Moore's Law, Hope, and Threats

You've probably heard about the exciting / scary rate at which computing power is changing over time. Moore's law predicts computing power to double every 18 months.

The exciting part:

The speed at which things are improving, means that you triple, and in some instances quadruple your productivity just by constantly adopting new features of the software you use (which are sometimes a reflection of the increase in computing power).

Example: Google AdWords launched a new interface, with a bunch of new features. Some of the most important of these features involves providing a flexible reporting interface for your keywords, ad groups, and campaigns. The result is that you can answer a question about your campaigns with one click. Previously you needed to create a special report, wait for it to get ready, export it to Excel, and then do your analysis. This used to take 4-5 minutes. When you have five or six questions, that might mean 15 minutes. May times you don't have that time to fulfil your curiosity. Now you do. And because you do, that means you are much more in touch with your account performance, and can quickly respond.

This is the typical thing that happens with new technological breakthroughs. You get much more productive and effective, using much less time and resources.

If you are the type that loves to learn and adapt quickly, this is great news for you.

The scary part is for big companies and teams who assume that if it takes X hours per week to achieve task Y, it will continue forever. Things get much worse for these people if they are not the learning type. The way they cope with more clients and work is "expansion". Hire more people, make it more complex, and suffer in the process.

In summary, scalability is now built in in anything we do, because as the technology we are using improves performance and adds new features, so does our ability to do more work in less time.