For sixty years, Intel made the best chips in the world. As of 2020, they no longer do – and a company you’ve likely never heard of now holds the chip-making crown.
One of the key events reported in this episode concerns the firing of Intel Chief Engineering Officer Murthy Renduchintala after the chip maker announced delays in development of its all-important 7-nanometer semiconductors.
Not long after that, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich stepped down.
More than 60 years ago, integrated circuits created a revolution in electronics that transformed the entire world. How are chips made? And why do we keep getting better at making them?
The ALTAIR 8800 was a landmark in computing – the first ‘microcomputer’, built around Intel’s breakthrough 8080 microprocessor. I remember it from the cover of Popular Electronics:
You could buy the ALTAIR 8800 in kit form, or fully assembled:
All of which led Paul Allen and Bill Gates to write ALTAIR BASIC, and sell it through their new company: MICROSOFT.
Over a billion seconds ago, sci-fi legend Vernor Vinge conceived of a “Technological Singularity”, when our machines outthink us. Should we worry?
Be sure to read Vernor’s 1993 paper, “The Coming Technological Singularity: How to Survive in the Post-Human Era” – it’s linked here.