Thursday, June 4, 2015

Dave Thomas - Huge Memory

A few weeks ago I went to a YOW! Night event in Brisbane to listen to a talk by Dave Thomas. The talk was about a coming revolution in programming caused by computers with huge amounts of persistent memory.

Simply, the idea is to put chips that make our SSD drives into the system bus to give programs direct access to hundreds of gigabytes or terabytes of non-volatile memory. The SSD in DIMM hardware is already here. The software needs to catch up.

Why is this revolutionary? Because it will allow writing simpler, faster programs. With single thread, transactional use of massive amounts of persistent memory there will be no need for server farms for most applications. Replication will still be needed, in case the super-machine crashes, but other than that programs will be lean, simple, and fast.