Rare phenomenons in computer science hardware…

FadinGeek
3 min readMay 16, 2023

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Hey there, buckle up and get ready for a wild ride into the wacky world of computer science hardware! You may think that computer hardware is just a bunch of boring circuits and wires, but let me tell you, there are some rare phenomena that will blow your mind!

Photo by Alexandre Debiève on Unsplash

Let’s start with Single-event upset (SEU). Back in the day, when computer chips were first being developed, engineers had no idea that cosmic rays could cause data corruption. But one day, a group of scientists was working on a super important project when suddenly, their data went haywire. They were freaking out until one of them looked up and saw a UFO hovering outside the window. Yep, you read that right, an alien spaceship had caused an SEU! Needless to say, that project was never completed.

Next up, we have electromigration. This phenomenon was actually discovered by accident by a scientist who was trying to develop a new type of cheese. He accidentally left a block of cheese on a metal surface while it was conducting electricity, and when he came back, he noticed that the metal had degraded. He realized that the flow of electrical current had caused the atoms in the metal to move, and thus, electromigration was born!

Now, let’s talk about thermal runaway. This one has a bit of a tragic backstory. Back in the 1800s, a group of engineers were working on developing the world’s first computer. They were using a steam-powered engine to generate the electricity needed to power the machine, but one day, the engine overheated and caused a thermal runaway. The machine exploded, killing all of the engineers. It was a tragic loss, but their work was not in vain, as it laid the foundation for modern computing.

Moving on, we have quantum tunneling. This phenomenon was actually first discovered by a group of hippies in the 1960s. They were experimenting with LSD and stumbled upon the concept of particles passing through barriers. They tried to build a computer based on this principle but quickly realized that they were too high to do so. But their discovery did pave the way for further research into quantum computing.

Finally, we have silicon whiskers. This one is actually kind of cute because silicon whiskers are like little hairs that grow on computer hardware. Scientists have tried to study them, but they keep getting distracted by how adorable they are. Some even keep them as pets!

So there you have it folks, a wild and wacky journey through the world of computer science hardware! Who knew that cheese, aliens, and LSD would all play a role in the development of modern computing?

You’re Awesome :)

FadinGeek

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FadinGeek

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