The word “electronics” commands many meanings. In the dictionary, the word is defined as the branch of physics and technology focusing on the design and implementation of systems with transistors and microchips, as well as, the behaviour and movement of electrons. However, consumer electronics is also applied to gadgets and devices used today, such as smartphones, tablets and computers.
In fact, the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show, expected to draw 150,000 attendees, was run from January 6 until January 9 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Some of the most interesting items on display were a remote control glove for wirelessly controlled motors, a calorie counting wrist sensor, smart clothing which tracks exercise intensity, amazing cars, a beer brewing system and, perhaps most fascinating of all, a virtual reality set.
The virtual reality system, called the Vive, is offered by HTC. Vive can transform your living room into a scene from your imagination, or almost. What is more, the user is able to interact with multiple items, animals or digital people in the virtual world. The novel Vive allows for a more true-to-life experience with the addition of several new features. Now, the user can experience virtual reality by walking, for example, which surely upgrades the experience from sitting down.
Electronics design refers to the work done by engineers in the field. An electronic system typically consists of active semiconductors and passive elements. The word electronics deals with the science behind most of today’s electronic devices. Interestingly enough, electronics is distinct from electrical or electro-mechanical fields, in that it does not concern itself with the generation of electricity. The field was called radio technology until 1950.
Electronics remains widely used in signal processing, information processing and telecommunication. To date, the field of electronics branches out into several disciplines: digital electronics, analogue electronics, microelectronics, optoelectronics, circuit design, integrated circuit, semiconductor and semiconductor device. Electronic components refer to any physical entity in an electronic system which controls electron flow, as per the intended functioning of said system.
Evidently, a lot can be said about electronics. Indeed, the technological field is so vast that most of it is beyond the scope of the present short entry. Still, we hope that the article above gives some insight about the meaning of electronics in today’s day and age.
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Illustration: Megan Jorgensen