Gordan Bell formulated Bell’s Law in 1972 to explain the formation, evolution, and potential extinction of different types of computing systems, also known as computer classes. These classes of computers bring forth new applications, leading to the emergence of fresh markets and industries. Bell sees this law as somewhat connected to Moore’s Law, which states that the number of transistors per chip doubles every 24 months.
However, unlike Moore’s Law, a new computer class typically arises from the utilization of lower-cost components with fewer transistors or lesser bits on a magnetic surface. Approximately every decade, a new class emerges, and it takes around ten years to comprehend how it evolves and is likely to continue. Once established, a more affordable class may advance in performance, ultimately disrupting an existing class. This evolution has given rise to scalable personal computer clusters, ranging from a single PC to thousands of computers, covering various price points and performance levels. These clusters have even become the largest supercomputers of their time.
ROUGHLY EVERY DECADE A NEW, LOWER PRICED COMPUTER CLASS FORMS BASED ON A NEW PROGRAMMING PLATFORM, NETWORK, AND INTERFACE RESULTING IN NEW USAGE AND THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A NEW INDUSTRY.
Scalable clusters became a universally applicable class starting in the mid-1990s, and it is predicted that by 2010, clusters consisting of at least one million independent computers will make up the world’s largest cluster. Approximately every decade, a new computer class based on a new programming platform, network, and interface emerges, leading to new applications and the establishment of a fresh industry.