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Historia e información del primer microprocesador, Intel c4004
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Web creada y mantenida por Fernando Benito
fer @ fer . nu




Although the 4004 offered an outstanding ratio between price and efficiency the chip could not compete with the real computers during 1971. Since it could just manage 4 bits at once the 4004 was much slower and less powerful than a state of the art central processing unit of a computer.

Intel had been commited by Nippon Calculating Machine Corporation (later Busicom) to develop a chip family for a calculator - the Busicom 141-PF.

Four main persons were involved in this project:

Federic Faggin: developed the silicon gate MOS technology and was the head
                        of the 4004 team; he designed the complete chip layout of the
                        4000 series (and of 8008 / 8080 as well); Faggin left Intel at the
                        end of 1974 to build up a new semiconductor company - Zilog.

Stan Mazor: added some instructions to the chip architecture and designed
                   program specimen to check the feasibility of the whole chip design.
                   He was also responsible for the interface communication between
                   different departments and other contact partners.

Masatoshi Shima: designed the controller chip, its logic and the arrangement of
                            circuits on the 4004 logic

Ted Hoff: initiated the 4004 concept (instead of a chip series); proposed the
              alternative to build a complete new programmable processor unit instead
              of the chip serie demanded by Busicom; the chip should be used for
              several purposes depending on the implemented programs; he designed
              the basic architecture (CPU, RAM, ROM and I/O) and the logic.

Bob Noyce, chairman of Intel, managed to change the licence agreement between Intel and Busicom on payment of $ 60,000. Intel got the rights on the chip design and to build in the 4004 into other computers as well. In view of the starting processor industry Busicoms decision was one of the most serious management mistakes made by a company. 



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