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A Plasmonic Revolution for Computer Chips?

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the oooh-lookit-move-around-all-squishy-like dept.

Technology 188

Roland Piquepaille writes "Today, we're using basically two ways to move data in our computers: transistors carry small amounts of data and are extremely small, while fiber optic cables can carry huge amounts of data, but are much bigger in size. Now, imagine a single technology combining the advantages of photonics and electronics. This Stanford University report says a new technology can do it: plasmonics. (For more about plasmons, read this Wikipedia article.) Theoretically, it is possible to design plasmonic components with the same materials used today by chipmakers, but with frequencies 100,000 times greater than the ones of current microprocessors. There is still a challenge to solve before getting plasmonic chips. Today, plasmons can only travel a few millimeters before dying, while today's chips are typically about a centimeter across. Read this overview for more details and references about plasmonics, and to discover why it's one possible future for chips' circuitry."

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188 comments

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Not a plasmonic mirror (0, Redundant)

winkydink (650484) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138352)

But a mirror for links:

Roland Piquepaille [networkmirror.com] writes "Today, we're using basically two ways to move data in our computers: transistors carry small amounts of data and are extremely small, while fiber optic cables can carry huge amounts of data, but are much bigger in size. Now, imagine a single technology combining the advantages of photonics and electronics. This Stanford University report [networkmirror.com] says a new technology can do it: plasmonics. (For more about plasmons, read this Wikipedia article [networkmirror.com] .) Theoretically, it is possible to design plasmonic components with the same materials used today by chipmakers, but with frequencies 100,000 times greater than the ones of current microprocessors. There is still a challenge to solve before getting plasmonic chips. Today, plasmons can only travel a few millimeters before dying, while today's chips are typically about a centimeter across. Read this overview [networkmirror.com] for more details and references about plasmonics, and to discover why it's one possible future for chips' circuitry."

Re:Not a plasmonic mirror (2, Interesting)

iamzack (830561) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138591)

If the frequency is 100,000 times that of current CPUs, the chip could be more simplistic because it could process more instructions per second.

I don't know how much fat you'd have to trim to get it down to a "few millimeters." So a few could be 3 or 4 milimeters which would be .3 or .4 centimeters, so 30 to 40% the size of today's current CPUs, operating at 100,000 times the frequency. I suppose you could even do the dual core thing and have 60-80% of the size of a normal CPU. OR....

While an all-plasmonic chip might be feasible someday, Brongersma expects that in the near term, plasmonic wires will act as high-traffic freeways on chips with otherwise conventional electronics.

That sounds more feasible than building an entire chip in this fashion. Just plug it in where you need it.

My money is still on carbon nanotubes, though.

Re:Not a plasmonic mirror (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138653)

You people are hypocrites, you complain about Roland copying other people's work, then you go and copy his. If you don't want to support Roland don't click his link, period.

Re:Not a plasmonic mirror (1)

winkydink (650484) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138796)

You people? What "people" are you referring to?

Chip design. (-1, Troll)

Opportunist Troll (873090) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138357)

A FAT COCK IN YOUR ARSE

Alright (5, Interesting)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138371)

Lets keep it simple, put all of the Roland Piquepaille [thedarkcitadel.com] conspiracy posts here. :)

Editors: GIVE HIM HIS OWN DAMN SECTION SO CAN HIDE HIS POSTS

Re:Alright (0, Offtopic)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138425)

Why would we hide his posts? They're interesting, and cost me the same to read as any other (non-reg) Slashdot linked stories: nothing. That said, I would like a feature that lets us block stories by submitter on our own Slashdot pages.

It's a desceptive practice (1, Offtopic)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138586)

Why would we hide his posts?

Because, the articles come from Roland as if he was just another Slashdot user, which then gives more credibility to the submission [1].

In reality, it's quite clear that there is some sort of business connection between Roland and Slashdot. There is no other reason to accept 100% of Roland's submissions.

It's a desceptive relationship.

[1] Except that the credibility is undermined by the constant complaining of the Slashdot readers.

Re:It's a desceptive practice (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12139040)

There is no other reason to accept 100% of Roland's submissions.

Where did you get this statistic?

Re:Alright (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138434)

It's not that we need a "Roland Piquepaille" section; it's that we need the ability to filter stories by submitter.

Piquepaille... (1)

stud9920 (236753) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138457)

...more like Pisspie am I rite

Re:Alright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138466)

Why create a new section? This one [slashdot.org] will do just fine.

To see the Roland Piquepaille problem (2, Insightful)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138500)

If you're wondering why all this fuss about the Roland Piquepaille problem, check out the rpiquepa's Recently Accepted Submissions [slashdot.org] .

6 articles were submitted in the last month, NONE were rejected. If there were any Rejected articles, they would be displayed under a "Recent Submissions" section.

What are the chances that the Slashdot editors accept 100% of Roland's submissions, when they reject the majority of submissions from other people.

When was the last time YOU had a story accepted by the Slashdot crew?

Re:To see the Roland Piquepaille problem (5, Informative)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138610)

6 articles were submitted in the last month, NONE were rejected. If there were any Rejected articles, they would be displayed under a "Recent Submissions" section.

Not true. You only see your own rejected submissions. Other people can only see your accepted submissions.

Re:To see the Roland Piquepaille problem (0, Offtopic)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138730)

I stand corrected. Thank you for the clarification.

CmdrTaco's response to Roland controversy (-1, Troll)

bonch (38532) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138683)

For the record, I e-mailed CmdrTaco a while back on this. He dismissed it and said Roland's articles get accepted because he must be writing good submissions, and that the editors don't look at the name of the submitter when accepting stories. He said the conspiracy theories and complaints are a "new successful troll meme."

It's rather hard to ignore the evidence though. As you said, all six articles last month were accepted. That's 100%. I bet there is no other user on Slashdot with 100% accepted stories an entire month. Only Roland.

Re:CmdrTaco's response to Roland controversy (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138706)

"Wiki is silly. Not scalalble." - CmdrTaco on IRC, June 2003.

So, did he really misspell 'scalable'? The ironing is delicious.

Re:CmdrTaco's response to Roland controversy (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138725)

Here's the IRC log:
http://www.slashnet.org/forums/Slashdot-20030612.h tml [slashnet.org]

Re:CmdrTaco's response to Roland controversy (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138795)

I like how that typo is followed by:

" Wiki's make me want to guage my eyes out." :)

Re:CmdrTaco's response to Roland controversy (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138805)


He obviously never heard the old saying, "Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought of as a complete asshole, then open it a remove all doubt." What an ass.

Re:CmdrTaco's response to Roland controversy (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138838)

Man, what an ass.
<Questions> reefer asks: Is there any system in place or a plan on developing some system to prevent duplicate posts?
<CmdrTaco> Whatever.
Next.

...

<Questions> OcelotLM asks: Have you considered changing the Games colour scheme to something less garish?
<hemos> Hahahaha
<CmdrTaco> Whateever.
Next.
Although this gave me a good laugh:
<CmdrTaco> Paging Dr Octagon.

Re:To see the Roland Piquepaille problem (1, Offtopic)

Dhalka226 (559740) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138687)

What are the chances that the Slashdot editors accept 100% of Roland's submissions, when they reject the majority of submissions from other people.

Who cares?

The real question is whether or not the articles he submits are worth the time of Slashdotters to read and reply to them. I'm not entirely sure what the conspiracy theory is--that he has some arrangement with the editors to accept the stories is one thing I've heard--but I frankly don't care WHO submits a story or WHERE they link it to as long as it is worth reading.

Now, whether or not they are indeed worth reading is up for debate, but that criticism would at least be on the right track.

That's not the issue (0, Troll)

bonch (38532) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138930)

The issue isn't the worth of the articles posted. They are usually good articles. The issue is that a disproportionate number of Roland's submissions get posted compared to other users, and those submissions usually contain links to his blog which links to the original article, instead of just linking to the original article. Roland makes money off of his blog for adviews, so the controversy is that Slashdot accepts most of his submissions and drives traffic to his blog.

I understand that some readers don't care about this "controversy." Some of us just don't like the rampant commercialism that's crept into Slashdot, and there's no other way to speak out on it (CmdrTaco dismisses it).

Your sig (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138703)

The right to die is a personal choice, not a place for Republican grandstanding.

How do you know she wanted to die? Oh, you took the husband's word for it even though a court said there was a dispute. "My wife said she wanted to die!" is good enough documentation for you. Fuck the family's wishes.

You know, there were plenty of liberals and Democrats who didn't want the tube removed either, like Jesse Jackson. But hey, Republican-bashing is totally okay on Slashdot. Liberal-bashing gets you modded down, every time.

At least Republicans showed up for the vote. Your beloved Democrats didn't even appear. Cowards.

Re:Your sig (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138980)

Oh, you took the husband's word for it even though a court said there was a dispute.

There are always disputes. The courts sided with Terry Schiavo's husband in numerous court cases for 15 years, and each time they agreed with him.

The dispute was brought forth by Terry's parents, who do NOT have the same legal rights as a Husband. Terry's parents did not want their daughter to die, and that is understandable. However, an individual's rights are more important then the feeling of the parents.

However, they do NOT have the right to prolong Terry's suffering when it goes against her known wishes.

Re:To see the Roland Piquepaille problem (1, Informative)

goaty_the_flying_sho (861224) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138953)

Hey, hey! Let's not go to far as to include all slashdot editors! timothy is the only one who gets paid by roland, and is the only one who posts these articles.

Re:Alright (0, Offtopic)

CSMastermind (847625) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138519)

In the mean time we can spread the word about what he's doing, not visit his site (I blocked it at our school) and say, "Thank you for the information, it's neat now I'm going to google the topic and find out about it".

Re:Alright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138557)

You blocked access to his site at your school? That's just silly, you should work for the Chinese government, you would fit right in. Let people make their own decisions, I choose not to click on his articles, but I don't impose my view upon anyone else.

Re:Alright (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138785)

Blocking many people's access to a web-site based on your personal opinion is censorship and is, in my opinion, a bad idea. You can educate people about what he is doing and your opinion about it, but removing other people's freedom of access to information is unethical.

Re:Alright (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138543)

Request a 'filter story by submitter' feature here [sourceforge.net] .

Re:Alright (4, Funny)

Stalyn (662) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138594)

i'll take Roland Piquepaille over Jon Katz any day.

Timothy lurves Roland (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138661)

Roland and Timothy

Sitting in a tree

Kay Eye Ess Ess Eye En Gee

Re:Alright (-1, Offtopic)

Cyno (85911) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138950)

Slashdot
News for nerds who frequent Roland Piquepaille's blog.

The future is now. (5, Interesting)

Sheetrock (152993) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138372)

Not only for plasmonics, but for mutable instruction sets. There has been a tendency in computing innovation to withdraw to yesterday's discoveries. Tried-and-true approaches offer the twin comforts of backwards compatibility and tested reliability, attractive propositions to the modern CEO or venture capitalist savvy enough to recognize the additional benefit of recognizing further gains on already completed research. Unfortunately, and in my opinion, this follow-the-leader approach has lead to stagnation in CPU development. I'll explain using a simplified analogy for the benefit of the less technically-inclined.

Let us think of a computer processing unit as a juggler, and bytes as mangoes. Older CPUs would juggle one mango at a time, and frequently require modifications to the stage to boot. Around the 1980s, they could juggle two mangoes. Then four around 1990, and today as many as eight at a time! Now you would be expected to be quite impressed with each leap, notwithstanding the fact that you really wanted a juggler that could handle melons, grapefruit, or watermelon slices instead of (or in addition to) mangoes. In addition, the fact that you are juggling in a zoo where a primate is free to grab your fruit and substitute twigs (or worse!) mid-juggle owing to something called "stack smashing" in computer terminology is not supposed to discourage you.

There is a movement towards something called mutable paragraphs, where as in English "words" (groups of bytes) can be of different lengths depending on need. This may mean the ability to exactly fill out a data page for better efficiency, or to allow the CPU to work with communication protocols in their element (if a common network packet is 68 bytes long, a word should be ½NP or 34 bytes in the I/O buffer.) It also means that you use no more CPU space than you absolutely need to for a computational step, decreasing wear and tear on your components.

I guess what I'm getting at is that science fiction has nothing on practical interative design for real world technological improvement. Sure, we might get to the same place we read about 50 years ago, but not all in one step.

Re:The future is now. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138426)

+5 You Made All That Shit Up Didn't You?

Re:The future is now. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138507)

Yeah, a while back. [slashdot.org] But hey, why not recycle if it will get you +5 right?

Re:The future is now. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138529)

No, he's a cut-n-paste troll. I feel kind of bad about blowing the whistle on him, as he's a beautiful example of what all trolls should aspire to, but, honestly, aren't people going to realize that this talk of stack smashing and juggling mangos sounds familiar?

Re:The future is now. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138670)

OMG he's a cut-n-paste troll?! Does the original author realize that his work is gone?

Re:The future is now. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138531)

Copied from his earlier post here [slashdot.org]

Let me be the first to call bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138541)

bullshit.

Re:The future is now. (1)

Bodhammer (559311) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138722)

Let us think of a computer processing unit as a juggler, and bytes as mangoes. Older CPUs would juggle one mango at a time, and frequently require modifications to the stage to boot. Around the 1980s, they could juggle two mangoes. Then four around 1990, and today as many as eight at a time! Now you would be expected to be quite impressed with each leap, notwithstanding the fact that you really wanted a juggler that could handle melons, grapefruit, or watermelon slices instead of (or in addition to) mangoes. In addition, the fact that you are juggling in a zoo where a primate is free to grab your fruit and substitute twigs (or worse!)
I prefer to use this [as-seen-on...tore-1.com] instead, it has the "Automatic Pulp Ejection" module. The loud noise also keeps the primates away...

I can see it working (5, Funny)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138376)

But they might need to rephase the modulators and run in through some sort of tachion inverter feild.

Re:I can see it working (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138524)

No problem. They should be able to reconfigure the deflector array to emit a modulating anti-graviton beam. That should create a tachyon inverter field big enough to stablize the plasmonic infrastructure.

Re:I can see it working (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138534)

That's good, but if we route a phased graviton pulse through the GNDN tubes, and output through the main deflector dish, we can probably get an order of magnitude increase. We'll need to divert warp power to the shields to protect against reflected Bertol Rays, though.

Either that, or we change the gravitational constant of the universe. Take your pick.

Re:I can see it working (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138622)

I see where you're going with this.

What if we use our warp engines to create a subspace pocket? That should give us the gravitational constant we need, and we can use the phase variance recouplers to stablize it.

Re:I can see it working (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138652)

how about we just rephase these posts to where the joke was funny the first time and not the third time? oh wait.. already done.

Re:I can see it working (2, Funny)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138664)

Good thought, but we should be careful to avoid a feedback loop which could overload the inertial dampeners, and possibly cause the subspace bubble to either lose cohesion, or perhaps even become detached from the regular space-time continuum. Don't laugh - I've had it happen, and you wouldn't _believe_ the amount of trouble it is to get the Traveller to help you out. What a primadonna, and his consultation fees are outrageous!

Heat (3, Insightful)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138387)

How much heat are these things going to generate though. Because you know E = hf, if you have 100,000 times the frequency, your going to need to throw in 100,000 times the energy!! Of course that is simplification of what is really happening with these kinds of chips and it is much more complicated then just 100,000 times the energy needed. But it seems like these things might make the Pentium IV seems like a fridge!

Re:Heat (3, Insightful)

markana (152984) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138479)

This is why the plasma conduits in the Federation control panels keep blowing up in their faces...

Re:Heat (1)

tanmay80 (864634) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138511)

6.63*10^-34 * 10^5... :) not much i would guess :)

Re:Heat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138618)

the fact that an electron has mass, and a photon is practically massless, would mean that moving an electron at a lower frequency would likely still require a higher energy expenditure.

Re:Heat (2, Funny)

ralphclark (11346) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138624)

Piffle! Just use a smaller value of Planck's constant! Easy. :o)

Re:Heat (4, Informative)

barawn (25691) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138648)

How much heat are these things going to generate though. Because you know E = hf, if you have 100,000 times the frequency, your going to need to throw in 100,000 times the energy!! Of course that is simplification of what is really happening with these kinds of chips and it is much more complicated then just 100,000 times the energy needed. But it seems like these things might make the Pentium IV seems like a fridge!

Power does usually scale with the frequency, but it also scales with the signal strength (number of carriers: intensity in a photonic case, ~voltage in an electronic case). If you can up the frequency by a factor of two and cut the voltage (for instance) by a factor of two, it's the same power usage.

Of course, using E = hf is completely wrong here - that's the energy of a photon, and in a completely photonic chip, wouldn't matter in the tiniest bit - because the photons are emitted at one point, and absorbed at another, so there's no net energy loss.

Most of the places where the frequency dependence comes in are energy losses - like the resistance of a wire. With light, there's very little energy loss (in a fiber, for instance), so the chip will run very, very cool.

Re:Heat (1)

Biff Stu (654099) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138758)

This is not an issue because we are far from the quantum limit here. You are correct that the plasmons are quantized. The RF energy that travels through the interconnects on conventional chips is also quantized. Nobody talks about this because it is a non-issue. Even even when you scale things up by 10^4, it's a non issue. You can just use 10^4 times fewer quanta to deliver your signals and the power can stay the same.

Re:Heat (1)

rapidweather (567364) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138900)

...100,000 times the energy needed...

Here's a link to a Forbidden Planet [forbidden-planet.org] site, where they have a series of photos, one or two showing the vast power source beneath the surface of Altair IV, the "Forbidden Planet".

A setup like that is where the "100,000 times the energy" might come from. The actor who explained the power setup was Walter Pidgeon [reelclassics.com] .

At that link they have movie posters and storyline on Forbidden Planet. I saw the movie when it was current in 1956, and we really believed in that vast power source after Dr. Moribus explained it to the movie audience! If you have not seen this movie, go rent it, it's great.

So, with a little luck, the new extremely fast processor will be a reality before long...BTW, here's a link [toptechnews.com] to a new Hitachi 1000 GB hard drive that is now being tested, using a new twist on storage technology. Can't wait. (Isn't science fiction/fact wonderful?)

Plasmonics for Invisibility (3, Interesting)

MLopat (848735) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138408)

Another use for this technology maybe rendering objects invisible to the observer. Using plasmons to stop light from scattering back to the observer's eyes. Unfortunately it can only be used to hide very small objects since the wave lengths of the light need to be near the size of the object that reflecting them.

If anyone wants anymore info on this check out this link [slashdot.org] .

Re:Plasmonics for Invisibility (1)

MLopat (848735) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138427)

My apologies, the correct link is here [technovelgy.com]

Re:Plasmonics for Invisibility (1)

halftrack (454203) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138546)

If you want to stop light from scattering back to the observer's eyes you could use a new, hot technology. We call it _black_paint_ where I come frome.

Re:Plasmonics for Invisibility (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138611)

That's kinda funny. But you do realize that just because you paint something black, you can still see the fucking thing?!

Re:Plasmonics for Invisibility (2, Insightful)

EvilSporkMan (648878) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138750)

Yes, and stopping the light from reaching the observer's eyes would also cause the region to appear black. You actually need complete transparency and cleanliness for invisibility (i.e. passing light instead of stopping it).

Now I know where all the alien nanobugs are hiding (1)

RedLaggedTeut (216304) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138593)

Behind a nanoscopic plasmonic shield oscillating at rotating frequencies.

And yes, you alien Lords of the Nanobuts, I'll shut up now.

R. P. Article (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138429)

The ads bother you? Adblock [mozilla.org] plus This [geocities.com] will eliminate any of his ads.

Why is this a troll? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138963)

The AC is offering a technique for viewing Roland Piquapaille's site without supporting him through ads. Hardly a troll. If it hurts him that much, he can stop submitting stories to Slashdot.

Plasmonics does not sound like... (4, Funny)

stefanlasiewski (63134) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138432)

Plasmonics does not sound like a perfectly cromulent word. Are you sure that the authors haven't embiggened the word a bit a bit? I mean, it's not unpossible...

Re:Plasmonics does not sound like... (2, Funny)

tomcode (261182) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138471)

Didn't the Plasmonics tour with the Dead Kennedys in the 1980s?

Re:Plasmonics does not sound like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138590)

I think they played backup for the exploited also..
FC--

Re:Plasmonics does not sound like... (1)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138492)

All cromulance aside the embignation of the issue is not important as its dohlarity is blogular and it becomes cromulant.

Extreme Plasmonics (1)

Cumstien (637803) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138682)

And if Intel makes a dual core plasmonics processor it will be called the Extreme Plasmonics SUX-2000. Or something like that.

Re:Extreme Plasmonics (1)

amliebsch (724858) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138776)

the Extreme Plasmonics SUX-2000.

Wow! I'd buy that for a dollar!

The Answer will be... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138436)

plasmonic repeaters.

Roland Piquepaille and Slashdot: Is there a connec (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138446)

Roland Piquepaille and Slashdot: Is there a connection?

I think most of you are aware of the controversy surrounding regular Slashdot article submitter Roland Piquepaille. For those of you who don't know, please allow me to bring forth all the facts. Roland Piquepaille has an online journal (I refuse to use the word "blog") located at http://www.primidi.com/ [primidi.com] . It is titled "Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends". It consists almost entirely of content, both text and pictures, taken from reputable news websites and online technical journals. He does give credit to the other websites, but it wasn't always so. Only after many complaints were raised by the Slashdot readership did he start giving credit where credit was due. However, this is not what the controversy is about.

Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends serves online advertisements through a service called Blogads, located at www.blogads.com. Blogads is not your traditional online advertiser; rather than base payments on click-throughs, Blogads pays a flat fee based on the level of traffic your online journal generates. This way Blogads can guarantee that an advertisement on a particular online journal will reach a particular number of users. So advertisements on high traffic online journals are appropriately more expensive to buy, but the advertisement is guaranteed to be seen by a large amount of people. This, in turn, encourages people like Roland Piquepaille to try their best to increase traffic to their journals in order to increase the going rates for advertisements on their web pages. But advertisers do have some flexibility. Blogads serves two classes of advertisements. The premium ad space that is seen at the top of the web page by all viewers is reserved for "Special Advertisers"; it holds only one advertisement. The secondary ad space is located near the bottom half of the page, so that the user must scroll down the window to see it. This space can contain up to four advertisements and is reserved for regular advertisers, or just "Advertisers".

Before we talk about money, let's talk about the service that Roland Piquepaille provides in his journal. He goes out and looks for interesting articles about new and emerging technologies. He provides a very brief overview of the articles, then copies a few choice paragraphs and the occasional picture from each article and puts them up on his web page. Finally, he adds a minimal amount of original content between the copied-and-pasted text in an effort to make the journal entry coherent and appear to add value to the original articles. Nothing more, nothing less.

Now let's talk about money. Visit BlogAds to check the following facts for yourself. As of today, December XX 2004, the going rate for the premium advertisement space on Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends is $375 for one month. One of the four standard advertisements costs $150 for one month. So, the maximum advertising space brings in $375 x 1 + $150 x 4 = $975 for one month. Obviously not all $975 will go directly to Roland Piquepaille, as Blogads gets a portion of that as a service fee, but he will receive the majority of it. According to the FAQ, Blogads takes 20%. So Roland Piquepaille gets 80% of $975, a maximum of $780 each month. www.primidi.com is hosted by clara.net (look it up at Network Solutions ). Browsing clara.net's hosting solutions, the most expensive hosting service is their Clarahost Advanced priced at £69.99 GBP. This is roughly, at the time of this writing, $130 USD. Assuming Roland Piquepaille pays for the Clarahost Advanced hosting service, he is out $130 leaving him with a maximum net profit of $650 each month. Keeping your website registered with Network Solutions cost $34.99 per year, or about $3 per month. This leaves Roland Piquepaille with $647 each month. He may pay for additional services related to his online journal, but I was unable to find any evidence of this.

All of the above are cold, hard, verifiable facts, except where stated otherwise. Now I will give you my personal opinion.

It appears that every single article submitted to Slashdot by Roland Piquepaille is accepted, and he submits multiple articles each month. As of today, it is clear that ten articles were accepted in October, six in November, and four in December (so far). See his page for yourself. Some generate lots of discussion; others very little. What is clear is that, on a whole, this generates a lot of traffic for Roland Piquepaille. Just over 150000 hits each month according to Blogads. And the higher the traffic, the higher the advertisement rates Roland Piquepaille can charge. So, why do the Slashdot editors accept every single story from Roland Piquepaille? Is the content of his journal interesting and insightful? Of course it is, but not by Roland Piquepaille's doing. The actual content of his journal is ripped from the real articles, but at least he gives them credit now. Does the content of his journal bring about energitic discussion from the Slashdot readership? Yes, because the original articles from which he got his content are well written and researched and full of details.

So you may be asking, "What is so controversial about this?" Well, in almost every single article submitted by Roland Piquepaille, Slashdot readers complain that Roland Piquepaille is simply plaigarizing the original articles and that rather than linking to Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends on the front page of Slashdot (guaranteeing a large amount of traffic for him), Slashdot should instead link to the original articles. In essence, avoid going through the middle man (and making money for him!). The Slashdot readership that can see through Roland Piquepaille's farce objects on the basis that he stands to make a generous amount of money by doing very little work and instead piggy-backing on the hard work of other professional writers. Others argue that he is providing us with a service and should not be ashamed to want to get paid for it. But exactly what service is he providing us with? He copies-and-pastes the meat of his journal entries from professional and academic journals and news magazines and submits about seven or eight of these "articles" to Slashdot each month. Is this "service" worth up to $647 a month? Or, does each "article" represent up to $80 of work?

The real question is, why does Slashdot continue to accept every single one of his submissions when many of the readers see through the scam and whole-heartedly object to what he is doing? Maybe the Slashdot editors don't have much journalistic integrity. Haha, just kidding. We all know they wouldn't know integrity if it bitch-slapped a disobediant user talking about Slashcode internals or shut down www.censorware.org [google.com] in a temper tantrum. Anyway, what incentive would Slashdot editors have to link to lame rehashes of original and insightful technology articles? What incentive would Roland Piquepaille have to constantly seek these tech articles and rehash them into lame journal entires and submit them to Slashdot? I submit to you, the Slashdot reader, that the incentive for each is one and the same. Now that you have been informed of the facts of the situation, you can make your own decision.

Re:Roland Piquepaille and Slashdot: Is there a con (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138751)

Before we talk about money, let's talk about the service that Roland Piquepaille provides in his journal. He goes out and looks for interesting articles about new and emerging technologies. He provides a very brief overview of the articles, then copies a few choice paragraphs and the occasional picture from each article and puts them up on his web page. Finally, he adds a minimal amount of original content between the copied-and-pasted text in an effort to make the journal entry coherent and appear to add value to the original articles. Nothing more, nothing less.

Sounds just like Slashdot but without the dupes!

So what's new? (1)

Geogriffith (861880) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138449)

"Plasmons are generated when, under the right conditions, light strikes a metal. The electric field of the light jiggles the electrons in the metal to the light's frequency, setting off density waves of electrons." Sounds to me like "plasmons" is just a different way of saying "electromagnetic radiation". Its just at different frequencies than visible light (x-rays, gamma rays, radio, etc.) Or maybe I am confusing waves of photons with waves of electrons. But then what is the difference between plasmons and regular, good old-fashioned-Ben-Franklin-zapping electricity?

Sounds like.... (5, Funny)

Valiss (463641) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138452)

Today, plasmons can only travel a few millimeters before dying, while today's chips are typically about a centimeter across.

Well, in that case, it sounds similar to my research. See, if you jump, you can fly. Now currently, I can only fly a foot or two. Of course, most people want to fly longer distances, but it's a start.

Re:Sounds like.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138632)

I can fly WAY farther than that, once.

Re:Sounds like.... (1)

fm6 (162816) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138723)

Aha! Another Yogic Flyer [mum.edu] !

Maybe use nano-wires? (2, Interesting)

Rightcoast (807751) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138477)

I know next to nothing about this field but wonder if it would be possible to bridge the gap in distance using using metal or ceramic nano-wires embedded on-chip for the plasmons to travel across?

Wiki Free (1, Interesting)

onyxruby (118189) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138478)

Is it really too much to ask for a wiki free link for reference? Articles written by the tyranny of the persistant dont tend to have much to do with reality. Really, I'm sure some school, corp, journal or industry site probably has something about this. How about a link to a google search, or something with some shred of credibility?

Wikipedia, because the tyranny of the persistant must be right.

Re:Wiki Free (4, Insightful)

kebes (861706) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138875)

As someone who posts using links to wikipedia occasionally, I must say that I object. When I'm looking for a source to explain what I'm talking about, I simply reference the best URL I can find. Very often, that is wikipedia. It doesn't really matter who hosts the data if I know it to be valid.

As someone who has done some research on surface plasmons, I find the wikipedia article on Plasmon to be accurate and useful, so I think it is a good reference. Not all wikipedia articles are so good, but then again I don't reference the bad ones.

On the other hand, you are pointing out that we shouldn't accept wikipedia articles just because wikipedia is cool and lots of people edited the article so it must be right. Yes, that's valid. However, as with *all* sources of information, whether it is a wiki or slashdot or an encyclopedia or the local news, the end-consumer MUST use his judgement to decide if the information is valid or BS. It is an illusion to think that traditional sources of information are error free. In all cases, the reader must simply use judgement and double-check if things seem wrong.

The truth about Roland Piquepaille (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138482)

Roland Piquepaille and Slashdot: Is there a connection?

I think most of you are aware of the controversy surrounding regular Slashdot article submitter Roland Piquepaille. For those of you who don't know, please allow me to bring forth all the facts. Roland Piquepaille has an online journal (I refuse to use the word "blog") located at http://www.primidi.com/ [primidi.com] . It is titled "Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends". It consists almost entirely of content, both text and pictures, taken from reputable news websites and online technical journals. He does give credit to the other websites, but it wasn't always so. Only after many complaints were raised by the Slashdot readership did he start giving credit where credit was due. However, this is not what the controversy is about.

Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends serves online advertisements through a service called Blogads, located at www.blogads.com. Blogads is not your traditional online advertiser; rather than base payments on click-throughs, Blogads pays a flat fee based on the level of traffic your online journal generates. This way Blogads can guarantee that an advertisement on a particular online journal will reach a particular number of users. So advertisements on high traffic online journals are appropriately more expensive to buy, but the advertisement is guaranteed to be seen by a large amount of people. This, in turn, encourages people like Roland Piquepaille to try their best to increase traffic to their journals in order to increase the going rates for advertisements on their web pages. But advertisers do have some flexibility. Blogads serves two classes of advertisements. The premium ad space that is seen at the top of the web page by all viewers is reserved for "Special Advertisers"; it holds only one advertisement. The secondary ad space is located near the bottom half of the page, so that the user must scroll down the window to see it. This space can contain up to four advertisements and is reserved for regular advertisers, or just "Advertisers".

Before we talk about money, let's talk about the service that Roland Piquepaille provides in his journal. He goes out and looks for interesting articles about new and emerging technologies. He provides a very brief overview of the articles, then copies a few choice paragraphs and the occasional picture from each article and puts them up on his web page. Finally, he adds a minimal amount of original content between the copied-and-pasted text in an effort to make the journal entry coherent and appear to add value to the original articles. Nothing more, nothing less.

Now let's talk about money. Visit BlogAds to check the following facts for yourself. As of today, December XX 2004, the going rate for the premium advertisement space on Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends is $375 for one month. One of the four standard advertisements costs $150 for one month. So, the maximum advertising space brings in $375 x 1 + $150 x 4 = $975 for one month. Obviously not all $975 will go directly to Roland Piquepaille, as Blogads gets a portion of that as a service fee, but he will receive the majority of it. According to the FAQ, Blogads takes 20%. So Roland Piquepaille gets 80% of $975, a maximum of $780 each month. www.primidi.com is hosted by clara.net (look it up at Network Solutions ). Browsing clara.net's hosting solutions, the most expensive hosting service is their Clarahost Advanced priced at £69.99 GBP. This is roughly, at the time of this writing, $130 USD. Assuming Roland Piquepaille pays for the Clarahost Advanced hosting service, he is out $130 leaving him with a maximum net profit of $650 each month. Keeping your website registered with Network Solutions cost $34.99 per year, or about $3 per month. This leaves Roland Piquepaille with $647 each month. He may pay for additional services related to his online journal, but I was unable to find any evidence of this.

All of the above are cold, hard, verifiable facts, except where stated otherwise. Now I will give you my personal opinion.

It appears that every single article submitted to Slashdot by Roland Piquepaille is accepted, and he submits multiple articles each month. As of today, it is clear that ten articles were accepted in October, six in November, and four in December (so far). See his page for yourself. Some generate lots of discussion; others very little. What is clear is that, on a whole, this generates a lot of traffic for Roland Piquepaille. Just over 150000 hits each month according to Blogads. And the higher the traffic, the higher the advertisement rates Roland Piquepaille can charge. So, why do the Slashdot editors accept every single story from Roland Piquepaille? Is the content of his journal interesting and insightful? Of course it is, but not by Roland Piquepaille's doing. The actual content of his journal is ripped from the real articles, but at least he gives them credit now. Does the content of his journal bring about energitic discussion from the Slashdot readership? Yes, because the original articles from which he got his content are well written and researched and full of details.

So you may be asking, "What is so controversial about this?" Well, in almost every single article submitted by Roland Piquepaille, Slashdot readers complain that Roland Piquepaille is simply plaigarizing the original articles and that rather than linking to Roland Piquepaille's Technology Trends on the front page of Slashdot (guaranteeing a large amount of traffic for him), Slashdot should instead link to the original articles. In essence, avoid going through the middle man (and making money for him!). The Slashdot readership that can see through Roland Piquepaille's farce objects on the basis that he stands to make a generous amount of money by doing very little work and instead piggy-backing on the hard work of other professional writers. Others argue that he is providing us with a service and should not be ashamed to want to get paid for it. But exactly what service is he providing us with? He copies-and-pastes the meat of his journal entries from professional and academic journals and news magazines and submits about seven or eight of these "articles" to Slashdot each month. Is this "service" worth up to $647 a month? Or, does each "article" represent up to $80 of work?

The real question is, why does Slashdot continue to accept every single one of his submissions when many of the readers see through the scam and whole-heartedly object to what he is doing? Maybe the Slashdot editors don't have much journalistic integrity. Haha, just kidding. We all know they wouldn't know integrity if it bitch-slapped a disobediant user talking about Slashcode internals or shut down www.censorware.org [google.com] in a temper tantrum. Anyway, what incentive would Slashdot editors have to link to lame rehashes of original and insightful technology articles? What incentive would Roland Piquepaille have to constantly seek these tech articles and rehash them into lame journal entires and submit them to Slashdot? I submit to you, the Slashdot reader, that the incentive for each is one and the same. Now that you have been informed of the facts of the situation, you can make your own decision.

Plasmonics? (2, Funny)

tekrat (242117) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138487)

Wasn't that a Punk Rock Band from the 80's with Wendy O'Williams?

Re:Plasmonics? (1)

Rightcoast (807751) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138526)

Nope, that was The Plasmatics...and boy was she hot.

It was the Plasmatics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138542)

And WOW was a piece of work, for sure.

Obligatory pr0n (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12139088)

For all you pr0n connissieurs ...
she could transmit ping balls out of her cha-cha
at incredible speed

Wendy O'Williams... (2, Funny)

Sebastopol (189276) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138508)

... is making semiconductors???

Oh, plasMONICS... my bad...

(I know, I know: she's deceased)

Ob. MST3k reference (3, Funny)

loqi (754476) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138561)

"He worked at Plasmonics Institute, just an engineer in a sealed white suit... he did a good job in the computer race, but his bosses didn't like him so they shot him into space!"

What the...? (4, Interesting)

barawn (25691) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138571)

Claiming "100,000 times the frequency" is a little misleading. You're not talking about the processor running at terahertz speeds - simply put, you can't make things small enough to do that. Plasmonic signals, photonic signals, electronic signals - they all travel on the order of light speed. There really wouldn't be much point raising the clock frequency beyond the characteristic length of the processing unit (Pentium 4 designers understand this now - they had to put "drive" stages into the pipeline just to allow signals to propagate, and that deep pipeline lead to a very low IPC).

This would be useful for things like memory and processor interconnects, because you could shove gigantic amounts of data. Hence the reason that the article stresses their use as high-traffic freeways. I'm not sure I see the point in an all-plasmonic chip (unless they've got power advantages) because of size concerns.

Transistors move data? (4, Insightful)

dfn5 (524972) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138680)

Today, we're using basically two ways to move data in our computers: transistors carry small amounts of data and are extremely small

I don't know about your computer, but my computer uses wires to move data and transistors to process said data. I don't see how one can compare transistors to fiber optic cables.

Yet another SciFi point of view... (3, Interesting)

pyrotas (862419) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138744)

Plasmons can be easily created in metallic nanotubes. Furthermore, it is possible to create them into an entangled state. This _in principle_ might be exploited on the quantum computation scale.

Re:Yet another SciFi point of view... (2, Funny)

Urusai (865560) | more than 9 years ago | (#12139093)

So you suggest quantum-entangling plasmonic conduits? If we fold them into 11-space we can also exploit zero-point dark energy in the Einstein-Svengali manifold continuum, giving us a positronic gage vector consistent with the Hawking-Niebelungen juxtaposition. What were we talking about?

is it just me, or... (1)

technoCon (18339) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138859)

does anyone else think the term 'plasmonics' sounds like something you'd see in the movie 'Barbarella?'

Do you think (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12138864)

these chips would be in production in time for Duke Nukem Forever?

Given time, more feasible? (2, Insightful)

StimpyPimp (821985) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138912)

"Today, plasmons can only travel a few millimeters before dying, while today's chips are typically about a centimeter across."

Maybe its just me, but as electronics become smaller and smaller, wouldn't this be more and more possible?

Just in time (manditory joke) (3, Funny)

joey_knisch (804995) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138923)

Hmm... Let's see...

7 years: Develop efficient plasmonic tech.
5 years: Create manufacturing process
+3 years: Design cpu
________________________________

15 years: Just in time for Duke Nukem Forever

Re:Just in time (manditory joke) (1)

joey_knisch (804995) | more than 9 years ago | (#12139006)

man-di-to-ry
adj.
1. Required or commanded by authority; obligatory:
8 howers of sleap arr manditory foure funktioning

2. Of, having the nature of, or containing a mandate.

3...


Sorry guys and gals. Forgot the golden rule... 1) Sleep. 2) Spellcheck. 3) Post.

Well, duh (1)

xeon4life (668430) | more than 9 years ago | (#12138939)

You don't need a thesis, dissertation, white paper, or science magazine to tell you that the closer you put things together the faster their particles can travel.

How can you ask (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12139058)

your critically thinking audience to read an article at Wikipedia.org? It's mass hysteria.

I cannot English (1)

trouser (149900) | more than 9 years ago | (#12139072)

fiber optic cables can carry huge amounts of data, but are much bigger in size, but smaller in Cleveland.

Boom boom.
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