Last December, I got to travel to Dell's facilities in Texas for the first time, where I joined a group of other tech journalists for a preview of Dell's CES lineup. Among the tech writers was Anand Lal Shimpi, founder of the tech-enthusiast site Anandtech.com. We were at Dell for only a day, and that night at dinner Anand and I got to talking about solid-state hard drives, particularly why we saw such a difference between Intel's X-25M and a competing drive from Patriot.
With the aid of a handful of multicolored sugar packets, Anand put on a clinic describing the process by which solid-state hard drives manage data reads and writes. He had the attention of every journalist at the table.
At the end of the lesson, Anand mentioned an investigation he had brewing into the long-term degradation of solid-state drive performance. With all the excitement about solid-state drives, particularly in the Macbook Air, and Dell's new Adamo, that's a disheartening question to have to ask. Intel's solid-state drives, in particular, have been well-received, but at $349 for an 80GB model, they're also amazingly expensive compared with standard-platter hard drives, even after a recent price drop.
I admit I haven't had a chance to read the whole article yet, but Anand posted the results of his investigation Wednesday.
If you're familiar with Anandtech, you know it's not uncommon for a graphics card review to hit 12 pages or more. Anand's SSD article clocks in at a cool 31. Now that our Mac Pro review is done (posting soon, copy edit-willing) I intend to tuck into the story in full, but no less than Linus Torvalds has already come out in praise of Anand's work. If you have any interest in SSD technology, I suggest you get comfortable and check out what Anand has to say.