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Electronics are a gateway technology leading to computers.

  • They enable and make possible advanced, pre-intelligent machinery and devices.
  • Later, more advanced versions and electronics create increasingly more advanced computers and other Information Technology devices.

Description (Specifications)[edit]

Electronics comprises the physics, engineering, technology and applications that deal with the emission, flow and control of electrons in vacuum and matter. Electronics deals with electrical circuits that involve active electrical components such as vacuum tubes, transistors, diodes, integrated circuits, optoelectronics, and sensors, associated passive electrical components, and interconnection technologies. Commonly, electronic devices contain circuitry consisting primarily or exclusively of active semiconductors supplemented with passive elements; such a circuit is described as an electronic circuit.

An electronic component is any physical entity in an electronic system used to affect the electrons or their associated fields in a manner consistent with the intended function of the electronic system. Components are generally intended to be connected together, usually by being soldered to a printed circuit board (PCB), to create an electronic circuit with a particular function (for example an amplifier, radio receiver, or oscillator). Components may be packaged singly, or in more complex groups as integrated circuits. Some common electronic components are capacitors, inductors, resistors, diodes, transistors, etc. Components are often categorized as active (e.g. transistors and thyristors) or passive (e.g. resistors, diodes, inductors and capacitors).

Specialized Uses[edit]

Many kinds of specialized electronics exist including:

  • Astronics, specialized for interstellar navigational calculations and operation through the vacuum. Astronics are usually implemented in the form of an Astrogation Computer, often simply called a navigation computer.
  • Avionics, specialized for aircraft operation within a gaseous atmosphere. Avionics are usually implemented in the form of a Flight Computer.

Moore's Law[edit]

Moore's law is the observation that the number of transistors in a dense integrated circuit doubles about every two years. The observation is named after Gordon Moore, an ancient Terran human, who wrote paper described a doubling every year in the number of components per integrated circuit and projected this rate of growth would continue for at least another decade. Moore's prediction proved accurate for several decades and was once used in the semiconductor industry to guide long-term planning and to set targets for research and development. Advancements in TL:7-9 digital electronics were once strongly linked to Moore's law. Moore's law describes a driving force of technological and social change, productivity, and economic growth. Moore's law is an observation and projection of a historical trend and not a physical or natural law.

Eventually, manufacturing paradigms for electronics technology changed the law which no longer held true. Advanced biotech, nanotech, and makertech changed the nature of electronics.

History & Background (Dossier)[edit]

Information Technology, computers, and electronics are foundational technologies for Charted Space. Technologists and Educational Institute officers generally group these developments into technological epochs and periods.

Technological Overview of Electronics[edit]

Electronics Generations:

  1. Analogue Electronics (TL:4-6)
  2. Macroelectronics (TL:4-6) (Conventional Electronics or Digital Electronics)
  3. Microelectronics (TL:7-9)
  4. Optoelectronics (TL:10-12)
  5. Myelotronics (TL:13-15)
  6. Claytronics (TL:16-18)
  7. Nanotronics (TL:19-21)
  8. Fuzzy Electronics (TL:19-21)
  9. Atomtronics (TL:22-24)
  10. Psychotronics (TL:25-27)

Technological Stages of Electronic Development[edit]

Information Age Societies (Calculative Electronics)[edit]

Technological Period: TL:1-9 and Tech-Name: Ur-Tech
Common Characteristics: Digital Networks, High scarcity, Prototype Nanotech, Calculative ("Calculating machines"), Automatons, Low Autonomous Robots, etc.
Tech Epoch TL-Range Remarks
Tool Making Epoch TL:1-3 COMPUTERS: The abacus and the quipu represent early calculating tech. they are simple, mechanical processors that help a sophont keep large numbers of calculations in memory. Mathematics makes great leaps forward with the development of algebra, trigonometry, and calculus.
Division of Labor Epoch TL:4-6 COMPUTERS: The first solid state electronics appear in this tech epoch and are gradually electrified. Very limited electronics and simple circuits become available, but are rarely able to mainstream into consumer and military goods except in a limited fashion.
Processor Epoch TL:7-9 COMPUTERS: Workable electronics generally become widely available in the TL:7-9 epoch. Miniaturized Electronics appear in this period and are dubbed microelectronics. Chips and circuit boards are gradually miniaturized leading to incredible computing capabilities in very small devices such as handcomps.

Bright Age Societies (Bright Electronics)[edit]

Technological Period: TL:10-18 and Tech-Name: Stell-Tech
Common Characteristics: Intelligent Networks, Low Scarcity, Weak nanotech, Synaptic processors, Positronic Brains, Cognitive ("Thinking machines"), High Autonomous Robots, etc.
Tech Epoch TL-Range Remarks
Gravitics Epoch TL:10-12 COMPUTERS: The computers of this area revolutionize society allowing smart devices, intelligent city controllers, and mainstreamed interstellar travel: Jumpliners.
Biologicals Epoch TL:13-15 COMPUTERS: Cutting edge electronics at the TL:13-15 are often unrecognizable to earlier peoples. They often make use of subatomic microelectronic components, dedicated nanotechnology, or even organic components or biotech. Many scientists and futorologists assume that the trend of paradigmatic change will hold and the future kinds of electronics in advanced artifacts may be near unrecognizable to TL:13-15 societies.
Artificials Epoch TL:16-18 COMPUTERS: Current research into the Hop Drive will undoubtedly yield new kinds of Ship's Computers and vastly improved capabilities for FTL transportation. Current technologists and futurists are anticipating a paradigm change.

Brilliant Age Societies (Brilliant Electronics)[edit]

Technological Period: TL:19-27 and Tech-Name: Ultra-Tech
Common Characteristics: Delegative Rule (AI), Post-Scarcity, Strong nanotech, Emotive ("Dreaming or Feeling machines"), Self-Aware Robots, etc.
Tech Epoch TL-Range Remarks
Matter Transport Epoch, Transformations Epoch, and Psionics Epoch TL:19-21, TL:22-24, and TL:25-27 COMPUTERS: Some Imperial scientists have quietly made the observation that psionic science may underlay future societal and technological developments. True Artificial Intelligence is another widely anticipated factor. It is anticipated that true artificial intelligence, thinking, feeling machines whose capabilities may exceed organic sophont minds may coalesce over this tech period, the Ultra Period.

Beyond Brilliance[edit]

Technological Period: TL:28-30 & TL:31-33 and Tech-Name: Dei-Tech & Omni-Tech
Common Characteristics: Delegative Rule (AI), Post-Scarcity, Strong nanotech, Emotive ("Dreaming or Feeling machines"), Self-Aware Robots, etc.
Tech Epoch TL-Range Remarks
Transcendent Epoch & Ascendant Epoch TL:28-30 & TL:31-33 COMPUTERS: Even futurists have a hard time guessing what form electronics will take these tech epochs or even whether they will exist at all.

See also[edit]



Information Technology[edit]

References & Contributors (Sources)[edit]

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This list of sources was used by the Traveller Wiki Editorial Team and individual contributors to compose this article. Copyrighted material is used under license from Far Future Enterprises or by permission of the author. The page history lists all of the contributions.