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[bit-tech] The hidden art inside microchips

post #1 of 17
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Quote:
If you've ever wondered what a microchip looks like up-close, then you'll be amazed and surprised by the discovery that chip designers hide teeny-tiny works of art on the surface of common components.

The Molecular Expressions team has spent quite a few years building up a digital zoo of hidden artwork on common microchip designs. The images are so small that they are only visible via photomicrography – literally, the use of a microscope to take photographs.

There's some pretty impressive stuff hidden away in your CPU and GPU, too. Swords, migrating buffalo, a smurf, and the Playboy Bunny even makes an appearance.

Although the artwork is mostly used as a way for chip designers to show off their talents and stamp their individuality onto a chip, they can also serve a more serious purpose. Should a competitor copy your design and make their own, the artwork would be duplicated at the same time. Make the artwork personal to you or your company and you've got a sure-fire way of proving that the design is original to you.

I'll warn you now: the site is addictive. With so many images to hand, and with fascinating back stories for most, you can get yourself lost in the Lilliputian world of processor microphotography. Either that, or I need to get out more.

Source
post #2 of 17
Awesome!

I thought we were suppose to have flat dies though...
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post #3 of 17
Is that some kind of Barbarian?

I thought there'd be a pic of Jesus on it and we could all call it a holy miracle
    
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post #4 of 17
I've seen this long time ago and totally forgot about it.

Thanks!

http://www.news.com/2300-1006-5887476.html
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post #5 of 17
Did anyone else try to go to the gallery in the source and find themselves just running in circles between two pages?
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post #6 of 17
Has anyone found Waldo yet?


I forget which chip he's on...
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post #7 of 17
the phenom
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post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mootsfox View Post
Awesome!

I thought we were suppose to have flat dies though...
If those pics are microscopic enough, I doubt it would have too big of an impact on heat transfer.

So when I lap my IHS, does that mean I'm getting rid of art? Oh well, I think I'd rather skip the microscopic art and get the lower temps!
    
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post #9 of 17
Yeah, a link to the actual site/s with the photos of the art would be helpful. The site that I managed to get to is far from intuitive. http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/index.html
    
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post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by ted View Post
Did anyone else try to go to the gallery in the source and find themselves just running in circles between two pages?
I was running in cirlces...that website isn't the greatest to navigate.
 
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