ALEXANDER GRAHAM BELL (1847-1922)

1875 – USA

‘The inventor of the telephone, Bell devoted much of his life to working with the deaf’

After emigrating to Canada from Scotland in 1870, Bell met Thomas Watson, who would help Bell’s theoretical ideas become physical reality. Bell believed that if the right apparatus could be devised, sound waves from the mouth could be converted into electric current, which could then be sent down a wire relatively simply and converted into sound at the other end using a suitable device. Bell’s telephone was patented in 1876.

Bell used the money brought in from his invention to found his company AT & T and the Bell Laboratories.
Just as THOMAS EDISON improved the viability of Bell’s telephone, so Bell enhanced Edison’s phonograph.

Bell spent some time educating Helen Keller and was instrumental in founding the journal ‘Science‘.

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WILLIAM SHOCKLEY (1910- 89)

1947 – USA

‘The First Transistor’

Shockley was a member of the team at Bell Laboratories investigating the properties of electricity conducting crystals, focusing in particular on germanium.
This research led to the development of the junction transistor, virtually invalidating the vacuüm tube overnight.

The First Transistor The transistor was developed in 1947 as a replacement for bulky vacuum tubes and mechanical relays. The invention revolutionized the world of electronics and became the basic building block upon which all modern computer technology rests. In 1956, Bell Labs scientists William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain shared the Nobel Prize in Physics for the transistor. Shockley also founded Shockley Semiconductor in Mountain View, California -- one of the first high-tech companies in what would later become known as Silicon Valley. Photo: Bell Labs (581 x 580)

The First Transistor
Photo: Bell Labs

The transistor was developed in 1947 as a replacement for bulky vacuum tubes and mechanical relays. The invention revolutionized the world of electronics and became the basic building block upon which all modern computer technology rests.
In 1956, Bell Labs scientists William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain shared the Nobel Prize in Physics for the transistor.

Shockley also founded Shockley Semiconductor in Mountain View, California — one of the first high-tech companies in what would later become known as Silicon Valley.

picture of the Nobel medal - link to nobelprize.org

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