How Transistors Changed the World

Now that we’re in the Information Age, electronic devices are indispensable to us. But what is the revolutionary invention that created all of these? The answer, my friend, is the transistor.


Civilizations have thrived with their revolutionary inventions. Fire, calculus, and even the simplest of the wheel were all necessary for the advancement of human civilization. Now that we’re in the Information Age, electronic devices are indispensable to us. Everything from mobile phones, tablets, computers, and even your house that’s linked to a smart system, you name it. But what is the revolutionary invention that created all of these? The answer, my friend, is the transistor.

Here’s a video from Real Engineering that explains the wonders of how the transistor started and revolutionized the age of computers.

Source: YouTube, Real Engineering

Transistors, however, did not just appear out of nowhere. It was based off of a previous technology that was already available at that time, the vacuum tube. Their primary use, at the time of their inception, was to provide a way to toggle an on and off ‘switch’ in a device. This is how binary logic was integrated into our devices today.

Though both of these inventions did the same thing, they varied greatly in size, and efficiency. A standard vacuum tube can span several inches long while a transistor was only a few millimeters, which then shrunk into nanometers, which is what our devices use today. This made transistors more reliable and efficient to use as they also proved more durable than their predecessor. Take for example the ENIAC computer, it used vacuum tubes needed 150 kilowatts in order to operate.

We cannot state how important transistors are to this day and we don’t even know if they’re still going to be there in the near future. They might be set aside like the all-important vacuum tube of the past once mankind has created a modern alternative. So, let’s take this time to look back at the wonders of the invention that changed the modern era. Transistors might be getting smaller and smaller, but they’re still not gone for good.

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Cielo Santos

Engineer. Writer. Artist. Gamer. Musician. She dreams of building a time machine and help kittens take over the world. Is secretly the pink power ranger in real life.

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How Transistors Changed the World

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