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In 1912, as the HMS Titanic was going down, Sarnoff was involved with using early radio equipment to transmit information about the ship’s demise. (Hulton-Deutsch Collection / Corbis)

Before Steve Jobs: 5 Corporate Innovators who Shaped Our World

The former head of Apple comes from a long line of American innovators who changed society

Bob Noyce and Gordon Moore

Bob Noyce and Gordon Moore
(Intel Photos)

No innovators have been as responsible for the brute technological horsepower that enabled the information technology revolution as Noyce, right, and Moore, founders of Intel. In the early 1970s, they created the first successful commercial microprocessors, and the company has remained the premier computer hardware supplier ever since.

“They were always focused on getting more and more capability onto chips: smaller, cheaper, much more powerful,” says Allison. “Their belief was that if they got the technology better and better, it would be adopted.” The Intel chips that power today’s PCs and handheld devices are a testament to their foresight.

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