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July 1958: Kilby Conceives the Integrated Circuit

If you’re looking for a starting point for Moore’s Law, this is probably it

3 min read
Photo: Fritz Goro/The Life Picture Collection/Getty Images
Photo: Fritz Goro/The Life Picture Collection/Getty Images

imgPhoto: Fritz Goro/The Life Picture Collection/Getty Images

In 1958, 11 years after Bell Labsreinvented the transistor, it became clear that semiconductors would be able to conquer the electronics market only if they could be greatly miniaturized. There wasn’t much progress to be made by hand soldering separate components into circuits, but as is often the case, the solution came just when it was needed.

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The Transistor at 75

The past, present, and future of the modern world’s most important invention

2 min read
A photo of a birthday cake with 75 written on it.
Lisa Sheehan

Seventy-five years is a long time. It’s so long that most of us don’t remember a time before the transistor, and long enough for many engineers to have devoted entire careers to its use and development. In honor of this most important of technological achievements, this issue’s package of articles explores the transistor’s historical journey and potential future.

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