April 15th, 2002 09:55 PM
Say goodbye to rebooting?(new technology)
Bye-Bye Rebooting? Researchers Work to Upgrade Computer Memory;
University of Houston, Sharp Laboratories of America to Develop
Computer Memory Technology
Publication date: 04/11/2002
HOUSTON, April 11 (AScribe Newswire) -- A new high-speed, high-capacity computer memory
technology could make rebooting your computer a thing of the past, and may allow PC users to transfer and download large files - such as digital movies - in a few seconds, rather than hours.
Researchers at the University of Houston developed and patented the memory technology, and today announced that Sharp Corp. has exclusively licensed the technology. UH researchers are working with Sharp's subsidiary, Sharp Laboratories of America in Camas, Wash., to develop commercial applications.
"With current computers, if you turn the power off and then turn it back on, you lose whatever
you haven't saved, and you have to reboot, or restart, your system from the beginning," says
Alex Ignatiev, director of the Texas Center for Superconductivity and Advanced Materials at the University of Houston and one of the developers of the new technology. "Our type of memory is nonvolatile, which means if you turn the power off, everything is still there. You turn your computer back on and it's right where you left off."
The UH researchers have fabricated and tested individual thin film memory elements made of a material called perovskite. The elements can be electrically programmed to change their
resistance, becoming more or less resistive to the passage of electricity. Ignatiev says a commercial memory product using this material would incorporate many thousands or millions of such elements arranged in an array resulting in a resistive memory chip, which would be made to be compatible with current PCs.
This new resistive memory technology may be the next generation of mainstream computer
memory, says Victor Hsu, director of the integrated circuits process technology laboratory at
Sharp Laboratories of America.
"Once integrated into a computer, this type of memory could be ideal for multimedia and
broadband applications, allowing PC users to download information from the Internet at very
high speeds, and allowing much faster processing of high-volume information such as video and graphics," Hsu says.
"We believe once it is fully developed into a commercial chip it will be less expensive than current memory technology." Ignatiev presented information about the technology in November 2001 in San Diego at the 2nd International Nonvolatile Memory Conference. He will present the latest developments of the Sharp Labs collaboration at the International Joint Conference on the Applications of Ferroelectrics 2002, to be held May 28-June 1 in Japan.
Current PCs have two basic kinds of memory. Random access memory, or RAM, is the active
memory, controlled by computer chips, that allows users to run programs, open files and process data, but it does not save information if power is turned off. Mass memory storage, such as the hard drive, permanently stores files and data but operates slowly. Ignatiev says the new resistive random access memory technology could theoretically replace both kinds of memory.
"This resistive memory is a constant, permanent memory, but it's fluid as well, capable of rapidly storing information of any kind in a nonvolatile way," he says. "And it's all electronic, with no mechanical parts such as those used in hard drives to read and store data."
In developing the technology, Ignatiev and his UH colleagues Shangquing Liu and Naijuan Wu
worked with very thin films of perovskite oxides called manganites. When these thin films are
exposed to electrical pulses their resistive properties can be rapidly changed, becoming more or less resistive to the passage of electricity. In other words, their resistance can be programmed, Ignatiev says.
The UH researchers capitalized on the perovskite's unique resistive properties and developed an electrical switching process so that the material could be used to store and retrieve bits of
information. The UH research initially was funded by NASA and by the State of Texas through the Texas Center for Superconductivity and Advanced Materials, a NASA Commercial Space Center at the University of Houston. The project now is supported by Sharp Laboratories of America.
Sounds interesting, what do you think?
Mankind have a great aversion to intellectual labor; but even supposing knowledge to be easily attainable, more people would be content to be ignorant than would take even a little trouble to acquire it.
- Samuel Johnson
April 15th, 2002 10:19 PM
That sounds very cool... But i'm a bit skeptical about the "say goodbye to rebooting your computer" part. That won't happen, if ppl still use windows.
April 15th, 2002 10:22 PM
Hm.. Quite interesting, Id love to never have to reboot agian.. Such a hasstle!
What Would Jesus Do (For a klondike Bar?)
April 15th, 2002 10:24 PM
The problem with no rebooting is that you have things that could live in memory forever. If they ever implement this, I WANT a system which WILL reboot just like they do today, but doesn't NEED to be. In other words, I want to be able to reinitialize everything in case I get a persistent bug or memory-present virus, etc. Making computers which never rebooted and 'cleaned house' would be terrible.
[HvC]Terr: L33T Technical Proficiency
April 15th, 2002 10:35 PM
there are programs... for windows that will allow you to clear your mem... anyways... : "Our type of memory is nonvolatile, which means if you turn the power off, everything is still there. You turn your computer back on and it's right where you left off."
If you are running Windows and you get that unending blue screen of death... those who use windows know what I'm talking about... the one that WONT go away.... well how will you ever get out of that 'confliction' if its always in memory and reastarting will only bring you back to the problem and not solve... aviod (Win cant be fixed by human means... napalm might work though)
just a thought
April 15th, 2002 10:38 PM
Originally posted here by Terr
The problem with no rebooting is that you have things that could live in memory forever.
I've stumbled across a nice little tweak at TweakXP that removes .dll's from memory once a program has closed. Here's a small "c & p" from the tweak page-
Windows Explorer caches DLLs (Dynamic-Link Libraries) in memory for a period of time after the application using them has been closed. This can be an inefficient use of memory.
Here's how it's done-
1. Find the key [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer].
2. Create a new DWORD sub-key named 'AlwaysUnloadDLL' and set the default value to equal '1' to disable Windows caching the DLL in memory.
3. Restart Windows for the change to take effect.
I tried this after running a intense program, then watched the task manager; memory recovered it self.
As I said, this twaek comes from TweakXP. Check it out...it's full of brilliant stuff such as this...
April 15th, 2002 10:40 PM
Hmmm, They should make a program that reboots a Windows system every half-hour.. That should help everyone
I use Windows 2000 Proffesional Server with a huge uptime (about 2 months).... My secret is applying a few 'custom' patches