October 24, 2010

WAS MOORE’S LAW INEVITABLE? “They could not believe their eyes. The curve said they could have machines that attained orbital speed… within four years. And they could get their payload right out of Earth’s immediate gravity well just a little later. They could have satellites almost at once, the curve insinuated, and if they wished — if they wanted to spend the money, and do the research and the engineering — they could go to the Moon quite soon after that. . . . It is important to remember that in 1953 none of the technology for these futuristic journeys existed. No one knew how to do go that fast and survive. Even the most optimistic die-hard visionaries did not expect a lunar landing any sooner than the proverbial ‘Year 2000.’ The only voice telling them they could do it was a curve on a piece of paper. But the curve was right. Just not politically correct. In 1957 the USSR launched Sputnik, right on schedule. Then US rockets zipped to the Moon 12 years later.”

UPDATE: Reader Eric Schubert writes:

You see the parallel between the conclusion in the hyperlinked paper about the power of self-organization and the acceleration of change in transportation, and the current situation with the self-organizing Tea Party movement and the acceleration of political change, don’t you? Can we call it “Santelli’s Law?”

What a fascinating observation. Someone should really write a book on this phenomenon. And they should definitely make it available on Kindle!

ANOTHER UPDATE: Yeah, the link’s not working now. I don’t know why — it was fine when I posted this morning.

MORE: Reader Geoff Mayer sends this link to the cached version.

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