Summary descriptions of the founding and early activities of companies and organizations included on the Timeline pages are provided alphabetically below. Where available revenue data for the year 2006 is provided as a measure of comparative size. Consult their corporate websites for most recent financial data and information on current products and strategies.
Actel Corporation was founded by Esmat Hamdy and Amr Mohsen in Mountain View, California in 1985 to produce field programmable gate array integrated circuits and CAD development tools using anti-fuse and flash EPROM technologies. The company remains headquartered in Mountain View. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $190.5 million.
Advanced Memory Systems (AMS)
Advanced Memory Systems, Inc. was founded in Santa Clara County, California in 1968 to produce bipolar and MOS memory devices and complete memory systems. In 1969 AMS introduced one of the first 1K DRAMs. Founders included D, Berding (IBM), B. Dickson (Motorola), C. Fa (Collins), J. Larkin (Fairchild) and R. Lloyd (IBM). The company merged with Intersil, Inc. in 1976.
Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)
Advanced Micro Devices, Inc was founded in Sunnyvale, California in 1969 by eight Fairchild employees (F. Botte, J. Carey, J. Giles, J. Gifford. J. Sanders, S. Simonsen, L. Stegner, E. Turney) to produce bipolar TTL MSI and linear integrated circuits. The company became a major supplier of MOS memory and microprocessor devices in the 1980s. AMD and is headquartered in Sunnyvale. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $ 5.649 billion.
Altera Corporation was founded in San Jose, California in 1983 by Robert Hartmann (Fairchild) Michael Magranet (Fairchild), Paul Newhagen (Fairchild), and Jim Sansbury (HP) to produce electrically erasable programmable logic (EPLD) integrated circuits and design development tools. The Company is headquartered in San Jose, CA. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $1.26 billion.
Amelco Semiconductor was founded in 1961 in Mountain View, California by Fairchild founders Jean Hoerni, Eugene Kleiner, Jay Last, and Sheldon Roberts. With financing from Teledyne Corporation arranged by Arthur Rock, the plan was to build monolithic integrated circuits in support of Teledyne’s military business. As the market took longer to develop than anticipated, product development was expanded to include a broad line of discrete devices and hybrid circuits for military and aerospace applications. Later renamed Teledyne Semiconductor, the company operated as a unit of Teledyne Components before being spun out in 1993 as Telcom Semiconductor, Inc. Telcom was acquired by Microchip in 2000.
American Micro Systems (AMI)
American Micro Systems, Inc. was founded in 1966 in Santa Clara, California by four Philco-Ford Microelectronics (formerly General Microelectronics) employees (H. Bobb, V. Peterson, W. Vallandighan, W. Wheeler) to produce MOS integrated circuits. In the 1970s AMI was a leading supplier of custom circuits (ASICs). Today, known as AMI Semiconductor (AMIS), the company is headquartered in Pocatello, Idaho and focuses on integrated mixed-signal products. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $606 million.
American Telephone and Telegraph (AT&T)
Founded in 1885 as American Telephone and Telegraph Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Bell Telephone Company, its nationwide telephone service made it the largest corporation in America at one time. Divesting its local operating companies by court order in 1984, AT&T focused on research (Bell Telephone Laboratories), equipment manufacturing (Western Electric) and long distance telephone services. In 1996, the corporation split into three independent companies; telecommunications (AT&T) manufacturing (Lucent Technologies) and computers (NCR). In 2005, the telecommunications business merged with SBC, itself a merger of some of the original AT&T operating companies. Lucent spun-off the semiconductor operations as Agere in 2002. Agere merged with LSI Logic to form LSI Corporation in 2006.
Analog Devices (ADI)
Analog Devices, Inc. was founded by Matthew Lorber and Ray Stata in 1965 in Cambridge, MA to produce modular precision operational amplifiers. In 1969 the company entered the semiconductor market by funding and later acquiring analog startup Nova Devices and by purchasing Precision Monolithics of Santa Clara, CA in 1990. Today ADI is a major supplier of analog, mixed-signal, and DSP products based in Norwood. MA. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $2.57 billion.
Apple Computer, Inc. was founded by Steve Jobs, Ron Wayne, and Steve Wozniak in April 1976 in Los Altos, CA. Through innovative design, broad independent-developer software support, and strong retail marketing programs, Apple emerged as the most successful of the early personal computer manufacturers. Renamed simply Apple, Inc., today the company is a supplier of high-technology “digital lifestyle” consumer products based in Cupertino, CA. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $19.3 billion.
Applied Materials Technology (AMT)
Applied Materials, Inc. was founded in 1967 by Mike McNeily and others in Santa Clara, CA to develop chemical vapor deposition (CVD) semiconductor manufacturing equipment. The company was a pioneer in offering a full range of equipment and process technology solutions for wafer fabrication for semiconductor chips, flat panels, solar photovoltaic cells, flexible electronics and energy efficient glass. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $9.17 billion.
Atari, Inc. was founded with an investment of $250 by Nolan Busnell and Ted Dabney on June 27th, 1972 in the Santa Clara Valley, CA to develop electronic games inspired by the computer-based Space Wars. Intended as a learning project for design engineer Al Alcorn, the paddle game Pong became blockbuster hit and launched Atari as one of the most successful early video game, console, and personal computer manufacturers. To finance expansion, Atari was sold to Warner Communications in 1976. The company changed hands several times before ceasing operations in 1996. The brand name is currently owned by Atari Interactive.
The Autonetics Division of North American Aviation, Inc. was established in 1957 to develop aerospace guidance systems in Anaheim, CA. Important projects included an all-solid-state computer for the Navaho missile guidance system in 1955 and several generations of digital flight control systems for the Minuteman ICBM programs. The company was purchased by Rockwell International in 1967 and operated as North American Rockwell.
Established by Dr. Arnold O. Beckman in 1934, Beckman Instruments introduced its first commercial product, a pH Meter, in 1935 and prospered as a supplier of analytical laboratory equipment. Beckman funded William Shockley’s Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory in Mountain View, CA as a division of the company in 1955 and sold the profitless business to Clevite in 1960. As Beckman Coulter, Inc., today the company is a manufacturer of biomedical testing systems and supplies based in Fullerton, CA with fiscal year 2006 revenue of $2.5 billion.
Bell Telephone Laboratories (BTL)
Founded in New York City in 1925 as the research arm of American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T), beginning in the 1930’s Bell Telephone Laboratories expanded into multiple locations in New Jersey. The Bell Labs R&D community has made seminal scientific discoveries, created new technologies, and built communication systems around the world. Developed in 1947, as a replacement for vacuum tubes and mechanical relays, the transistor revolutionized the electronics world. Other semiconductor innovations followed, including the silicon transistor, the solar cell, and the laser. AT&T spun off Bell Labs in 1996, along with most of its equipment-manufacturing business, into a new company named Lucent Technologies. In 2006 Lucent merged with Alcatel.
Bowmar Instrument Corp. was founded in Fort Wayne, IA in 1951 by Edward and Joan White and grew as a supplier of light emitting diode (LED) semiconductor displays. The company expanded into the production of handheld calculators in 1971. Selling under its own brand name – the Bomar Brain – and private label manufacture for Craig, Sears, and others, in the mid-1970s Bomar was one of the world’s largest suppliers. A casualty of the calculator price wars, the company exited the business in 1976 to concentrate on government and industrial contracts.
Founded in Tucson, AZ by Robert Page Burr and Thomas R. Brown, Jr. in 1956, Burr-Brown Corporation manufactured precision analog module and board-level products. The company grew into a supplier of specialized high-performance analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits before its acquisition by Texas Instruments in September 2000.
Founded in St. Louis, Missouri in 1885 by William Seward Burroughs, inventor of the first workable adding and listing machine, the Burroughs Adding Machine Company moved its headquarters to Detroit in 1905 and became a large supplier of office accounting equipment. Renamed Burroughs Corporation, the company entered the computer business by purchasing Electrodata Corporation of California in 1956 and created many highly regarded computer systems in the 1960s and 1970s. The company merged with Sperry Rand, the maker of Univac computers, to form Unisys in 1986. Based in Blue Bell, PA Unisys is a supplier of IT services with fiscal year 2006 revenue of $ 5.76 billion.
Nippon Calculating Machine Corporation was founded in Osaka, Japan in 1928 and changed the name to Business Computer Corporation, better known as Busicom Corp. in 1967. The company entered the electronic calculator market in 1971 after engaging with Mostek to design a chip for a handheld machine and with Intel for a family of chips for a business model. Although the latter project led to the development of Intel’s first microprocessor family, Busicom became the first major Japanese calculator company to go out of business in 1974.
Cadence Design Systems, Inc is an electronic design automation (EDA) software and engineering services company founded in 1987 by the merger of Solomon Design Automation Systems (SDA) and ECAD, Inc. With headquarters in San Jose, California, Cadence is currently the largest supplier of electronic design software tools for chips and printed circuit boards. Fiscal 2006 revenue was $1.52 billion.
Clevite Corporation of Cleveland, Ohio entered the semiconductor market in 1953 by purchasing Transistor Products Inc. an early manufacturer of point-contact devices located near Boston, MA. Under the name Clevite Transistor Products (CTP), the company became a major producer of germanium power transistors. In the early 1960s Clevite developed a number of custom ICs for the Minuteman missile and purchased Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory from Beckman. ITT acquired Clevite in 1965.
George Cogar, one of the founders of Mohawk Data Sciences, Utica, NY, formed Cogar Corporation in Wappinger’s Falls, NY in January 1968. He recruited Robert Markle, Ray Pecararo, and Howard Geller, all senior managers from the IBM, East Fishkill semiconductor facility, to develop semiconductor memory devices to be sold as memory cards and complete systems to computer manufacturers who did not have access to advanced semiconductor processes. Although the company hired more than 60 experienced engineers from IBM and held a successful, high-profile IPO in 1969, the business failed and closed in April 1972.
Commodore Business Machines began as a typewriter sales and repair operation in the Bronx in the 1950’s by Auschwitz survivor Jack Tramiel. He moved to Toronto and in 1969 expanded the business into pocket calculators based on a Bowmar LED displays and Texas Instruments ICs. Commodore purchased microprocessor producer MOS Technology in 1976 and used their products to design the popular PET and Commodore 64 personal computers at a division in Cupertino, CA. Commodore declared bankruptcy in 1994.
Arthur Collins founded Collins Radio Company in 1933 in Cedar Rapids, IA to produce radio equipment. By the 1960’s the company was manufacturer of broadcast radio transmitters and avionics instruments for military and commercial markets at which time it became an important purchaser of SUHL TTL from Sylvania. Collins was purchased by Rockwell International in 1973.
Compagnie des Freins et Signaux
Compagnie de Freins et Signaux was established as a subsidiary of the Westinghouse European Brake Company in the 1880s. After WW II, the operation recruited German scientists Herbert Mataré and Heinrich Welker to work in an R&D unit to support the manufacture of germanium rectifiers for telecommunications and military electronics near Paris. Here Mataré and Welker independently invented and patented a point contact device called a transistron in 1948.
Control Data Corporation (CDC)
Control Data Corporation was founded in Minneapolis, MN in 1957 by engineers, including William Norris and Seymour Cray, from a Univac division (originally Engineering Research Associates) in St. Paul, Minnesota. CDC became famous as a supplier of very large and powerful scientific computing systems, many of which were designed by Cray and his associates, until he left to form his own computer company, Cray Research, in 1972. As the demand for high performance mainframe machines declined, CDC suffered financial problems and was purchased by data mining firm Syntegra in 1999.
Computer architect Seymour Cray left CDC in 1971 to found Cray Research in Chippewa Falls, WI with business headquarters in Minneapolis, MN to design and build the world's highest performance supercomputers in 1972. On its introduction in 1976, the Cray-1 established a new standard in supercomputing, and the Cray-2 system, introduced in 1985, continued the company’s performance leadership. Cray engineers pioneered the application of the highest speed semiconductor logic and memory devices of the times, including ECL and Gallium Arsenide technologies. Cray Research merged with SGI (Silicon Graphics, Inc.) in February 1996.
Cypress Semiconductor Corporation was founded in 1982 by T. J. Rogers and Lowell Turriff from AMD to develop high-performance SRAM and logic ICs using CMOS technology. Based in San Jose, CA, today the company produces a wide range of devices for data communications, telecommunications, personal computer, and military systems markets. Fiscal 2006 revenue was $1.1 billion.
David W. Mann
The David W. Mann Company manufactured precision measuring instruments and manufacturing equipment in Lincoln, MA. A pioneer in photolithographic technology for the semiconductor industry, the company was sold to GCA Corporation in 1959. Burton H. Wheeler, Jr. was appointed general manager of the Mann Products Division and, later, an executive vice president of GCA. In 1961 the division produced the first commercial photorepeater for mask making and in 1978 introduced DSW (Direct Step on Wafer) technology that is still used to day.
Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC)
Digital Equipment Corporation was founded in Maynard, MA 1957 by engineers Ken Olsen and Harlan Anderson from MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory and financed by pioneer venture capitalist Georges Doriot’s American Research and Development Corporation. (AR&D). Digital’s first products, transistorized logic modules, were used to build the PDP-1 (Programmable Data Processor), the company’s first computer. Later PDP and VAX products were among the most popular minicomputers for engineering and scientific applications in the 1970s and 1980s when Digital was the second-largest computer manufacturer in the world, with over 100,000 employees. DEC was acquired by Compaq in June 1998, which subsequently merged with Hewlett-Packard in May 2002.
E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company was founded in July 1802 as a gun powder mill near Wilmington, DE. DuPont is one of the world's largest chemical companies with fiscal 2006 revenue above $27 billion and has been involved in many business segments related to the electronics industry, including bulk materials, masks, sensors, and process chemicals. In the 1950s the company invested in the development of high-purity "semiconductor-grade" silicon and was an important supplier of material to both Bell Labs and Texas Instruments’ early transistor operations.
Located on Arques Avenue in Sunnyvale, CA, Davis and Wilder Industries manufactured “some of the best” bell-jar vacuum deposition evaporators for Silicon Valley semiconductor companies and research laboratories in the mid-1960s. The company was still producing e-beam evaporators in 2001.
Electrodata Corporation of Pasadena, CA introduced the Datatron vacuum-tube-based digital computer in August 1954. The company was purchased by Burroughs Corporation in 1956. As the Burroughs 205 Central Computer, the machine sold for $135,000 and was used for purposes ranging from research at NASA Ames to record management at General Insurance, although it is most familiar to the public for its role in the 1960s Batman TV Series.
Electroglas was founded in 1960 by Art Lasch of Fairchild Semiconductor as Specialty Products, a producer of glass capillary tubes containing gold wires used for bonding onto transistor chips. Beginning in 1964 under the name Electroglas, the company pioneered the commercial market for probing equipment used for making electrical contact with semiconductor wafers for testing prior to packaging. Headquartered in San Jose, CA fiscal 2006 revenue was $44.4 million.
Founded as McMullen Associates by Jim McMullen with E. Gregory, E. Stephenson, D. and Stiefbold from MOS pioneer General Microelectronics plus J. Nicklas and S. Nissim from Bunker Ramo Corporation in 1967. As Electronic Arrays, Inc. in Mountain View, CA, the company designed and manufactured MOS shift registers, ROMs and in 1976 introduced the NMOS, 8-bit EA9002 microprocessor. It was acquired by NEC in 1978.
The Electrotechnical Laboratory (ETL) was founded as a laboratory responsible for conducting test and research on electricity and electrical communications under the Japanese Ministry of Communications in 1891. Affiliated with the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) since 1952, the Laboratory developed Japan's first transistorized electronic computer, ETL Mark III, in 1956. Located in Tsukuba Science City near Tokyo, today ETL performs research in life science & technology, information technology, nanotechnology, materials & manufacturing, the environment & energy, geological survey and applied geoscience, and metrology and measurement technology.
Exar Corporation was founded in Sunnyvale, CA in 1971 as a subsidiary of Rohm of Japan by Alan Grebene, Paul Davis and K. Greenough from Signetics to design and develop analog integrated circuits. Rohm sold a 32% of the company to the public market in 1985 and divested all ownership in 1994. Based in Fremont, CA, revenue in fiscal year 2006 was $67 million.
Founded in Palo Alto California in 1957 by eight scientists and engineers from Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory, Fairchild Semiconductor Corporation was funded by Fairchild Camera and Instrument Corporation of Syossett, New York. Rapidly establishing itself as a technology innovator based on its invention of the planar manufacturing process in 1959, the company developed the first monolithic integrated circuit, the first CMOS device, and numerous other technical and business innovations. French oil field services company Schlumberger Limited purchased Fairchild in 1979 and sold a much weakened business to National Semiconductor in 1987. In 1997 National divested a group, formed as the present Fairchild Semiconductor, in a leveraged buy-out. The company re-emerged as a public entity based in South Portland, Maine in 1999 under the corporate name Fairchild Semiconductor International, Inc. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $1.6 billion.
Ferranti Ltd. was established in Oldham, Lancashire, England in 1905 to manufacture electrical power distribution equipment. Ferranti entered the defense electronics business in World War II and developed a number of early computer systems in association with Manchester University. The computer division merged with International Computers and Tabulators (ICT) in 1963. One of the first European IC manufacturers, Ferranti produced high-volumes of uncommitted logic arrays (ULAs) for home computer vendors and purchased US gate array vendor Interdesign in 1977. The microelectronics business was sold to Plessey in 1988.
Four Phase Systems
Four-Phase Systems, Inc. was founded in Cupertino, CA in 1969 by Lee Boysel, Cloyd Marvin, Charles Sutcliffe and others from Fairchild Semiconductor plus Frank Wanlass and L. Seeley from General Instrument with an initial strategy to offer MOS LSI component building blocks. With 12 in-house developed chips, including the AL1 microprocessor slice and a 2K DRAM, the company entered the distributed processor systems market in 1970. Motorola purchased Four Phase Systems in 1981.
Fujitsu, Ltd. was established in 1935 under the name Fuji Tsushinki Seizo as a spin off of the Fuji Electric Company to manufacture telecommunications equipment. The name was contracted to Fujitsu in 1967. Fujitsu manufactured Japan's first computer, the FACOM 100 in 1954 and expanded internationally by acquiring International Computers Ltd (ICL) in the UK in 1981 and Amdahl in the U.S. in 1997. Fujitsu was one of five major Japanese semiconductor suppliers to participate in MITIs’ VLSI Technology Project consortium in 1976.
Garrett AiResearch Corporation was founded in Los Angeles, CA 1946 as a supplier of engines to the general aviation and light military propulsion market. The company merged with Signal Corporation in 1968 and lost its identity in a merger with Allied Corporation in 1985. Garrett developed an early MOS LSI chipset for the Central Air Data Computer (CADC) under contract to Grumman Aircraft for the U.S. Navy F14A fighter jet in 1970.
General Electric (GE)
The General Electric Company (no relation to GEC of the U.K.) was formed by a merger of the Edison General Electric Company with Thomson-Houston Electric Company in Schenectady, New York in 1892. GE was an important supplier of a wide range of discrete semiconductor devices in the 1950s and 1960s and contributed major manufacturing and technology innovations in small signal and power transistors, SCRs, triacs, and tunnel diodes. Harris Corporation purchased the GE Solid State semiconductor business in 1988.
General Instrument (GI)
General Instrument (GI) was a diversified electronics manufacturer founded in 1939 in Chicago, IL. The company acquired General Transistor on Long Island, NY in 1960 to produce diodes and transistors and recruited MOS pioneer Frank Wanlass from General Microelectronics in 1965 to expand its portfolio into LSI devices. In addition to being a major supplier of masked-ROM and calculator chips in the 1970s, GI developed an EAROM (Electrically Alterable ROM), 8 and 16-bit microcontrollers, and a family of sound chips. GI spun the Microelectronics division off as Microchip Technology in 1989.
General Microelectronics (GMe)
Funded by Pyle National of Chicago, General Microelectronics, Inc. was founded in Santa Clara, CA in 1963 by Phil Ferguson, Howard Bobb and Robert Norman from Fairchild and retired marine colonel Art Lowell to design a low-power version of the Fairchild RTL (Micrologic) family for NSA. After Frank Wanlass joined in 1964 from Fairchild, the company focussed on MOS technology and introduced the industry’s first commercial MOS IC and developed 23 custom chips for the Victor Comptometer 3900, the first MOS-based calculator. GMe became profitable early in 1965 but to access additional capital the company was sold to Philco-Ford Microlectronics in 1966. The division operated under the wing of Walt LaBerge of Western Development Labs until the business was transferred to Philadelphia and the Santa Clara facility closed in 1968.
Founded in Jamaica, NY by Herman Failkov from germanium diode manufacturer Radio Receptor and Eugene Kral in 1954, General Transistor Corporation became a supplier of germanium alloy transistors to Univac and developed a high-speed device specifically for the CDC 1604 computer. General Transistor went public in 1956 and was purchased General Instrument in 1960.
Germanium Products (GPC)
Radio Development & Research Corporation was a member of the initial group of companies to purchase a license from Western Electric to manufacture transistors 1952. Germanium Products Corporation was established in Jersey City, N. J as a subsidiary of RD&R and introduced one of the first junction transistors to the market with advertisements in the June 1952 issue of Radio & Television News magazine. A GPC TN-10 NPN germanium grown junction device appeared alongside two vacuum tubes in the Sonotone model 1010 hearing aid in late 1952.
Hamilton Watch (HMW)
Founded in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, in 1892, Hamilton Watch Company (later renamed HMW) timepieces kept the railroads running on time and accompanied Admiral Byrd on his expeditions to the poles. The first electric model introduced in 1957 was a great success and the first digital watch, the Pulsar, caught the imagination of the world. HMW sold its watch division to Swiss owners in 1974. The Pulsar division, called Time Computer, Inc. continued until 1977. The "Pulsar" name is now owned by Seiko.
Harris Corporation was founded to make automatic printing presses in Niles, OH in 1895. In 1967 the company acquired Radiation Inc. of Melbourne, FL as the foundation for its Government Systems and Semiconductor businesses. Harris Semiconductor was an early vendor of radiation resistant analog and digital devices and PROMs. Harris provided IC technology to Matra-Harris, a 1979 European joint venture with a French state-owned electronics company. In 1988 Harris acquired General Electric’s semiconductor operations, which included GE’s prior acquisition of the RCA solid-state business, and in 1999 spun the unit off under the name Intersil, a Silicon Valley company that had been acquired by GE in 1981.
Founded as an electrical repair shop in 1910, Japanese conglomerate Hitachi Ltd. built its first transistorized computer in 1959 and its first planar silicon transistor in 1966. An important supplier of high-speed MOS memory chips in the 1980s, LSI products, including an extensive line of MCU / MPU devices, are produced today by Renesas Technology Corporation, a company jointly owned by Hitachi and Mitsubishi Electric.
Industrial Development Engineering Associates (IDEA)
Industrial Development Engineering Associates was formed as a radio engineering consulting firm in Indianapolis, IN in 1945. The Regency Division signed an agreement in 1954 to manufacture a miniature transistor radio based on Texas Instruments transistors. Regency engineer Dick Koch modified the TI design for mass production. About 100,000 Regency TR-1 pocket radios were sold at $49.95 each before the company abandoned the business due to low profit margins.
Intel Corporation was founded by Gordon Moore and Robert Noyce from Fairchild Semiconductor in Mountain View, CA in 1968. Intel applied the recently developed silicon gate MOS process to building semiconductor memory devices that could compete on cost with the dominant magnetic core technology. Intel engineers developed the company's first microprocessor in 1971. By 1984, when memory devices had become low-margin commodity products, Intel had abandoned the mainstream RAM business to focus on microprocessor and supporting products. Headquartered in Santa Clara, Intel was the world’s largest manufacturer of semiconductor devices with 2006 revenue of $35.7 billion.
Interdesign Inc. was founded by Hans Camenzind from Signetics in 1972 and operated in Scotts Valley, CA as one of the first semiconductor companies to focus exclusively on the design and manufacture of semi-custom integrated circuits sold under the trade name Monochip. Interdesign was purchased by the Ferranti of the U.K. in 1978 and absorbed in a merger with GEC Plessey in 1988.
Founded in Germany by Herbert Mataré, co-inventor of the French Transistron, Intermetall became a supplier of semiconductors to European consumer electronics companies before its purchase by ITT and subsequent sale to Micronas Semiconductor Holding AG of Switzerland in 1997.
International Business Machines (IBM)
IBM was incorporated in Endicott, NY in 1911 by merging several businesses into the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company. Renamed International Business Machines, Inc. in 1924, the company grew into the dominant U.S. supplier of business and accounting machines in the first half of the century. The 1964 introduction of System/360 using SLT (Solid Logic Technology) hybrid transistor modules solidified IBM’s position in the industry. The company pioneered the production of n-channel MOS memories. Its advanced R & D and manufacturing capabilities have made it one of the world’s largest semiconductor producers. IBM reported 2006 revenue of $91.4 billion.
International Computers (ICL)
International Computers Ltd was created in 1968 as an amalgamation of several U.K. computer companies including ICT (International Computers and Tabulators), Ferranti, and English Electric Leo Marconi. A technology and manufacturing alliance with Fujitsu culminated in its acquisition by the Japanese company in 2002.
International Microcircuits (IMI)
Founded in 1972 in Santa Clara, CA by Frank Deverse and James W. Tuttle from Fairchild Semiconductor, International Microcircuits, Inc. (IMI) was an early supplier of CMOS gate array design services and devices. The company produced mixed-signal timing circuits in the 1990s and was acquired by Cypress Semiconductor in 2001.
International Telephone and Telegraph (ITT)
Founded in 1920 as the Puerto Rico Telephone Company by Sosthenes Behn, ITT grew by acquisition in the European market. Purchases included telecommunications and components companies SEL (later Intermetall) in Germany and STC in the UK. Both firms became important early regional semiconductor suppliers. Based in West Palm Beach, FL in the U.S., ITT Semiconductor purchased Clevite in 1965. The businesses were closed or sold piecemeal in the dismantling of the conglomerate beginning in the 1980s.
Intersil was founded in 1967 by planar process inventor Jean Hoerni together with H. Gebhatdt, and S. Wauchope (all most recently with Union Carbide) with funding from the Swiss firm SSIH to develop low-power CMOS technology for electronic watches. Intersil Memories was established as a separate company in 1971 by Marshall Cox, Joe Rizzi, Mel Snyder and Ken Moyle (all at one time with Fairchild) in 1971. The companies merged with Advanced Memory Systems in 1976. Intersil was acquired by GE in 1981 and sold to Harris Corporation in 1988, when the name was retired. It reappeared in 1999 when Harris spun-off the semiconductor business. Headquartered in Milpitas, CA, Intersil recorded 2006 revenue of $741 million.
Lattice Semiconductor Inc. was established near Hillsborough, OR in 1983 to produce a broad line of high performance CMOS integrated circuits. Following early financial difficulties, the company focused on CMOS replacements for MMI’s PAL family. Lattice purchased Vantis (the merged AMD/MMI programmable device operations) in 1999 and the AT&T/Lucent/Agere FPGA business in 2001. Lattice 2006 revenue exceeded $245 million.
Linear Technology of Milpitas, CA was founded in 1981 as one of the first companies to focus exclusively on the design and development of high-performance analog ICs. The company was founded by Robert Swanson, Robert Dobkin, Brian Hollins, Brent Welling and Robert Widlar, all formerly with National Semiconductor, and joined early on by PMI founder, George Erdi. Today Linear Technology is one of the largest independent analog IC manufacturers, with annual revenues over $1 billion, and recognized for the company’s innovative analog designs, product quality and consistent financial performance. Linear Technology is traded on the NASDAQ and joined the S&P 500 Index of companies in the spring of 2000.
LSI Logic Corporation was founded in Santa Clara, CA in 1981 by former Fairchild CEO Wilfred Corrigan together with other ex-Fairchild employees Mick Bohn, Jim Koford, Bill O'Meara, and Rob Walker to apply CAD software tools and fast turnaround prototype capability to deliver complex gate array devices. An early follower of the fabless manufacturing model, LSI initially took advantage of excess capacity at Japanese supplier Toshiba. The company merged with Agere Systems (former AT&T/Lucent) in 2007 to form LSI Corporation. Based in Milpitas, CA 2006 revenue was $ 1.98 million.
Maxim Integrated Products
Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. was founded in 1983 in Sunnyvale, California by a group of ten coworkers including John F. Gifford, Frederick G. Beck, and Richard C. Hood. Several founders had formerly been employed by Intersil, Inc. at that time a subsidiary of General Electric. Maxim acquired Dallas Semiconductor in 2001 and in 2006 posted revenue of $ 1.9 billion on a broad line of linear and mixed-signal integrated circuits.
Metropolitan Vickers Electrical Company
British heavy electrical engineering and appliance manufacturer Metropolitan Vickers Electrical Company, also known as Metrovick, was founded from a Westinghouse subsidiary in 1919. Expanding into electronics systems after 1945, based on its relationship with Manchester University the company produced one of the first transitorized commercial computers. Former units of Metrovick are part of today’s Marconi Corporation plc.
Founded in Cupertino, CA, as a developer of digital electronic watches and timekeeping instruments Microma Universal, Inc. was acquired by Intel in 1972. After a $15 million investment in dedicated CMOS and LCD technology and consumer promotion efforts, Intel divested the operation in 1978 as inconsistent with its strategic direction.
The Ministry of International Trade and Industry was created in 1949 to coordinate Japan’s international trade policy. At the height of its influence MITI was one of the most powerful agencies of the Japanese government. A 1976 ministry-backed cooperative VLSI research consortium, the VLSI Technology Research Association, played an important role in Japan’s domination of the world DRAM market by the mid-1980s.
Japanese conglomerate Mitsubishi ("Three Diamonds") was broken into scores of independent companies after 1945. Mitsubishi Electric Corporation is the entity created to address electrical and electronics markets. Mitsubishi and Hitachi merged their LSI semiconductor operations into a new jointly-owned company, Renesas Technology Corporation, in 2002. Mitsubishi continues to produce optical and power devices.
Molectro Science Corporation was founded in Santa Clara, CA by J. Nall and D. Spittlehouse from Fairchild in 1962. The company is best known for hiring Fairchild linear experts Dave Talbert and Robert Widlar in 1965. Within months Molectro was acquired by National Semiconductor, then based in Danbury, Connecticut, to provide an entry into the monolithic integrated circuit business.
Monolithic Memories (MMI)
Monolithic Memories, Inc. was founded in Mountain View, CA by Israeli engineer Zeev Drori from Fairchild and IBM in 1968. MMI developed high-performance bipolar ROMs, PROMs, and specialty LSI logic devices. The company is best known for establishing its PAL programmable logic device architecture and development tools as industry standard products second-sourced by AMD, National, TI and others. MMI merged with AMD in 1987. AMD later spun off the combined programmable logic operation as Vantis and that business was acquired by Lattice Semiconductor in 1999.
Funded by Allen-Bradley, MOS Technology, Inc. was founded in Norristown, PA in 1969 to develop calculator chips. A team of Motorola engineers including Chuck Peddle and Bill Mensch joined in 1975 to create the 6502, an improved version of the 6800 microprocessor, that powered the Apple II. Commodore Business Machines acquired the company in 1976 and operated the business as the Commodore Semiconductor Group.
With majority financing from Sprague Electric, Mostek Corporation was founded in 1969 in Carrollton, TX by Berry Cash, Robert Palmer, Vern McKinney, Bob Proebsting, Vin Prothero, and L.J. Sevin from Texas Instruments. Mostek produced one of the first single-chip calculator circuits for Nippon Calculating Machine in 1970. Development of a small die size 4K device in 1973 established the company as a major DRAM supplier. United Technologies Corporation purchased the company in 1979 and sold the business to SGS-Thomson in 1987.
Started as Galvin Manufacturing Corporation in Chicago in 1928 the company adopted the name Motorola in 1947 as a trademark derived from the focus on automotive electronics. The Semiconductor Division, created from a research lab established in Pheonix, AZ by Dan Noble in 1949, grew into one of the world’s major broad-line semiconductor suppliers under the leadership of C. Lester Hogan. Motorola spun off the discrete products business as ON Semiconductor in 2000 and LSI products as Freescale Semiconductor, Inc. in 2003.
National Semiconductor (NSC)
In 1959 Bernard Rothlein and seven other engineers left the semiconductor division of Sperry Rand Corporation to found National Semiconductor in Danbury, CT. An investor group bought the financially troubled company after a successful lawsuit brought by Sperry and hired Charles Sporck, general manager of Fairchild and a team of key manufacturing and marketing executives in 1967 to reestablish the business in Santa Clara, CA. Based on a high-volume, low-cost manufacturing strategy National became a leading supplier of analog and TTL logic devices. Fiscal 2006 revenue was $2.2 billion.
Nippon Electric Company (NEC)
Nippon Electric Company, Ltd. was established in Tokyo, Japan in 1899 together with Western Electric Company of the U.S as the first Japanese joint venture with foreign capital. NEC started transistor development in 1950 and built Japan’s first volume production line in 1958. With a focus on advanced memory and microprocessor devices the company became the world’s largest merchant semiconductor supplier for the seven years following 1985. The name was changed to NEC Corporation in 1983.
Roger Noble and Alan R. Pearlman founded Nexus Research Laboratory, Inc of Canton, MA from Philbrick Researches, Boston, MA in the early 1960s to produce analog modules and op amps. The companies were reunited in 1966 when Teledyne Components acquired them both to create Teledyne Philbrick Nexus. In about 1985, Teledyne spun this business off as Telcom Semiconductor Inc, Mountain View, CA that was acquired in 2000 by Microchip.
Pacific Semiconductors (PSI)
Pacific Semiconductors, Inc. was founded in 1954 by Harper North, Director of Semiconductor Research at Hughes Aircraft Company to develop germanium point contact and silicon alloy diodes and high frequency, high power transistors. Based in Culver City, CA, PSI was acquired by TRW in 1962 (or 1965?) and operated as the Semiconductor Division of the TRW Components Group.
George A. Philbrick Researches, Inc. was founded in 1946 by George Philbrick in Boston, MA to build analog computers for military aircraft. The vacuum tube-based K2-W, the first commercial general-purpose differential op amp, introduced in 1952 led to a broad line of transistorized analog modules. Philbrick was acquired together with its spin-out company Nexus by Teledyne in 1966
The predecessor to the Philadelphia Storage Battery Company (Philco) was founded in 1892. A pioneer of consumer radio and television sets, the company entered the transistor business in the early 1950s. The company was purchased by Ford Motor Company in 1961 and operated as Philco-Ford Corporation. Philco developed bipolar linear and digital ICs and in 1966 purchased MOS pioneer General Micro-Electronics of Santa Clara. As Ford Microelectronics, the company continued into the late 1980s.
Consumer electrics giant Philips began producing light bulbs in Eindhoven, Holland in 1891. Together with subsidiaries Mullard in the UK and Valvo in Germany, the company entered the semiconductor business in the early 1950s and expanded into the U.S. with the purchase of Signetics (1975) and VLSI Technology (1999). As a broad-based supplier, Philips has ranked in the top 10 world wide semiconductor vendors for many years. The unit was spun-off as NXP Semiconductors in 2006 with revenue of $5.9 billion.
Precision Monolithics (PMI)
Precision Monolithics, Inc. was founded in Santa Clara, CA 1968 by Marvin Rudin and Garth Wilson from Fairchild to produce linear integrated circuits. They attracted top designers George Erdi and Dan Dooley who developed a number of popular operational amplifier and data acquisition products before the company was acquired by Analog Devices in 1990.
PAL inventors John Birkner and H.T. Chua together with Andy Chan of MMI founded Peer Research in San Jose in 1988 to develop very high-speed field programmable gate arrays using amorphous silicon anti-fuse technology and the first PC-based development tools under MS Windows. Located in Sunnyvale and renamed QuickLogic Corporation, 2006 revenue was $35 million.
Cofounded in 1950 by Homer Denius and George Shaw in Melbourne Florida, Radiation Inc. designed and manufactured telemetry equipment for rockets. Joseph Boyd joined the company in 1962 from the University of Michigan to set-up an integrated circuit operation. Radiation developed early programmable devices and a dielectrically-isolated process to manufacture radiation-hardened semiconductors for space and defense applications before being acquired by Harris in 1967.
Radiation Laboratory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Radiation Laboratory, or Rad Lab, was established at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1940 as a division of the National Defense Research Committee to exploit radar and magnetron technology developed in the UK. Lee A. DuBridge was appointed director of the laboratory. After the closing of the lab in 1945, the U. S. government continued to pay key people who had worked at the Radiation Laboratory for six months to enable them to contribute their experiences to the 27 volume MIT Radiation Laboratory Series published by McGraw-Hill, New York between 1947 and 1951
Vannevar Bush, Laurence K. Marshall, and Charles G. Smith, founded the Raytheon Company in Cambridge, MA. as the American Appliance Company in 1922. Its technology-based businesses have ranged from microwave ovens to missile systems. Under Norman Krim, Raytheon started producing point-contact devices in 1948 and dominated the merchant market for junction transistors in the early 1950s. The company expanded to California by purchasing Rheem in Mountain View in 1959. The division was sold to Fairchild Semiconductor in 1977.
RCA Solid State
Holding a controlling interest, General Electric founded the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) together with AT&T in 1919 to develop international communications. With numerous interests in radio broadcasting and manufacturing, RCA dominated the production of electronic vacuum tubes. RCA Solid State’s Princeton Research Laboratory and the Somerville manufacturing location in New Jersey introduced many early transistor and MOS IC technology innovations before the company was reacquired by GE in 1986.
With funding from central heating and cooling systems supplier Rheem Manufacturing Company, Ed Baldwin the first general manager of Fairchild quit together with four of his staff in 1959 to start Rheem Semiconductor in Mountain View, CA to produce diffused silicon mesa transistors in competition with his former employer. Quickly overtaken by Fairchild’s new planar process, the troubled company was purchased by Raytheon in 1961.
Established in Wisconsin in 1919, diversified industrial manufacturer Rockwell acquired North American Aviation in 1967. The IC operation of the former Autonetics division in Anaheim, CA pioneered the use of MOS LSI circuits for hand-held calculators with Hayakawa (Sharp Electronics of Japan) in the early 1970s under the name North American Rockwell Microelectronics. After acquiring Brooktree Corporation in 1996, Rockwell spun-off the semiconductor business as an independent entity in 1999 under the name Conexant. Fiscal year 2006 revenue was $970.8 million.
Scientific Data Systems (SDS)
Scientific Data Systems was founded in Santa Monica, CA in September 1961 by Max Palevsky from Bendix and Packard Bell, to produce computers for NASA and other high-performance scientific and academic applications. SDS’s first machine, the 24-bit 910 shipped in 1962, was one of the first designs to use silicon transistors. The Sigma series of 1966 used custom ICs supplied by Fairchild and others. The company was sold to Xerox Corporation in 1969 and operated as Xerox Data Systems until it was closed in 1975.
SEEQ Technology, Inc. was founded in San Jose, CA in 1981 by Gordon Campbell, George Perlegos, Phil Salisbury and others to develop EPROM and EEPROM devices in competition with their former employer Intel. Extended litigation with Intel and other problems led to the sale of the company assets to Atmel Corporation in 1994.
Kintaro Hattori established K. Hattori & Co., Ltd. in Japan in 1881 to manufacture clocks and first used the Sieko brand name in 1924. The company introduced transistorized table clocks in 1959, the world's first quartz watch, the Astron, in 1969, and the first LCD quartz watch with a six-digit digital display in 1973. Formally named Sieko Corporation in 1990, today the company is one of the world’s premier watch producers.
In 1960 Fairchild Camera and Instrument created a joint venture called SGS – Fairchild in Agrate, Italy with Olivetti and Telettra to manufacture and market Fairchild Semiconductor Division products in Europe. Fairchild sold its interest to SGS-ATES (Aquila Tubi E Semiconduttori) in 1972. A successor company merged with Thomson Semiconducteurs of France to create the ST Group in 1987.
In 1912 Tokuji Hayakawa started a metalworking shop in Tokyo and developed the highly successful “Ever Sharp” mechanical pencil. After moving to Osaka, Hayakawa entered the consumer electronics market with the introduction of crystal radio sets. In 1964, Sharp produced the first all transistor desktop calculator. Early bipolar IC and portable MOS-based IC machines were followed by the first practical LCD design in 1973. Sharp Corporation remains a major consumer electronics supplier today
Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory
Established as a division of Beckman Instruments, Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory was founded by William Shockley in Mountain View, CA in 1956 to develop diffused silicon transistors based on technology developed by Bell Labs. The company never recovered from the defection of eight key scientists and engineers to form Fairchild Semiconductor in 1957. Beckman sold the division to Clevite Corporation in 1960 after losing his $1 million investment.
Siemens and Halske
Werner von Siemens and Johann Georg Halske established Telegraphen-Bau-Anstalt von Siemens & Halske to produce telegraph equipment in Berlin, Germany in 1847. With activities from domestic appliances to power plants, by 1939 Siemens was the world's largest electrical company. Semiconductor developments have ranged from power devices to advanced memory technology. The memory business was spun off into a new company known as Infineon Technologies in 1999.
One of the first companies to focus exclusively on integrated circuits, Signetics Corporation was founded in Mountain View, CA 1961 by David Allison, David James, Lionel Kattner, and Mark Weissenstern of Fairchild. Based in Sunnyvale, CA, Signetics became a major supplier of high-volume bipolar digital logic and memory devices before the parent company, Corning Glass, sold the operations to Philips in 1975.
Hugo Lieber founded Sonotone Corporation to produce hearing aids in New York in 1930. The transistor made its commercial debut in the Sonotone model 1010 at a price of $229.50 in 1953. Sonotone was purchased by the Servel Corporation in 1965 and was later owned by the Clevite Corporation.
Masaru Ibuka and Akio Morita built Japan's first tape recorder after founding Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo K.K (Tokyo Communications Industry Company) in 1946. They adopted the western sounding name Sony Corporation in 1958 after the international commercial success of their transistor radios. With the first Japanese license to Bell Labs patents, Sony started its own semiconductor operation to support the in-house needs of high-volume consumer products. Revenue of $64 billion in 2006 makes Sony one of the world’s largest media conglomerates.
Frank J. Sprague founded the Sprague Electric Railway and Motor Company in 1886 to exploit applications for electric motors. By the 1950s Sprague produced capacitors and other electrical components for the consumer electronics market and in 1965 opened a plant in Worcester, MA to build semiconductors. The semiconductor group, producing ICs and sensors for power electronics and motion control, spun out as Allegro Microsystems Inc., and is today owned by Sanken Electric Company, Ltd. of Saitama Japan.
With headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, STMicroelectronics was created in 1987 by the merger of SGS Microelettronica of Italy and Thomson Semiconducteurs of France. ST is in the top 10 suppliers world wide with 2006 revenue of $9.85 billion.
With roots in Massachusetts in 1901, the lamp and vacuum tube manufacturer adopted the name Sylvania Electric Products, Inc., in 1942 and merged with General Telephone to form GTE Sylvania in 1959. The Semiconductor Division based in Woburn, MA developed high frequency transistors and introduced the first commercial TTL family in 1963.
Synopsys Inc. was founded in 1986 by Aart J. de Geus and a team of engineers from General Electric’s Microelectronics Center in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina under the original name Optimal Solutions. Renamed Synopsys (SYNthesis of OPtimal SYStems), the company pioneered the commercial application of logic synthesis technology for the design of complex microelectronic devices. With headquarters in Mountain View, CA, Synopsys 2006 revenue was $1.096 billion.
Alex d'Arbeloff and Nicholas DeWolf founded Teradyne, Inc. in downtown Boston in 1960 to develop electronic test equipment for reliable high-volume, low-cost production of semiconductor devices. In 1966, Teradyne introduced the first integrated circuit tester to use a minicomputer to control a series of test steps. As one of the industry’s largest test equipment companies, Teradyne had sales of $1.38 billion in 2006.
Texas Instruments (TI)
Founded as Geophysical Service Incorporated (GSI), to provide services to the petroleum industry in Dallas, Texas in 1941, the company name changed to Texas Instruments in 1951. A license to transistor technology from Bell labs in 1952, led to development of the first commercial silicon transistor in 1954 and Jack Kilby’s integrated circuit in 1958. TI popularized TTL digital logic circuits in 1974 and continues to produce the devices today. TI invented the hand-held calculator in 1967 and the single-chip microcomputer in 1971. TI is one of the world’s largest producers of semiconductors with 2006 revenue of $14.25 billion.
The Timex Group B.V. is an American-based watch manufacturer with headquarters in Middlebury, CT. Known for inexpensive consumer wrist watches, the company entered the digital watch market and, through an arrangement with Sinclair of the UK, the home PC market in the 1980s. Timex remains a popular brand with design, manufacturing and sales operations worldwide. Privately owned by Fred Olsen & Co. of Norway, the company does not publish financial information.
Tokyo Communications Industry Company
Tokyo Communications Industry Company (Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo K.K) was the original name of Sony Corporation. See Sony.
Tokyo Electron (TEL)
Tokyo Electron Limited was established 1963 and was an early distributor of Fairchild Semiconductor devices and U.S. produced semiconductor manufacturing equipment in Japan. In addition to adapting systems for the local market TEL started its manufacturing its own equipment designs and in 2006 reported revenue of approximately $5.8 billion.
Integrated electric equipment manufacturer, Tokyo Shibaura Denki (Tokyo Shibaura Electric Co., Ltd.) was formed in 1939 from two companies founded in the late 1800s. The company developed Japan’s first transistorized televisions in 1959 and adopted the official name Toshiba in 1978. The semiconductor operations include discrete devices, system LSI, and memory operations and with 2006 sales of $10.2 billion ranks in the top 10 world wide suppliers. Total corporate sales were $52.27 billion.
The Bakalar brothers, David and Leo, founded Transitron Electronic Corporation in a former bakery in Melrose, MA in 1952. Their business boomed when they developed the "gold-bonded" high-volume process for manufacturing diodes. Fortune magazine estimated 1959 sales at $42 million making Transitron the world's second largest merchant semiconductor manufacturer after Texas Instruments. The company hired many European engineers including Wilfred Corrigan, Dave Fullagar, Pierre Lamond, and George Wells who went on to senior positions in the industry. Thomas Longo joined Transitron from GTE Sylvania in 1966 and developed an IC operation by second-sourcing Sylvania SUHL TTL. He left for Fairchild in 1969. Company operations were sold piecemeal in the 1980s.
The TRW LSI Products division was created from the IC operation of Pacific Semiconductor acquired by the TRW Defense and Space Systems unit at Redondo Beach, CA in 1965. LSI developed data conversion devices and digital multipliers for high-speed signal processing applications using a proprietary triple-diffused bipolar process and moved to La Jolla, CA in the 1970s. Raytheon Semiconductor purchased the TRW LSI operation in 1992.
The Victor Adding Machine Company incorporated in 1918 in Springfield, IL developed a business in low-cost mechaical add-listing machines and merged with the Comptometer Corporation to form the Victor Comptometer Corporation in 1961. Victor developed one of the first MOS LSI-based calculators in 1965 using custom MOS chips from General Microelectronics. As Victor Technologies the company continues as a specialist supplier of calculators to business.
VLSI Technology, Inc was founded in 1979 by Jack Balletto, Dan Floyd, and Gunnar Wetlesen - all from Fairchild by way of Synertek - and Doug Fairbairn from Xerox PARC. Supported by a broad suite of computer aided engineering tools, VLSI was an early vendor of standard cell ASIC devices to the merchant market. Philips Semiconductor acquired VLSI in June 1990
Incorporated in Chicago, IL in 1872, the Western Electric Manufacturing Company was acquired by the Bell Telephone Company in 1881 and operated as the manufacturing arm of AT&T. The Western Electric facility in Allentown, PA became the production location for transistors and later ICs developed by Bell Telephone Laboratories. The semiconductor operation was renamed AT&T Microelectronics in 1988. AT&T spun-out the systems and technology units, including Bell Labs, as Lucent Technologies in 1996, and Lucent spun-out the semiconductor business as Agere Systems in 2002. Agere and LSI Logic merged in 2007.
Founder of the Westinghouse Air Brake Company George Westinghouse Jr. formed the Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Company in Pittsburg, PA in 1886. The company became one of Thomas Edison's main rivals in the development of the American electricity system. Known to consumers for its home appliances, by the 1960s Westinghouse was broad-based electrical engineering conglomerate. A partnership with Siemens of Germany in silicon power transistors in Youngwood, the Central Research Laboratory at Churchill Borough, and new product development at Wilkinsburg, all in PA, made Westinghouse the third largest semiconductor-related research organization in the US, after Bell Labs and General Electric. Along with Texas Instruments, Westinghouse was one of the first companies to recognize the promise of integrated circuit (IC) technology for serving the Cold War needs of the Department of Defense (DoD). A contract to explore the concept of molecular electronics in the late 1950s led to the establishment of an integrated circuit operation in Elkwood, MD in 1962. By 1967 Elkridge housed about 1,200 employees in a 170,000 square foot facility and had sales of $15 million. The division closed in 1968.
Wireless Specialty Apparatus Company
Former AT&T engineer, Greenleaf W. Pickard and two associates founded the Wireless Specialty Apparatus Company to market crystal radio detectors in 1907. The company produced radio receivers for the Navy in 1908. In 1921, at which time it was owned by the United Fruit Company, the company was investigated by the government along with GE, RCA, and others for monopolistic trade practices related to radio apparatus.
Xilinx, Inc was founded in San Jose, CA in 1984 by Jim Barnett, Ross Freeman, and Bernie Vonderschmitt to develop a field programmable gate array based on a static RAM cell structure. The first product the XC2064 was introduced together with PC-based development tools in 1985. Xilinx 2006 revenue exceeded $1.7 billion.
Zilog, Inc. was formed by Federico Faggin and Ralph Ungermann in Cupertino, CA in 1974 to develop an improved version of the Intel 8080 microprocessor. The Z80 introduced in 1976 was used in the Radio Shack TRS-80 and the Sinclair ZX80 home PCs and became one of the most popular 8-bit MPUs in the market and continues to find new designs today as an embedded core. The company became a subsidiary of Exxon in 1980 and was reacquired by Zilog employees in 1989, went public in 1991 and reorganized under Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2001.