Readers have asked when I will be speaking at the Flash Memory Summit. There will be a number of opportunities to see me there.
Before I give details, I should make sure that anyone who is unfamiliar with the show knows that this is an annual event that has grown steadily over the past 14 years to become the biggest show of its kind. It is held in the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, California, in early August. This year it will be Tuesday-Thursday, August 6-8, and is preceded by the MRAM Developer Day.
Here are the details of Continue reading “My Flash Memory Summit Schedule”
Error Correction Codes, ECC, are not only important to today’s NAND flash market, but they have been a cause of concern to NAND users for a number of years. The Memory Guy has been intending for some time to write a low-level primer on ECC, and I am finally getting it done!
Why is ECC necessary on NAND flash, yet it’s not used for other memory technologies? The simple answer is that NAND’s purpose is to be the absolute cheapest memory on the market, and one way to achieve the lowest-possible cost is to relax the standards for data integrity — to allow bit errors every so often. This technique has been used for a long time in both communications channels and in hard disk drives. Data communication systems can transfer more data using less bandwidth and a weaker signal over longer distances if they use error correction to restore distorted data. Hard disk drives can pack more bits onto a platter if the bits don’t all have to work right. These markets (and probably certain others) have invested a lot of money in ECC research and development, and as a result ECC today is a very well-developed science.
Denali Software published a nice Continue reading “How 3D NAND Shrinks ECC Requirements”
SanDisk has introduced an SD Card with a whopping 512 gigabytes of storage. Noting that SD Card capacities have increased by 1,000 times over the past ten years, from 512MB to 512GB, the company says that this product is aimed at professional HD videographers (who can justify its $800 price) allowing them to shoot Raw-format footage without shutting their cameras off, which could potentially allow them to miss a magic moment.
To The Memory Guy this represents an amazing piece of packaging technology. Let’s see why:
In 2003 SanDisk’s 512MB card contained Continue reading “SanDisk’s Amazing 512GB SD Card”
At the Intel Developer Forum in mid September Kingston Technology demonstrated a prototype of an intriguing product certified by Microsoft to support the Windows To Go version of Windows 8 Enterprise. The device, called the DataTraveler Workspace (or DT Workspace for short) is more than the simple USB flash drive it resembles.
While a USB flash drive or thumb drive contains little more than a USB flash controller and some NAND flash, the DT Workspace includes a full SSD (based on a standard SandForce controller) plus DRAM. Windows compatible systems and certain other systems can boot through the USB port with full operation securely remaining Continue reading “Kingston’s ‘Windows To Go’ Thumb Drive”
Last January at the Storage Visions Conference in Las Vegas (held every year just prior to CES) I asked the audience what they would do when NAND flash reached a price of 35¢ per gigabyte. My projection (the dotted red line on the chart at left) was that prices would reach that level by the end of the year.
My audience was shocked to hear such a low price!
Price declines open up new markets. It was time to think creatively, I said, because that’s where pricing would be by the end of 2012.
Well, I was wrong – according to Continue reading “NAND Flash at 35 Cents per Gigabyte”
DensBits, an Israeli start-up, has introduced a new technology and a new product today. The company’s new eMMC controller, the DB3610, embodies DensBits’ “Memory Modem” technology, which is a blend of ECC, DSP, and flash management that the company says can give TLC flash endurance superior to that of MLC flash with performance nearly as good as competing controllers can provide with MLC.
That’s a big claim!
DensBits’ Memory Modem views NAND flash as a noisy communications channel, using those algorithms developed to support deep Continue reading “DensBits – Making TLC Act Like MLC”
The Memory Guy was a little surprised to see the advertisement in this post’s graphic. It was from an April 8 newspaper ad for Fry’s Electronics.
It’s a little early to see NAND selling for this little: The original price of $21.99 for a 32GB USB flash drive comes to $0.69/GB, and the price after the rebate of $16.99 means that the price per gigabyte of the flash is only $0.53!
At the time the lowest spot market pricing for MLC flash on the InSpectrum spot price website was $0.53, and $0.47 for TLC. According to DRAMeXchange MLC is selling for as little as $0.48.
That’s not a lot of margin for Patriot or Fry’s when you add in the cost of t Continue reading “How Cheap is Flash?”
The annual International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) is a gathering in which the brightest minds in semiconductors come to meet and share the results of their recent research and development efforts. This year the four keynotes at the opening plenary centered on a “Green” outlook, through Storage, Control, Computing, and Energy.
Naturally, as “The Memory Guy,” I focused all of my attention upon the storage keynote, given by SanDisk’s recently-retired CEO Eli Harari. Some of the more interesting points I came away with were: Continue reading “Harari Delivers Inspiring Keynote at ISSCC”
Today Micron CEO Steve Appleton was killed in an airplane accident. Objective Analysis has issued an alert to our clients and subscribers giving details of the wreck, Appleton’s contributions to the company, and some thoughts on the company’s succession. The Alert can be viewed by visiting the Objective Analysis Reports page.
Most of all my thoughts and sympathies go to Appleton’s family and his former co-workers, all of whom are mourning his death. Although we realize that Mr. Appleton will be missed, but we know that Micron will continue to follow the path set up by Appleton’s predecessor, Micron founder Jerry Parkinson, to maintain its position as one of the leading memory chip suppliers.