Memory keeps getting cheaper and better

Memory keeps getting cheaper and better

Memory keeps getting cheaper and better

I recently picked up a portable 5TB drive for around US$100 (3,516 baht) and it reminded me of the time I got a 500MB internal drive for about the same price, but the difference is a thousand times the storage that can be carried with you for the same amount of money. Yes, the value of money has changed somewhat during that time so the original drive actually cost more but you get the idea, things keep getting better and the prices keep dropping. I sometimes wonder how long this will last, but for a few decades now that has been the story and it looks like it will be that way for the near future at least.

- That may not be true for the upcoming Apple goggles though, which have a very high price. But since they have just released some development tools for people to start building for it, Apple appears to be serious about the unit. I still wonder how many competitors they will have by the start of next year.

- If you are a database developer, you won't be surprised that the majority favour PostgreSQL over all others. A recent survey of 90,000 developers found that PostgreSQL leads MySQL, which is a swap from a couple of years back. These are followed by SQLite, MongoDB and then Microsoft SQL Server. The currently in-use production database figures are much different. In this list, Oracle is on top followed by MySQL, SQL Server and PostgreSQL coming at fourth. PostgreSQL gets its name from post-Ingres since it began as a project to improve the Ingres database engine back in the 1980s. It's now cross-platform, free and open-source.

- In this week's just because category, the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has built a new atomic clock that's small enough to fit your pocket. The chip-scale beam clock (CSBC) is about the size of a postage stamp and it uses regular technologies for measuring time via rubidium atoms. NIST already had some small atomic clocks in the form of the chip-scale atomic clock, or CSAC, but this latest technology uses atomic beams like the older, bigger models do. The early models of the new CSBCs lose a second or so every few thousand years so they need to sort out some temperature issues. If they get it right, these devices will be used for underwater oil and gas exploration, military navigation and telecommunications. They will also be useful where GPS reception is still a problem. If you were wondering, the bigger versions have a one-second drift every million years and the best ones are a hundred times better. If you're still curious head over to and check out the news.

- So, what happens when a bored programmer, still using Windows 3.1, wants to use ChatGPT? They write a ChatGPT client for Windows 3.1 of course. The currently unnamed individual took the ChatGPT code, written in C, compiled it with Open Wacom v2, made sure Winsock was running and voila, ChatGPT on Windows 3.1. This also means those with any later version of Windows can also run it if so desired. The writer, who has the name @dialupdotnet on Twitter, does point out that the program is not secure but then neither is Windows 3.1 these days. This person was also the one who wrote Windle, a Wordle clone for Windows 3.1. I guess that some people just can't let go of older technology while embracing newer ones.

- If you were wondering, there are already people designing and building AI systems to catch and block those writing AI systems that hack into people's computers. Sound familiar? Of course it does. For years, people have been writing anti-virus software to block those writing malware. The only difference is that we are now handing both sides of the process to AI products.

- The Gartner Group recently released a report on what businesses think about the generic metaverse. No, not the one from Marvel but the virtual reality-based worlds. The bottom line, based on talks with 52 metaverse providers and analysis of 170 adopter implementations, is that they don't think they are very good yet and are not all that useful.

- Gartner identified two main issues. Other than games, the environments don't live up to expectations. If you compare them to something like the one portrayed in the movie Ready Player One, we are a long way away from that kind of fake reality. The other use case, also seen in many movies, is using an avatar to attend a meeting, but again they found this was not compelling enough to create a long-term universe. Small meetings have some appeal but there are still issues with facial expressions and how well they sync in real time. The more accurately this happens, the more expensive the technology and communications required. It turns out that Gen Z are the ones most likely to use these technologies and even then, most are only interested in the gaming experience. Cost, comfort and the overall experience with the current technologies are the factors keeping people away.

James Hein is an IT professional with over 30 years' standing. You can contact him at

Do you like the content of this article?