” 640K [of memory] ought to be enough for anybody” is a famous quote supposedly uttered by Bill Gates at a computer trade show in 1981. Gates’ comments were in defense of the 640KB usable Random Access Memory (RAM) limit that had just been introduced in the market. It turned out that the comment was one of the most dogmatic and short-sighted. Bill Gates’ assertion would soon come to haunt him as the computer industry had to endure the pain of being limited to a 640KB memory despite the rising demand to increase its capacity. Consequently, there was no provision for expanding the RAM limit and this was hectic given the enormous amount of data that was required to be fed in computers as the world embraced technology. The key lessons from the 640KB ordeals are that components of size and accommodation for growth should be prioritized in database design and management.
After learning from the failures of the 640KB memory limit, determination of size, and provision for expansion of memory are key components that should be considered in databases. Using the nursing context as a point of reference, identifying areas of record-keeping will be instrumental in determining the memory size of databases. Some of the areas of interest that could be considered may include; verification and obtaining a patient’s history, documenting a patient’s history, writing orders for medication, and drug organization records (Barnsteiner, 2017). Thereafter, one can easily predict a database’s memory size that may be required after observing a given organization’s needs. Nonetheless, since data is growing exponentially, it is hard to determine the exact storage required by databases; therefore, memory allocated to it should always allow new data insertions (Lai, 2008). Otherwise, systems will be overwhelmed making processing of queries an impossible task.
Bill Gates‘ controversial quote has since turned out to be the center of discussion following the need to continuously expand memory limit for databases. The lesson drawn from Gates’ statement is that determination of size and accommodation for growth in memory allocation is essential for the effective performance of databases. Otherwise, systems will likely be overwhelmed and underperform.
Barnsteiner, J. (2017). Medication Reconciliation. Retrieved August 09, 2020, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK2648/
Lai, E. (2008). The ‘640K’ quote won’t go away — but did Gates really say it? Retrieved August 09, 2020, from https://www.computerworld.com/article/2534312/the–640k–quote-won-t-go-away—-but-did-gates-really-say-it-.html