A massive collection of traditional art from every corner of the world resides at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met)
, also in New York City. Among museums of any ilk, this is the museum of museums
. The Met
has a vast collection of antiquity. The museum houses, for example, an entire Egyptian Tomb, a hall full of Medieval armor, a Chinese Garden, and some fine works of Korean art. Both The Met
are treasures of inspiration for all humankind
Printed circuit boards
have greatly helped to reduce the size of electronic equipment. The term "printed circuit" derives from use of photo-printing
techniques used in newspaper and magazine printing.
Wires between components in 1950s-era radios or television receivers filled much of the functional space in the device. In the 1960s, wires were replaced by thin copper traces, i.e. wires, that were printed or etched onto a thin copper sheet that was cemented onto one side of the board, which we can call the "bottom-side" of a printed circuit board> (PCB) (the green lines appearing in the picture above). Individual electronic parts, for example resistors and capacitors, were placed on the "topside" of the board (see the inset in the pop-out information) box.
Boards often have specific functions, for example: sound card, graphics card, and Ethernet cards. The board shown on the right is the bottom-side of a video card, or graphics adapter, that is inserted into "slots" on a "motherboard", or "main board".
Just about any machine, nowadays, that does something useful has a printed-circuit board. When viewing the backside of a board, an array of interconnecting strips run around the board in an ordered, well-considered pattern. These patterns are quite functional, yet possess a kind of aesthetic form.
Semiconductor chip design also reveals a form of visual art that bridges the domains of art and functionality. This particular chip is used for speech recognition, image analysis, robotics, and radar.
represent a leap from wires printed on a printed circuit board to wires of microscopic dimensions formed on a thin wafer of silicon (SO2)
, also known as sand
. Semiconductor chips are now constructed in "nanometer"
Topside view of Apple's A5X chip: the A5X was used as the central processing unit (CPU), the brain, in some iPads. Apple's A5, A5X, and A6 chips, as well as several other Apple-designed chips, were manufactured by Samsung of Korea. The newer Apple A7 chip, which was also manufactured by Samsung, is about a 1,000 times smaller than early calculator CPU chips of the 1970s, but is incredibly faster and infinitely more functional. Ironically, these two titans of industry for years have been locked in legal battles over reciprocal claims of patent infringement.
dimensions (nine zeros, 1 × 10-9)
. When viewed under a microscope, chips also reveal a form of artistic imagery.
Because of the very small, microscopic scale of modern chip fabrication, chips can have many functional units. Most of the squares in the image on the (left) are functional units that perform specific tasks, while many of the thin lines are microscopic "wires".
Art and Nature