Carver Mead

Digital Library

ACM AAAI Allen Newell Award

USA - 1997


Carver Mead has made a large number of diverse and seminal contributions to computing through the development of semiconductors, their design, and specific, archetypal chip designs including an artificial retina and cochlea through pioneering digital, analog, and neural computing techniques. He has played a key role in technology transfer as an entrepreneurial founder of companies to utilize the technology he created.

This work was followed by his impressive treatise and methodology for analog chip circuitry design. His talents are both broad and very deep, and range from neurology in the form of various chips for the first artificial retina and cochlea, to original chip architectures, to the fundamental design of new semiconducting devices. His earliest work includes the first working GaAs MESFET. Most of these inventions were solely his, followed by co-work with graduate students. He has created a cadre of graduate students who have made the U.S. semiconductor industry great and unsurpassed. Similarly, he has worked with many companies in the startup phase, including Intel Corporation, and the founding of Silicon Compilers (part of Mentor Graphics), and Synaptics to guide their technology.