John BardeenJohn Bardeen


It was the tiny, reliable electronic component called a transistor that enabled the marriage of computers and communication more than any other single development. In 1947, John Bardeen, Walter Brattain, and William Shockley invented the transistor, and it gradually replaced the bulky, fragile vacuum tubes that had been amplifying and switching signals.

The first transistor

Today's transistor is hardly bigger than a ring-thimble.Today's transistor is hardly bigger than a ring-thimble.


Walter BrattainWalter Brattain

The transistor and the subsequent integrated circuits (that contains millions of transistors) served as the foundation for the development of modern electronics. By 1954, the wildly popular transistor radio was introduced, and by 1958, an American electrical engineer, Seymour Cray developed a transistorized computer.

William ShockleyWilliam Shockley

Did you know?

Today (in 2010), IBM's z196 processor is the fastest one all over the world. The 5.2 GHz CPU executes 50 billion operations in one second.