What is the critical role microchips play across society? At Intel Vision 2023, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger discussed the subject with Chris Miller, author of “Chip War: The Fight for the World’s Most Critical Technology.” Their conversation ranged from the ubiquity of semiconductors in modern devices to how chips shape the balance of power to why an unbalanced global supply chain creates risk.
How did Miller, a Russian history professor, end up writing a book about the semiconductor industry? “I started actually planning to write a book on the evolution of defense technology, where semiconductors are obviously very important. And I came to realize that actually people who don’t work in the chip industry, like myself, really underestimate the critical role chips play across society,” Miller said.
“Today, chips are one of the most widely traded goods internationally,” he said, “and so I think you can’t understand the world today without putting semiconductors at the center.”
Near the end of the conversation, Gelsinger asked for Miller’s thoughts on Intel. “What advice have you got for me?”
Recognizing Intel’s critical role in the semiconductor industry – including Intel co-founder Bob Noyce and the invention of some of the first integrated circuits – Miller said: “Any company that has this legacy like Intel’s on one hand, has this extraordinarily rich legacy to draw on; on the other hand, it has to constantly be challenging itself to reinvent itself on a regular basis.”