It’s the end of SSDs as we know it, and I feel fine

Last Updated on August 6, 2013 by Dave Farquhar

Flash memory’s days may be numbered. The end of the line for traditional flash memory has been predicted for a long time, and gloated about by Luddites who are dead-set against buying SSDs for whatever reason. But I’m not worried about it. All I want is solid-state storage; I don’t care about the underlying technology. The technology behind the RAM my computer uses has changed several times since the early 1980s, and I’m not broken up about it–the SSD in the last computer I built is faster than the RAM in my Commodore 64 was. Speed is good. More speed is better.

So I’m glad to hear about a potential breakthrough in RRAM.

Picture 20 times the speed, seven times the endurance, and a terabyte of storage on a single chip, at a cost starting at about $1 per gigabyte. That price will come down as technology improves and quantities increase, of course. But enterprises will love it. A 20x performance increase will make databases sing along very happily, and smart enterprises won’t mind paying a premium to get better speed and reliability.

I haven’t been able to kill a post-2010 SSD yet, so the fear and loathing about SSDs is overstated–as long as you buy a reputable brand, at least–but I’m not married to it. I’ll gladly set aside my current SSDs when a newer, better technology becomes affordable.

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