Well have you? Be honest, have you ever heard of Robert Noyce? It seems odd today that such an influential person could be forgotten. Robert Noyce was one of the founders of Intel, a mentor to Steve Jobs, and overall, a realy nice guy. Back in the 50s Noyce was working for a company called the Philco Corporation. In 1956 he left and joined the Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory. However in 1957, he, along with 7 others (nicknamed "The traitorous eight") left the company because of poor management. They went on to create the Fairchild Semiconductor Corp. In what would become Silicon Valley. Now to you and me this might seem like a usual event. However in their day, breaking away from one company to form a totally new one was unheard of. For this reason Noyce inspired a generation of entrepreneurs.
In 1968 Noyce and his partner, Gordon Moore, left to found Intel, the massive technology company. You may of heard of Moore's law (the idea that every 18 months the number of transistors on a chip will double), yeah - that's the guy. Noyce rejected private jets, flash cars and all the other fancy luxuries that are usually associated with successful CEOs and set a new trend for new CEOs.
But perhaps the most amazing (co)invention of Noyce's was the Integrated Circuit. A what?! I hear you ask. The integrated circuit is what you see inside of computers and electronic devices - that green board with bits of metal and wires coming out of it? That's the one. Without this computer would be 100s of times bigger and therefore far behind.
Now I know this article isn't the most interesting, but I believe it's important to remember Robert Noyce for his contributions to the technology industry. He was a personal friend of Steve Jobs, he was the first of his kind, and he was an amazing guy!