Intel chip manufacturing trends
Once again, Intel Corp. is ready to release a new line of microchips, and everyone is rightly bamboozled by them. This chart was taken from The Wall Street Journal (Nov 7, 2007), and is interesting for the trend it shows. It would appear that in very late 2008 or early 2009, on this curve, we should see a 30 nanometer chip with just over a billion transistors on it. The key to this is switching the underlying materials used in the manufacturing process. Silicon dioxide as been used since the 1960s, but now a material called hafnium will be used, since it is much more stable as regards temperature fluctuations which occur as such small scales.