IC may refer to any of the following:
1. Alternatively referred to as a bare chip, monolithic integrated circuit, or microchip, IC is short for integrated circuit or integrated chip. The IC is a package containing silicon with many circuits, logic gates, pathways, transistors, and other components working together to perform a particular function or series of functions. Integrated circuits are the building blocks of computer hardware.
The picture shows an example of several integrated circuits. Because the IC is fragile, it's often encased in a plastic package with metal pins extending out of it to connect to a circuit board. An IC may be packaged as SIP (single in-line package), DIP (dual in-line package), PLCC (plastic leaded chip carrier), or another type.
When was the IC first created?
The integrated circuit was first introduced as a concept by British radar engineer Geoffrey Dummer on May 7, 1952. IC technology was later developed by Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce, and successfully demonstrated on September 12, 1958.
Integrated circuit generations
Since their creation, there are many generations of integrated circuits with increases to the number of transistors and logic gates per chip. Below is a list of each generation and the approximate capacity of each chip.
- SSI (small-scale integration) - 1 to 10 transistors and 1 to 12 logic gates.
- MSI (medium-scale integration) - 10 to 500 transistors and 13 to 99 logic gates.
- LSI (large-scale integration) - 500 to 20,000 transistors and 100 to 9,999 logic gates.
- VLSI (very-large-scale integration) - 20,000 to 1,000,000 transistors and 10,000 to 99,999 logic gates.
- ULSI (ultra-large-scale integration) - over 1,000,000 transistors and 100,000 logic gates.
What devices use ICs today?
Because integrated circuits are so versatile, they are incorporated in the majority of today's electronic devices, including:
- Computers and peripherals, like keyboards and mice.
- Headphones, speakers, and microphones.
- Smartphones and tablets.
- Wearables, like smartwatches.
- Smart speakers, like Amazon Echo or Google Home.
- Digital photo and video cameras.
- Video game consoles and controllers.
- Infotainment systems in vehicles.
- Smart home LED lights or wall outlets.
3. In chat rooms, IC is shorthand for I see. It may also be abbreviated as OIC, which is short for Oh I See. Below is an example of how this could be used in chat.
User1: What does CPU mean?
User2: Central Processing Unit