We note the accomplishments and results of engineers and scientists here at Electronic Design, but it is always difficult when they pass away (see “In Honor of an Electrical Engineer” on electronicdesign.com). Andrew S. Grove, former CEO and Chairman of Intel, is one of those who recently passed away at the age of 79, leaving a legacy in science and engineering. Andy Grove was an Electronic Design 2002 Hall of Fame Honor Roll honoree.
Andy Grove was Hungarian-born and he escaped Communist-controlled Hungary at the age of 20. He was the first hire at Intel, joining the founders, Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore. Andy Grove was Intel’s President starting in 1979 and then CEO in 1987. He served as Chairman of the Board for Intel from 1997 to 2005. Grove wrote a number of best-selling books (see “Andy Grove Has A Few Thousand Words About American Jobs” on electronicdesign.com), 40 technical papers, and was a speaker on many prominent public issues. His first book was released in 1967 on semiconductors entitled Physics and Technology of Semiconductor Devices. He taught graduate computer physics courses at the University of California, Berkeley, and at Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
Many will rightly hail his work at Intel and the furthering of technology in the electronics industry. He was at Intel when it became the powerhouse behind the PC era and the Internet. He negotiated with IBM to use only Intel microprocessors in all their new PCs. Intel microprocessors are the force behind “the Cloud.” He helped transform Intel from a manufacturer of memory chips, its initial area of expertise, into the dominant producers of microprocessors.
I wanted to highlight another aspect of Andy's involvement with science and engineering, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) that is now managed by the Society for Science & the Public (SSP). He was speaker at many of the fairs during his tenure at Intel, which still sponsors the fair. The next one will occur this May in Phoenix, Ariz., where the top award is the Gordon E. Moore award. I will be taking two students from the Mercer Science and Engineering Fair (MSEF) to compete this year.
The grand-prize winner at MSEF was Nikhil Gopal, a 10th grade student at the Lawrenceville School. His project, Point of Care Testing for Malaria Using a Smartphone and a Microfluidic ELISA System, combines chemistry, microfluidics, and an smartphone app to greatly reduce the cost of tracking malaria testing.
James Gow took first place in Animal Sciences and was the first runner-up with the project, Testing Valproate and Surfanct Regulation as Potential Therapeutics for Nitrogen Mustard-Mediated Lung Injury in Wistar Rats. It explores technology that can be used in relation to cancer treatments and chemical warfare.
It always helps when science and engineering fair supporters understand the importance of scientists and engineers. Grove was a real engineer who was perfectly at home wandering the floor of the fair talking with students. His favorite saying was, "The devil is in the details."
He gave an interview to Esquire magazine in May 2000, “What I've Learned: Andy Grove”, where he encouraged America to be "vigilant as a nation to have tolerance for difference, a tolerance for new people." He noted that immigration and immigrants are what made America what it is today.
He will be missed.