In 2010, Jeff Dean gave a talk that laid out a list of numbers every programmer should know. His list has since become relatively well known among the systems community.

The other day, a friend mentioned a latency number to me, and I realized that it was an order of magnitude smaller than what I had memorized from Jeff’s talk. The problem, of course, is that hardware performance increases exponentially! After some digging, I actually found that the numbers Jeff quotes are over a decade old [1].

Partly inspired by my officemate Aurojit Panda, who is collecting awesome data on hardware performance, I decided to write a little tool [2] to visualize Jeff’s numbers as a function of time [3].

Without further ado, here it is.


[1] Jeff’s numbers are from 2001, and were first publicized by Peter Norvig in this article.

[2] Layout stolen directly from ayshen on GitHub.

[3] The hardware trends I’ve gathered are rough estimates. If you want to tweak the parameters yourself, I’ve made it really easy to do so – please send me updates! Better yet, issue a pull request.