Antique Finish coin produced with a real MICROCHIP (OPT101P) inlay. WORLD PREMIERE!
ART MINT (France)/ Lithuanian mint
Description of obverse and reverse
The reverse of the coin features the pattern typical of a microprocessor in High Relief. Microprocessors contain the arithmetic, logic and control circuitry required to perform the functions of a computer’s central processing unit. At the center of the coin, a real microprocessor has been inserted. All around, the inscriptions: “50° ANNIVERSARY OF MICROPROCESSOR” – the name of the coin.
The obverse of the coin features the effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at the centre of a cyber pattern. All around, the inscriptions: “NIUE” – the country of issue, “FIVE DOLLARS” – the face value, “2021” – the year of issue and “ELIZABETH II” – the name of the Queen.
A brief annotation
With a small ad in the magazine Electronic News on 15 November 1971, Intel launched its first commercially available CPU (central processing unit) - the Intel 4004.
CPUs, or microprocessors, are the chips at the heart of your computer, phone, TV and dozens of other household and industrial devices. Originally built to power the Japenese-built Busicom 141-PF calculator, Intel persuaded Busicom, who actually owned the design, to allow them to let them sell the chip commercially. It was a huge success, leading eventually to the 8088 chip which powered the IBM PC and its clones. The Intel 4004 had 2,300 transistors, could make 1,200 calculations per second and was made from one single piece of silicon, a breakthrough that had eluded others trying to make CPUs. Since the days of the Intel 4004, CPU design has made massive leaps forward.
The continued increase in chip capability, along with ongoing reductions in size and power requirements, mean that microprocessors can now be put in almost any device you can think of.
But the changes we've witnessed over the last 50 years are just the beginning, as we find more and more uses for these tiny little slivers of clever silicon.