How have computers become so fast?

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Every material on the planet has the same basic building blocks, atoms, which can be used to characterize those materials. These characterizations come in three forms type, arrangement, and connectedness. The study of materials has led humanity to the silicon age, the construction of ever faster and more powerful computers and eventually to the ultimate coalescence of man and machine and the creation of artificial intelligence. How have computers become so advanced that we can consider things like artificial intelligence? To delve into the concept of artificial intelligence would be to put the cart before the horse. How have computers come to where they are? What makes them possible? What are they made of? Now there we go, step one the microchip. A microchip is a self-contained electrical circuit on a wafer of silicon. Why silicon? All materials have three characterizations specific to them. All materials are made of atoms, the atoms are arranged in a manner particular to each material and the atoms of each material bond in a definitive manner. A method of thinking about this is compare a pile of lose carbon atoms also known as coal. It is brittle, highly flammable and black. Now take those exact same carbon atoms and make them line up and bond electron to electron in a perfect grid. Diamonds are one of the hardest substances on earth, so perfectly clear they refract light, and do not burn. When building circuits scientists look for very unique properties for the substrate of the circuit. In this case a low conductivity to promote proper electron flow along a designed pathway, elemental resistance to prohibit deterioration, and the ability to reproduce the material flawlessly and inexpensively. Enter silicon. Scientists discove... ... middle of paper ... ...off their type, arrangement and connectedness until we get where we need to be and produce the material perfect for the task at hand. Works Cited Berkeley Ph.D., I. (1997). What is Artificial Intelligence? Retrieved from http://www.ucs.louisiana.edu/~isb9112/dept/phil341/wisai/WhatisAI.html Dow Corning Inc. (2004). Silicones: Electronics Changing the Picture of Electronics Worldwide Retrieved from https://www.dowcorning.com/vi_VN/content/vietnam/ces_electronics.pdf Intel Corporation. (2014). Moore's law and intel innovation. Retrieved from http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/history/museum-gordon-moore-law.html Nobel Media AB (2003). The History of the Integrated Circuit Retrieved from http://www.nobelprize.org/educational/physics/integrated_circuit/history/ Trefil, J., & Hazen, R. M. (2013). The sciences: An integrated approach. (7th ed.). John Wiley & Sons.

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