My wife is really into reading up on future technologies. She keep telling me that nano-technology is so far advanced that their holding back on all they can do with it.
The other night she said the new big jump will be graphene technology. Something about using the properties of carbon. I think this stuff is cheap and may conduct better than gold.
I read somewhere the other night that a solar panel made with graphene can be lots cheaper than silicon and put out twice the voltage and maybe amps.
I did read on this site below that graphene will advance the digital screens we use today and hopefully at a much lower price.
I can remember back when they started using silicon for rectifiers that would convert ac to dc. Then came the transistor invented by Bell Labs. They simply put a on-off electrical switch in the middle of the transistor. Then they found it would amplify and do lots of other electrical things replacing the tubes in TVs and etc. Transistors ran cool and needed a fraction of the power to operate.
Some Engineer at Texas Instruments came up with etching or printing a photo etched circuit onto a thin quarter size silicon wafer including many transistors. The wafer was carefully cut up and made into many IC's. This became the integrated circuit also advanced by Fairchild Semiconductor corp. That technology really took off over the years and now we have about a billion transistors in just one rather fast 3.4 ghz CPU.
Today our TVs are made up of many small IC's and a fast CPU. (processor) This eliminates most of the capacitors that used to fail due to heat in the tube sets. They still use some capacitors in today's solid states sets to filter and regulate the power supply.
I'm glad I got to live in this 'Electronic World'. Seeing all these advancements from the old tube days is absolutely amazing to me.
My dad in the old days took me to a saturday matinee. We walked out of the theater as I was looking into the display window of a western auto store next to the theater. I ask my dad what was that radio with a small screen on the front. My dad said, son that's something new where you can see the man as he gives the news. Boy did that ever take off in the early 50's. This pic below looks just like the first TV I ever saw though that window.
Did you know the early 1949/50 sets cost around $1000. As they grew popular the price dropped to $500 around 1953. The RCA color sets came out in '56 and was much improved with their '57 Deluxe version. Costly though at around $750. Zenith a very popular brand back then held off till 1963 and came out with more perfected and a much improved color set around $695. I bought one and it went though 3 families and it's 20 or more years of total use with just a few tubes replacements and one bad filter capacitor I had replaced over all those years.
Steve that old set was so old a friend of mine that last bought it ask me to drop by that it had went out. He had owned it for like 8 years. I removed the back and saw the convergence magnets plastic holder was so dried out from heat that it just fell off the neck of the picture tube. Those magnets are what lined up the red, green, and blue dots to give a sharp picture on the old CRT sets. I told my friend this set just died and you need to buy a new one which he did.
I remember angrily seeing these stupid test patterns during play of some of the big NFL Championship games like between green bay and dallas back in the early 60's. Some said cable cut. lol This was many years before any satellite network feeds were available to the local TV stations.