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World’s First Microchip Auction Failed to Meet Reserve



/ 2 years ago

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A few days ago we brought you news that the worlds first microchip was going up for auction, unfortunately for those involved it looks like this historic piece of hardware didn’t meet its reserve. The handmade chip was created by Jack Kilbe in 1958 at Texas Instruments, earning Kilby a Nobel Prize for his efforts and it really is one of the corner stones of everything we have come to know and love about modern computing.

Made with germanium wafer, gold wiring and mounted on a glass plate, the circuit is a far cry from the advanced fabrication processes used in the kind of chips used in our modern electronic devices, but the chip was still expected to fetch in the region of $1-2 million at this weeks auction.

The chip was up for sale along side a second prototype, which used silicon substrate, as well as a written statement of Kilbys which described the process of the invention, which was dated 1964. Christie’s auction house estimated the lot would reach at least $1 million, going up to around $2 million, but bidding only reached as high as $850,000, so for now it is unclear what will happen with the iconic hardware.

Thank you NBC for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of NBC.


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