Intel says in order to increase the performance of desktop software, developers should start following Moore's Law. Shekhar Borkar from Intel says the performance of a chip doubles every 18 months to two years. He added that it would be a good idea for software developers to double the amount of parallelism their software can support every two year.
But it's a big challenge for the industry. Things are better on the server side, where machines are handling multiple simultaneous workloads. Desktop applications can learn some from the way supercomputers and servers have handled things, but another principle, Amdahl's Law, holds that there is only so much parallelism that programs can incorporate before they hit some inherently serial task.
Speaking to a small group of reporters on Friday, Borkar said that there are other options. Applications can handle multiple distinct tasks, and systems can run multiple applications. Programs and systems can also both speculate on what tasks a user might want and use processor performance that way. But what won't work is for the industry to just keep going with business as usual.
Microsoft has recently been sounding a similar warning. At last week's Windows Hardware Engineering Conference in Los Angeles, Chief Research and Strategy Officer Craig Mundie tried to spur the industry to start addressing the issue.