Chapter 1

Understanding Digital Products

The most profound technical revolution of the past 50 years is the digital revolution. The theoretical and practical groundwork for computing was laid in the 1940s and 1950s, but the basic building block of computer-based products was invented only a few decades ago. In November 1971, Intel Corporation introduced the Intel 404, generally regarded as the first microprocessor. Integrating all the vital components of a computer’s central processing unit onto a single silicon chip greatly reduced the cost of production, paving the way for the ever-increasing speed and ever-decreasing cost of computation that we take for granted today. This is the foundation of digital products—products that partly or wholly ...

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