication peripherals, too--CAN, Ethernet, USB, SPI. I2C, etc., so chip creators have moved even more hardware onto silicon. That effort makes life easier for engineers and programmers.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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