The Associated Press reports that Intel has redesigned the transistor thereby enabling it to power faster computers:
Intel Corp. said Wednesday that it has redesigned the electronic switches on its chips so that computers can keep getting cheaper and more powerful.
The switches, known as transistors, have typically been flat. By adding a third dimension — “fins” that jut up from the base — Intel will be able to make the transistors and chips smaller. Think of how skyscrapers address the need for more office space when land is scarce.
The company said the new structure will let chips run on less power. That gives Intel its best shot yet at cracking the growing markets for chips used in smartphones and tablet computers. Intel has been weak there because its current chips use too much power.
A transistor is a semiconductor device used to amplify and switch electronic signals. It is made of a solid piece of semiconductor material, with at least three terminals for connection to an external circuit. A voltage or current applied to one pair of the transistor’s terminals changes the current flowing through another pair of terminals. Because the controlled (output) power can be much more than the controlling (input) power, the transistor provides amplification of a signal. Today, some transistors are packaged individually, but many more are found embedded in integrated circuits. (wikipedia)
Transistor is the engine of modern economy. It is the building block of microprocessors. If it should advance as Intel stated, it will offer a new era in computing. Intel could be changing the game with a transistor that can consume lesser power. This will help them in the overall strategy of moving into mobility computing.
Oh yes, Moore’s Law stays alive. And for every 18 months, the number of transistors will double in a die and cheap complexity will grow even when prices are coming down.
Transistors are at the center of the digital universe. They’re the workhorses of modern electronics, tiny on/off switches that regulate electric current. They’re to computers what synapses are to the human nervous system.
Without those mosfets, the modern economy will not exist. Congratulations Intel.