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The large scale composition of solid devices which comprise the hardware structure of modern computers are subject to the second law of thermodynamics as are all other physical objects.

Assuming the complete avoidance of bugs, viruses and inefficient CPU handling of applications on my laptop, is it accurate to conclude that my computer gets inevitably slower (to execute specific tasks such as, say, addition of numbers) with time purely due to the inefficiency of degrading solid state transistors? Since (as far as I understand) quantum computers will also employ such solid state physics, will they also inevitably perform progressively slower over time?

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    $\begingroup$ On the one hand yes, what you are saying is true. On the other hand it is important to bare in mind that this is just an elaborate way of saying "stuff breaks over time (computer chips included)" $\endgroup$ – By Symmetry Mar 6 at 20:43
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    $\begingroup$ 1. To my knowledge, there is no such thing as "the principle of entropy". Perhaps you're referring to the Second Law of Thermodynamics? Please clarify what you mean here. 2. Why do you think an IC would grow slower rather than become completely inoperative suddenly due to some time-dependent failure mode (e.g., diffusion, creep, electromigration)? $\endgroup$ – Chemomechanics Mar 6 at 21:05
  • $\begingroup$ @BySymmetry I'm trying to ascertain the idea that it would indeed be the break-down of solid-state transistors that make a computer inevitably slower in performance over time. $\endgroup$ – kbakshi314 Mar 6 at 21:29
  • $\begingroup$ @Chemomechanics I've edited the title and question to replace the phrase 'principle of entropy' with 'second law of thermodynamics'. If we assume that an IC does not degrade in performance (in terms of performance of the logic gates) but instead stops working entirely, then the idea that solid-state device degradation causes performance slow-down in computers is wrong. The question is an attempt to ascertain this idea. $\endgroup$ – kbakshi314 Mar 6 at 21:32
  • $\begingroup$ the failure mechanism of a transistor circuit is not a simple one, especially when in a single crystal you may have mullions of them $\endgroup$ – hyportnex Mar 7 at 18:38