a question I`d explore to try and look for

July 7, 2021, 10:42 pm
a question I`d explore to try and look for
a question Id explore to try and look for an interesting answer to this, which probably might end up too obscure to fulfill the original query but would still be interesting to know: which material innovations were most significant in allowing for the ubiquity of smartphones?

CMOS optical sensors. They made cheap digital cameras possible, and that is to my mind the sine qua non of the smartphone, and the post-smartphone society, as we know it.

batteries, miniaturized antennas, cellular tower networks (+ band multiplexing for data), routing and switching algorithms, the internet (obvi)

Yeah, the transition from those big honkin vaccum tube transistors to silicon transistors cut down device size significantly. Smaller transistor == more transistors per area == more power

incidentally this is my favorite anecdote about lasers: the guy who invented them (one of the guys) basically did it because he thought it would be cool

Caveat: I studied some semiconductor manufacturing but never did anything practical or professionally with it, and was a mediocre student More like laser printing accuracy, so better lenses and more accurate ways to aim them, rather than better silicon, I think

Professor Goodenough. lol.

another bottleneck is computing power basically a function of transistors silicon, right? shipping containers/containerization

Answering your question thinking about how smartphones are basically big batteries with screens attached. That was a bold move. So obvious now, but when engineers at Blackberry first heard about the iPhone, they thought it was a joke. They *knew* it was an impossible device.

the trans age (joking... but only somewhat, we kinda are just guests in Sophie Wilson`s and Wendy Carlos` world) I like The Rare Earth Age.

cpu size Small batteries, capacitive touch sensors, GPS.

one bottleneck is batteries. iPhones use lithium ion batteries. Prototypes throughout 70s, 80s. Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 2019 every increasing transistor count touchscreens are not essential, as blackberry proved. we would still have smartphones without them lithium ion batteries otoh... power is pretty important to so yeah, powerful miniature computers and powerful miniature batteries

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