Chapter 2

Innovation: Making A Change in the World

As we have seen, the microprocessor has enabled a multitude of digital products—from interactive computers to mobile phones, toys, kitchen appliances, and much else besides. Information processing, the most fundamental property of digital products, has become a new material with which it is possible to build a seemingly unlimited number of functions, many of which were unthinkable with only mechanical and analog technology. And given Moore’s law, the best may very well be ahead of us; as chips become ever smaller and cheaper, it becomes feasible to build artifacts that provide functions that would have been impossible only a few years ago.

But who comes up with these new functions anyway? And ...

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