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Essential Guide to Semiconductors, The by Jim Turley

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Medium-Scale Digital Chips

Once engineers discovered that transistors could be used as on/off switches for electricity, a whole new field of digital electronics was born. Digital components work by treating electricity as if it were Morse code. Instead of dots and dashes, digital components switch tiny amounts of electricity on and off. Other digital components receiving these transmissions can decode them, like a telegraph operator receiving a telegram. A string of digital components working together can create long chains of elaborate functions as each link adds its ability to that of the others. With enough of these links you can create seemingly intelligent electronic devices, such as computers.

Certain combinations of transistors were useful ...

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