Couple of observations:
- On the "lazy developer" issue, for sure developers are less careful to eke performance out of systems than before. I actually started on a ZX81 many years ago and wrote a graphical data analysis app that fit in 16k (and evaporated every time I nudged the RAM pack.) At that time a lot of time was spent on micro-optimizations just because hardware resources were so limited. Now there is no need to tune to that level. Faster hardware is not just for faster performance, it also allows developers to work more quickly by using higher level abstractions and spending less effort on tuning. If the applications do not need ultimate performance, this is a Good Thing. Hardware is cheap, developers are not.
If/when Moore's Law does grind to a halt then you may see the balance shift again and more resources are spent on tuning.
- On the article itself, I think it is a very insightful analysis and I'm disappointed that some here dismiss it with a wave of the hand and a "they'll think of something" comment. Clearly the current course is not sustainable, and it is not at all clear that something will come along just in time to save the day. Although it is possible, I prefer not to live by faith, and it is worth seriously considering the possibility that performance improvements will fall off dramatically in the future. That will lead to a very significant realignment of priorities in the industry, and may actually be a good thing.