An Exploration of Hardware and what it Portends for Open Source Software



From the early PC to today's laptop we have a million times the memory, a million times the disk storage, and similar increases in processing capabilities. What problems/opportunities does another million fold increase in raw computing bring?


First, a quick review of hardware (past, present, and future) with a focus on performance and the “software domain” running on the hardware. This is concluded with a free-for-all discussion of current and near future review of hardware (USB 3.0, PCI-e 3.0, SSD, PCM SSD, CPU/GPU technology, virtualization, cloud computing, etc.). A discussion follows on the “Open Hardware Initiative”, “virtual hardware”, and hardware ownership. Concluding will be a discussion concerning the nature of the effect of current and future computing capabilities on the f/oss community.

Speaking experience


  • Biography

    My computer experience started around 1969, in the “electro-mechanical” era of computers. My first programming language was assembly followed closely by Fortran. I have been an IT director, technical support manager, systems architect, network designer, software developer, programmer, systems administrator, computer journalist, hardware technician, and (mis)managed my own company since 1984. I have worked with the largest and smallest of computers and have dealt with practically every piece of hardware that could be associated with computing. In the past several years my focus has been exclusively on employing Open Source solutions to build effective systems for businesses and communities.

    Outside of computing I have interests in horses, wine, food, music, film, friends, flying, and anything that has to do with design.