I still like to do Folding@Home, but my old GTX 980s are just getting used for day-to-day computing. F@H sits idle. Sorry, Cancer and Parkinson's, you'll just have to wait!
This is the problem. For most of us, we just want good GPUs. But then, there's that "second use" for GPUs that increase the demand for them. It could be Boinc, it could be F@H, or it could be the latest shiny "somethingCoin".
I'd rather let supply and demand work itself out, because I don't think anybody is qualified to tell any of us that our rendering or helping in the search to cure cancer is not important to society. And that's why I won't tell anybody else that their *Coin work is any less important to humanity. None of us has the right to pass that kind of judgment.
So right now there's a run on cards and that's just the way it's gonna be. I know it's painful, because right now the fastest way to make a buck is to buy and sell the cards at inflated prices. Making more cards or offering competitor cards is something that will require investment of time, money, and legal capital. And that's even before the first wafer is foundried.
But in six months, all those shiny new cards could be collecting dust amidst a price crash, with all those Ebay deal-makers losing their shorts in a huge market crash. This is probably a very good reason that nobody is willing to invest billions on new fab designs, plants, or equipment in the current climate. Would YOU be the one to open a new foundary, only to have the US Congress step in and throw its political obesity all over the market, or the US President, with a scribble of his Executive Order pen, possibly ruining your and your stakeholders' investment in the process? No, of course not.
These are the things currently hurting competition from developing. But maybe even in the face of this, we'll still see in a year or two, more GPU chipmakers than just AMD and Nvidia. I prefer to remain optimistic that we could one day see the next competitor to CUDA, just in the same way that Maxtor and Seagate had to deal with SSD technology and in the same way that Intel is currently getting the crap scared (kicked?) out of them by Apple's new M1 chip that does everything just as fast with less heat than the Intel part can do.
Or maybe not. Because politics, fear, and jealousy.
The moral of the story: Be ready for any eventuality. For my part, I'll keep looking for deals on a couple of RTXs for my desktop machine, but for now the GTX 980s are holding up well.