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Arts, Science

Chip art

Posted by Hannah / January 2, 2006

dinosaur.jpg There just may be an artist's canvas lurking inside your computer. For years microchip engineers have secretly etched tiny skulls, robots, horses and dinosaurs onto the silicon of these semiconductors. Ottawa-based Chipworks, a reverse engineering and patent intlligence firm, has caught many of these works of art on film by magnifying the chip as many as 5,000 times. Todd Jastras writes in the December issue of Wired :

Sadly, it's a disappearing art form. As manufacturing becomes more automated, would-be Leonardos have dwindling opportuntities to express themselves. Whereas half of all chips used to be decorated, now only two in 10 are.

Check out Chipworks' galleries here.

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