Strange Loop

Promise and Pitfalls of Persistent Memory

On the surface, adapting software in the cloud to use persistent memory seems obvious. After all, persistent memory is simply fast memory that maintains state when the power goes out, like a SSD. But unlike SSDs, the rise of persistent memory inherently challenges long-held ideas and conventions about how software works. While the dust has yet to settle, some basic guidelines about how to best enable software to use persistent memory have become clear. In this session, we'll present four key ideas from our experience enabling software for persistent memory over the last year, for you to apply to your own enablement strategy.

  1. Persistent memory is not exactly like memory nor storage.
  2. Persistent memory will be used in concert with other memory and storage technologies.
  3. Persistent memory supports a variety of enablement models.
  4. Persistent memory re-exposes some classic problems.

Rob Dickinson

Rob Dickinson


Rob is a systems architect and software engineer who's never met a programming language he didn't like. At Intel, he's a member of the NVML development team, and is the technical lead for pmemkv, a key/value datastore optimized for persistent memory. Prior to Intel, Rob led development of end-user monitoring products at Quest Software and Dell Software, but won't admit to how many startups it took to get there. Rob lives with his wife, three kids, and snowboard collection in Boulder, Colorado.