You've probably read about the HP Labs research project called "The Machine"—which HP says will use "electrons for computation, photons for communication, and ions for storage." This is one of those things that we hear about every so often that seems really cool, but always leaves me scratching my head about how it will affect our little corner of the IT world. (I can think about "our little corner" both in terms of enterprise end user computing as well as enterprise IT in general.)
So I wonder... let's imagine that this thing exists and we suddenly have a 1000x leap in terms of computing power, storage, and memory for the same size and power of today's devices. Given that, what's the impact to enterprise IT? (In other words, I don't want to talk about whether this thing will actually exist, rather, let's imagine that we suddenly have 1000x the power. What does that mean for us? What do we do with it?)
I guess that rather than renting little virtual servers from cloud providers, we'll all run the equivalent of an entire cloud datacenter in our own server rooms (or potentially on our own personal devices). That's cool and all, but so what? I guess we'd still have to have all the connectivity to be able to get them to do anything more useful than they already do today.
When it comes to desktop virtualization, that's all about Windows, so what would Windows even do with 1000x the power? Sure, all my users have VMs that boot instantly and always run at full speed, but now what? The first thing we'd need is to really dial-in our management and automation systems. (If you thought "VM sprawl" was a problem before, imagine what it would be like when firing up a new VM as powerful as any server in your own environment only costs a few tenths of a penny per month?)
I could envision that new types of apps might be created in a world where memory and persistent storage are essentially one-in-the-same (and unlimited), but we'll still have the same challenges we have today since most of the big enterprise apps are so engrained into the roots of a company that it would take years or decades to rewrite them. I wonder if that's something that 1000x the power could do? Some kind of really incredible app transformation? Then again, are today's app transformation products hamstrung my a lack of MIPS? I would think not.
I'm curious as to whether anyone has any thoughts on this? If we had 1000x the computing power in our datacenters for the same costs of operation today, how would that change your world?