MOORE'S LAW - just how densely can you pack circuit components together?

"Cramming more components onto integrated circuits" [ Moore's Law ]

New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, Inc. 1965. First Edition. Red buckram ex-library binding, properly discarded, containing issues Jan 11 through April 19th 1965. 8 3/4 x 11 1/4 inches. The individual issue covers (often missing in library bindings) are present, some with paper mailing labels. Occasional library markings (stamps on front issue covers, "This book does not circulate" on the front and rear flyleaves, library stamp to page edges). Unusually clean library binding with "ELECTRONICS" and "38 | Jan-Apr | 1965" being the only spine markings. Closely trimmed when the library bound these up, but with no loss of text. The March 8, 1965 issue has edge dampstaining. The April 19th issue containing the article by Moore is clean. Paper lightly browned throughout (as normal). Very Good. Cloth. [27936]

The Moore's law article is found on pages 114-117 in Electronics, April 1965.

"At Fairchild Semiconductor, his seminal Silicon Valley startup, [ Gordon E. ] Moore—a young chemist turned electronics entrepreneur—had the defining insight: silicon transistors, and microchips made of them, could make electronics profoundly cheap and immensely powerful. Microchips could double in power, then redouble again in clockwork fashion. History has borne out this insight, which we now call “Moore's Law”, and Moore himself, having recognized it, worked endlessly to realize his vision. With Moore's technological leadership at Fairchild and then at his second start-up, the Intel Corporation, the law has held for fifty years. The result is profound: from the days of enormous, clunky computers of limited capability to our new era, in which computers are placed everywhere from inside of our bodies to the surface of Mars." (from Moore's Law, The Life of Gordon Moore, Silicon Valley's Quiet Revolutionary)

"Moore's Law refers to Moore's perception that the number of transistors on a microchip doubles every two years,[even] though the cost of computers is halved. Moore's Law states that we can expect the speed and capability of our computers to increase every couple of years, and we will pay less for them. Another tenet of Moore's Law asserts that this growth is exponential...Gordon Moore did not call his observation "Moore's Law," nor did he set out to create a "law." Moore made that statement based on noticing emerging trends in chip manufacturing at Intel. Eventually, Moore's insight became a prediction, which in turn became the golden rule known as Moore's Law...In the decades that followed Gordon Moore's original observation, Moore's Law guided the semiconductor industry in long-term planning and setting targets for research and development (R&D). Moore's Law has been a driving force of technological and social change, productivity, and economic growth that are hallmarks of the late-twentieth and early twenty-first centuries." (investopedia)

We offer here the original article by Moore that started it all. Rare enough that on the 50th anniversary even computer giant Intel didn't have a copy in their archive, this is the first copy we've owned in 20 years. The article was prescient in the same way that Vannevar Bush's predictions of different computer technologies was in the Atlantic Monthly. In 1965, the computer and chip technology was just shifting from the transistor to integrated circuits. To be able to predict where it was going, with an accuracy that 50 years later is still true, was remarkable.


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