Originally Posted by Neitzluber
Yeah, but you could run eighty Pentium 4 processors back in 2006 and you'd still have your 80 cores, but that still isn't an 80 core processor.
The point is that they overreached with their prediction (or their goal) or they cheaped out on their engineering somewhere along the way, so that they couldn't achieve their stated goal and hoped everyone would forget about it (on which point they pretty much succeeded).
This brings me to limitation #1 to technological development in a free-market system: Conformity. Unless you're behind your competitor, there's no incentive to make a big leap in technology to justify the massive cost of development to your shareholders.
Since AMD and Intel (as with AMD/ATI and NVIDIA) just play catch-up with each other whenever one or the other falls behind, or simply make a small increment when either is winning, technology will continue to crawl along for the next few years until a new company or partnership between existing companies springs up with something revolutionary (quantum computers?) and thus forces the traditional semiconductor makers to make a big leap in technological advancement in order to remain in existence.
Difference from that and 80 pentium 4s is, 80 pentiums 4 motherboards have to be a in a cluster. You can put 8 E7-8series chips on one board.