Intel, intent on world domination, said it has created a working prototype of the next generation of super-dense processors. Perhaps that phrase in the headline above about curing all known diseases, a shameless attempt to attract your attention, was an exaggeration on the part of your humble narrator. Anyway, this new manufacturing process creates chips whose components are just 45nm (nanometer = one-billionth of a meter) apart. That's a lot more dense than the current state-of-the-art PC processors, which at 65nm will be the maximum component width with which most of Intel's PC chips will be built by the third quarter of this year.
Who really cares about all this dorky shit? Well, we do, because when chip components are closer together they run much faster and cooler, and use a lot less power. So, more than a billion transistors can be fit onto a chip that s the same size as today's processors (Moore's Law lives!), or better yet, chips can be smaller and fit into even tinier devices, and be quieter and less battery-hogging. It's all good. Expect to see these new gee-whiz processors rolling out sometime in the second half of 2007. Meanwhile, by then you can expect AMD to leap even further ahead of Intel, maybe even making steady progress on that curing all known diseases thing.