Kilby Invented Transistor While Flouting Mandated Summer Vacation

(p. A15) Sixty years. But how much longer? In 1958 Jack St. Clair Kilby–from Great Bend, Kan.–created one of the greatest inventions, a great bend, in the history of mankind. Kilby recently had started at Texas Instruments as an electrical engineer. Most everyone left on a mandated summer break, but he stayed in the lab and worked on combining a transistor, capacitor and three resistors on a single piece of germanium. On Sept. 12, he showed his boss his integrated circuit. At a half-inch long and not very wide, it had ugly wires sticking out, resembling an upside-down cockroach glued to a glass slide.
. . .
Brace yourself. When Moore’s Law finally gives up the ghost, productivity and economic growth will roll over too–unless. The world needs another Great Bend, another Kilbyesque warp in the cosmos, to drive the economy.
. . .
Let’s hope the next Jack Kilby skipped this summer’s vacation.

For the full commentary, see:
Kessler, Andy. “INSIDE VIEW; The Chip That Changed the World; Jack Kilby built the first integrated circuit 60 years ago. We need a new Moore’s Law.” The Wall Street Journal (Monday, Aug. 27, 2018): A15.
(Note: ellipses added.)
(Note: the online version of the commentary has the date Aug. 26, 2018.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.