QoS was always the hook that people liked early on with SolidFire. Glad it's working out for you. I know there's a lot of early interest in the HCI version. We may end up starting there with them. We'll see...
What we hear is that SATA isn't worth investing in and most vendors see it going away entirely in the client space first, within the next year or two. NVMe will be the clear leader in all new client systems going forward. This includes to a lesser extent IoT devices as well. On the enterprise side, we'll probably see the same thing on a slightly slower cadence.
This is an interesting concept and surprisingly to me, that article got a ton of reads. Acceleration cards have a checkered past though, pretty difficult to get just right, especially for a mass audience.
The HDD economics are swinging the wrong way. We're already seeing Seagate starting to fall, will be interesting to see what happens in the HDD space the next year or two. Move will primarily be toward 3.5" capacity...but even that is a long term loser.
The demand is outstripping supply at the moment...well, really for the last 18 months or so. All the suppliers and buyers are saying the same thing. There's just not enough NAND production to go around. These die changes are critical to being able to hit the capacity targets the market expects.
Most people can get by with 256GB, especially with cloud storage for less used files. And the question isn't dumb, sizing your drive is an important decision. You need to count up what you have no and see if 256 is enough, though if you have budget, there's not much downside to going up to a 512GB.