Week 2

Computers have gone from major government and corporate offices to people’s houses.  What lead to this huge leap is technology.  As technology constantly advanced computers were able to be made smaller.  The microprocessor was a hug part of computers being able to be smaller and able to fit into homes.  The microprocessor was developed due to the integrated circuit.  The microprocessor is basically a computer all on one chip.  Instead of having multiple circuits to deal with different things all of these thing can be integrated in the microprocessor.  The microprocessor was developed by a company that is still relevant in computers today, intel.  The microprocessor also dropped the cost of making a computer which was also a huge advancement of placing computers in homes.  Along with Intel, Apple was also key players in making the first personal computer.  Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak developed the first personal computer which was the Apple 1.  Prior to the personal computer being developed micro computers were already invented.  The micro computer required engineers and people with advanced computer knowledge to operate the machine.  Apple made a personal computer that was user friendly that could be operated by the average consumer. Apple and Intel play a huge role into getting computers into consumers homes.  Intel developed the technology to make computers smaller and more cost efficient.  Apple made computers user friendly.  Once Apple made the first pc the rest is history.  Now there are pc’s in almost every household across the country.  These two companies made technological advancements to bring computers into our homes.

5 thoughts on “Week 2

  1. Kailei

    I think that saying “technology” was what made the leap is a bit general. This is only brought up due to the fact that the topic at hand is, in general terms, technology itself. Along with technology becoming more advance and personable, it is those behind the scenes doing the inventing and putting thought behind the actual technological advancements. Although very true, we can go from a more general grasp of technology to more pin-pointed ideas. For example, you had very good points about the microprocessor and how the physicality of the computer being smaller made technology more personable. Without it, having a personal computer would be a hassle and the leap would not have happened so easily. Also, I agree that with such influential characters as Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, the leap was made more seamlessly. Without such aggressive inventors in the industry, the leap would have been a slow advancement.

  2. leichtke

    I agree with the big leap being the result of those who are actually behind the scenes inventing and creating advances. You mentioned that Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak played a large part in placing computers in homes which is very true. I also think it is important to mention Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce. These two created the integrated circuit which helped to lead to the microprocessor which you discussed. Prior to their work, circuits had many problems such as faultiness due to human error in their manufacturing process. In addition, the circuits often had long wires which led to slower electrical conductivity and hence slower computers. It was difficult to make small circuits by hand so there was a limit to how small the circuits could be and how small the computers could be. The integrated circuit that these two created was able to miniaturize circuits which eventually led to smaller computer parts and therefore smaller computers. The manufacturing of these circuits was also automated rather than human made, so there was less error. It was a great step towards personal computers. Therefore, not only are Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak very important figures in the leap in technology, but so were Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce and their creation of the integrated circuits.

  3. vetterk1

    The advancements made in order to make the parts and technology behind computers smaller was the reason that computers were able to progress quickly into efficient machines. These advancements would not have been possible without the help of many great people such as Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce, as mentioned by leicktke. It was because of the visions of inventors such as Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak that made it possible for every household to own a personal computer and be capable of using it. However, without an interested audience to market to, the personal computer would have failed to become a common household item. Even if the supply for the advanced technology was available, without the demand, personal computers would not be around today. I think it is important not to overlook society’s role in this particular advancement. Without hobbyist groups such as the Homebrew Computer Club, the idea of the personal computer may not have ever become a popular one.

  4. phelanro

    I agree that saying technology was a major influence in the leap, however I do not think it was the only leap. The mental perceptions of computers to the public went hand in hand with the technology advances. Without the changes in mental perception, there would not have been the drive to make personal computers. I agree with vetterk1 when they said that without the interest audience the computer would not have become a household item. It is important to realize the contributions of Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in the technology aspect, but it also important to acknowledge the Homebrew Computer Club’s involvement as well.

    Leichtke brought up a good point about how the people who invented the integrated circuit helped make the personal computer possible. It is not only important to acknowledge the people who worked on the computer as a whole, but also the people who worked on the individual parts.

  5. staalrya

    I enjoyed reading your post. I do agree with you that technology was one of the main reasons why the transition from massive computers that filled rooms up, to the creation of the desktop computer happened. Microprocessors were vital for the modern computer we know today (and that I am typing on currently). However, not only were microprocessors important, but the invention of Transistors, which I noticed you left out of your post mostly.

    Transistors filled the void of what Vacuum tubes used to. They were essentially solid state vacuum tubes. Solid states being ‘no moving parts’, transistors were highly effective and power saving. Vacuum tubes were quite large, and made computers less efficient, energy wise and computing wise due to their limitations. The combination of transistors and microprocessor technology eventually led to the development of the Altair 8800, and then software development which we now know as Microsoft Windows and Apple OSX.

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