Sunday, November 9, 2008

Inside Intel

Ok, so while we were able to go inside the Intel building, it was just through their museum.
The museum is FREE which is great and it was interesting but of course very much about the history of Intel.

My favorite part of the museum was ARTI- a robot that you could ask specific questions (on a list) and he would answer you. He was quite entertaining with his "serious" answers.
I was sure glad that William was with me to explain how computers- particularly the Intel processor-worked. This demonstration shows how a transistor works, with opening and closing gates and by manipulating which gates are open, you can actually spell words (Like "Hi Cheryl" as William did).
Their videos and computer interactive stations were great- very insightful, especially showing how there is like 50 steps in making a chip. Intel has kept up Moore's law, that they can double the number of transistors on a chip every two years. They had maxed out the impact of silicone and so they have used other combinations to make the processor more effective. They also had a sample of their clean room where they have to wear the bunny suits that take about 15 minutes the first time you put them on (we didn't since they weren't so "clean" with everyone else putting them on). All in all, it was a good way to spend a rainy Saturday afternoon :-)

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