Trivia

Hard

Microchips Are Mostly Composed Of What?

Beryllium
Silicon
Copper
Technetium
A microscopic view of a Xeon Core i7 Intel processor.
Intel

Answer: Silicon

The case may be ceramic, the connectors may be gold or other metals, but the bulk (and heart) of modern microchips is the natural semi-conductor silicon. From the smallest on-board chip to the biggest and beefiest cutting-edge CPU, that heart is a bundle of tiny transistors etched into layers of silicon. While the raw material inside microchips has remained largely unchanged over the last forty years, the technology behind chip construction and transistor etching has evolved radically.

From the 1970s to the present, ever increasing miniaturization has led to increasingly powerful processors. In 1971, Intel released the Intel 4004 processor, which sported a scant 2,300 transistors. By comparison, Intel’s six-core Core i7 Xeon processor—seen in microscopic close-up above and released forty years later in 2011—sports a staggering 2,270,000,000 transistors—nearly one million times more than their original processor.

Trivia

Hard

The Phrase “Pushing The Envelope” Originated With?

Trivia

Hard

Which Sci-Fi Star Was Granted The Honorary Rank Of Air Force Brigadier General?

Trivia

Easy

What Is It Illegal For The U.S. Treasury To Print On Currency?

Trivia

Hard

Florida Prisons Have Helped Solve Crimes By Distributing What To Inmates?

Trivia

Hard

In Japanese Animation, Sleep Is Frequently Indicated Not With “Zzzz”s But?

Trivia

Hard

The Khasi People Of Northern India Craft What Out Of Living Trees?

Trivia

Very Hard

The Only Type Of Conifer Tree That Can Produce Viable “Albino” Children Is The?

Trivia

Hard

Which State, Amongst The Contiguous United States, Has Its Own Power Grid?

Trivia

Hard

Which Celebrity Named His Daughter After A Video Game Heroine?

Trivia

Hard

What Common Household Device Was Originally Created for NASA’s Skylab Space Station?