Electronics deals with electrical circuits that involve active electrical components such as vacuum tubes, transistors, diodes and integrated circuits, and associated passive interconnection technologies. The nonlinear behaviour of active components and their ability to control electron flows makes amplification of weak signals possible and electronics is widely used in information processing, telecommunications and signal processing. The ability of electronic devices to act as switches makes digital information processing possible. Interconnection technologies such as circuit boards, electronics packaging technology, and other varied forms of communication infrastructure complete circuit functionality and transform the mixed components into a working system.
Electronics is distinct from electrical and electro-mechanical science and technology, which deals with the generation, distribution, switching, storage and conversion of electrical energy to and from other energy forms using wires, motors, generators, batteries, switches, relays, transformers, resistors and other passive components. This distinction started around 1906 with the invention by Lee De Forest of the triode, which made electrical amplification of weak radio signals and audio signals possible with a non-mechanical device. Until 1950 this field was called "radio technology" because its principal application was the design and theory of radio transmitters, receivers and vacuum tubes.
Today, most electronic devices use semiconductor components to perform electron control. The study of semiconductor devices and related technology is considered a branch of solid state physics, whereas the design and construction of electronic circuits to solve practical problems come under electronics engineering. This article focuses on engineering aspects of electronics.
Read more about Electronics: Electronic Devices and Components, Early Electronic Components, Types of Circuits, Heat Dissipation and Thermal Management, Noise, Electronics Theory, Electronics Lab, Computer Aided Design (CAD), Construction Methods
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Famous quotes containing the words electrical and/or electronics:
“Few speeches which have produced an electrical effect on an audience can bear the colourless photography of a printed record.”
—Archibald Philip Primrose, 5th Earl Rosebery (18471929)
“We live in a highly industrialized society and every member of the Black nation must be as academically and technologically developed as possible. To wage a revolution, we need competent teachers, doctors, nurses, electronics experts, chemists, biologists, physicists, political scientists, and so on and so forth. Black women sitting at home reading bedtime stories to their children are just not going to make it.”
—Frances Beale, African American feminist and civil rights activist. The Black Woman, ch. 14 (1970)