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The Current State of Solid State

Back in second grade, I was hopelessly seduced by a magazine ad for what seemed to be a miracle: a fully functional radio in a package not much larger than two packs of my dad’s filterless Camels. Before then, a radio was a large thing, possibly in a wooden case, powered by small vacuum tubes.

So how did this unknown Japanese company, probably named Sony, manage to cram an entire radio into such a compact box? Well, it used these then newfangled things called transistors instead of bulky, fragile glass tubes to make the thing work.

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