Over the last few decades, progress in the IT sector has been driven primarily by Moore’s Law: which states that overall computing power would double roughly every one and a half years and the cost drop. Indeed, 50 years later this has held true – to the point that modern computing chips now have so much power that it would have been almost unimaginable when Moore first made his prediction. However, it recently emerged that things are going to be changing and that Moore’s law will cease to be. Chip manufacturer Intel recently announced that their chip roadmap was changing to increased performance every 2.5 years – and there are questions marks about what things will look like in the 2020s / 2030s when it might not be possible to further increase performance at all.
On the one hand, this could look like a real risk to the industry, what *will* we do when computing power ceases to increase on a regular basis? But in reality, it might inject something much needed in the computing sector – innovation. That’s not to say there hasn’t been any, but there hasn’t been much variation. Short of the theoretical implementation of quantum computing (which only has limited uses at this stage), the focus has been on making computers more powerful rather than anything else. There is a possibility for this to be one of the pivotal moments in IT history – but only time will tell if it’s the case.
There are definitely lessons to learn here, sometimes when the going is good we don’t necessarily consider different paths that could lead to different – but not necessarily worse – results. Chip manufacturers have invariably been enjoying their ‘good thing’ though we will have to wait and see if the big industry names have been spending enough time on alternative strategies to survive when the industry changes. As a PR agency, this is also something we are aware of. It’s vital to continually assess how a different strategy could lead to different – or indeed better results for our clients.
It can become all too easy to rely on a combination of good journalist relationships, press releases and press briefings, after-all, that’s probably what most people outside of the industry expect us to be doing. The trick, however, is not to fall into this hypothetical rut, as PR can really be far more than this. As well as press releases, briefings, features and issues response there is the potential to come up with innovative campaign ideas that capture people’s attention in a different way. Whether it’s coming up with a research idea that gets everyone in the target industry thinking or inviting journalists to tailored events, there are many ways to get coverage that don’t require the use of the same old tactics. That’s not to say that there isn’t a place for ‘standard’ tactics but as the media industry changes PR must equally keep up to ensure it doesn’t end up like Moore’s Law.