5. Expect more efforts in hybrid DRAM/flash cards that plug into PCIe or DDR buses. Jim Handy of Objective Analysis tells me Cypress/Agiga, Viking, and Micron already offer a class of non-volatile DIMMs that plug flash into the memory bus. Startup Diablo championed for the concept SSDs plugging into the memory bus at the event in 2013. It gained backing from IBM, but some analysts say such offerings will be more niche than the PCIe mainstream.
Viking is one of a handful of companies with hybrid DRAM/Flash cards.
This activity is not unusual. Anytime something big breaks out the way SSDs have, the industry always tries every combination of new things to milk the innovation to the max.
What I don't think we have seen yet is a DRAM card plugging into the PCIe bus. That could change after the smoke clears next week.
6. Expect technologists from datacenters at Alibaba and Microsoft to speak at the event. These days when the big datacenters speak, people listen. Our digital economy increasingly runs on services handled by companies like Google and Facebook (not speaking at the event), which are driving the technology of servers, networking, and memory.
What I haven’t heard much of yet is the use of big flash arrays or flash appliance accelerators in the datacenter. These users tend to be so cost sensitive they are more likely to explore tape drives than flash arrays. But next week we may hear about some new opportunities opening up.
I don't expect the flash feeding frenzy will end anytime soon. The devices have an interesting new roadmap with vertical NAND, and everybody and his brother is still looking for new sockets and algorithms to drive flash into new sockets and slots in the system-memory hierarchy.
Organizers say registration for the event is up 15%. They think in 2015 they might max out their location at the Santa Clara Convention Center. I hear this sort of hype all the time, but in this case I'm inclined to believe it.
— Rick Merritt, Silicon Valley Bureau Chief, EE Times