Sun is trying to replace the wires between computer chips with laser beams to eliminating a bottleneck. For decades, the semiconductor industry has broken silicon wafers into smaller chips to improve manufacturing yields. From the article:
Sun Microsystems is trying to do for computing what all the kingâ€™s horses and men failed to do for Humpty Dumpty. For decades, the semiconductor industry has broken silicon wafers into smaller chips to improve manufacturing yields.
Now Sun has found a way to reconnect the chips so they can communicate with each other at such high speeds that computer designers can build a new generation of computers that are faster, more energy-efficient and more compact.
The computer maker, which is based in Santa Clara, Calif., plans to announce on Monday that it has received a $44 million contract from the Pentagon to explore the high-risk idea of replacing the wires between computer chips with laser beams.
I’m not an expert in electricity or electronics but on paper a laser should move as fast as energy. I really hope this will to improve speed :) Each chip would be able to communicate directly with every other chip via a beam of laser that could carry billions of bits of data a second.