During the first 50 years of the American Vacuum Society (1953–2003), technology has advanced greatly. But the most impressive and conspicuous advance has been in computational power, due to the exponential increase in computing power at an exponentially decreasing cost per function. Many of our readers will remember the “Macro-Mechanical System” called a slide rule that was symbolic of engineers and scientists in the 1950s and 1960s. From the slide rule of the past to today’s desktop and notebook computers, possessing speed, storage, and power capability that dwarf the mainframes of the recent past, what a transformation!

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