Gordon E. Moore was the co-founder of Intel and Fairchild Semiconductor who wrote a paper 50 years ago that predicted a doubling of the number of components per integrated circuit every year. 10 years later, in 1975, he revised the forecast to every 2 years… and his prediction has been largely accurate. It’s now known as Moore’s Law.
To provide an example, the Apple Watch (which I happily own and highly recommend) has the processing power of about 2 iPhone 4 smartphones. It far outperforms the 1985 Cray-2 supercomputer… on your wrist. That’s quite the feat given the footprint of the entire device and I have a hard time thinking even Gordon Moore thought we’d be where we’re at today.
Computer chips continued to increase performance while decreasing in size, allowing for innovations that engineers never thought possible. 40 years ago, most people wouldn’t believe that we would soon have access to limitless information from the palm of your hand.
What does this mean for marketers? IMO, it means we’re at the very early stages of what can be accomplished with cross-channel marketing optimization and marketing forecasting. Modern analytics platforms are pretty rudimentary – capturing tons of data and providing simple reporting. Big data systems are advancing to drive innovation in the marketing industry to advance reporting systems into predictive engines – which will improve both user experience and marketing results.
Processing power is critical because the tools for developing on these limitless platforms become easier and easier to make. One example, or course, are big data database engines. By developing self-optimizing data and query engines, companies can push development resources to building new features – not tuning and tweaking databases to run more effectively. These are exciting times!