More meaningful invention


r.j.s

Moderator emeritus
Mar 7, 2007
14,927
35
Texas
Yeah, I'd say the IC engine as well. I think the distances we traveled with the IC really led to the need for the transistor in some really indirect way.
 

Scepticalscribe

macrumors Sandy Bridge
Jul 29, 2008
46,554
31,266
The Far Horizon
Yeah, I'd go for the transistor as well. A marvel of miniaturization, compression and portability, whereas one might argue that the internal combustion stalled (design wise) for a long time.

Cheers
 

r1ch4rd

macrumors 6502a
Aug 5, 2005
980
1
Manchester UK
My vote goes for the transistor. Think of all the things it has helped to achieve.. mapping the human genome is one example.
 

7on

macrumors 601
Nov 9, 2003
4,940
0
Dress Rosa
The transistor.

The IC Engine, if never invented, would have been replaced with an electrical one.
 

DigiCatRedux

macrumors member
Aug 25, 2008
98
0
Somewhere in New England, USA.
The transistor and the evolution into Jack Kilby's "Monolithic Integrated Circuit" I think was a more meaningful invention than the internal combustion engine.
It's descendants have changed the way we view, communicate, interact and understand the world & universe - not to say the IC engine wasn't a technical achievement in its own right... but as far as progress goes, the IC engine is still used primarily as a means of propulsion for vehicles or as generators.

The Microchip however, has become a vital part of modern life - found everywhere, and its uses still being discovered and designs improved upon.

So my vote is for the Transistor - changing the way we do things since 1947.
:)
 

foidulus

macrumors 6502a
Jan 15, 2007
904
1
Isn't this kind of like arguing which is more delicious, hamburgers or ice cream? I mean, yes they are both foods(and in this case inventions), but one is not really a substitute for the other. We are all blessed(and/or cursed depending on your view point) to have both available to us.
 

thesurgeon

macrumors newbie
Sep 14, 2008
1
0
Singapore
Transistor is good IC is better

Transistor. No contest. Internal combustion engines are waaay over hyped.
I just heard that the IC is 50 years old. Yes the transistor is an important invention. And people like Jack Kilby planted the seeds for it to evolve with the IC he invented at the Texas lab in 1958.

Just a fews days back I dismantled an old 1974 Sony TV Camera. It weights 19Kg and is loaded with lots of transistors and a little ics. Would thermionic valves have created this beauty back in 1974?

Think again, what ICs have done to the camera - just look at the Sony Handycam now.

You can gawked at the internals of the 1974 Sony TV Studio Camera here ==

http://www.home-electronics-review.blogspot.com