Who was Gordon Moore?
Moore and his longtime colleague Robert Noyce founded Intel in July 1968. Moore initially served as executive vice president until 1975, when he became president. In 1979, Moore was named chairman of the board and chief executive officer, positions he held until 1987, when he resigned as chief executive officer and continued as chairman. In 1997 Moore became Chairman Emeritus, resigning in 2006.
During his life, Moore also devoted his focus and energy to philanthropy, particularly environmental conservation, science, and improvements in patient care. Together with his wife of 72 years, he established the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, which has donated more than $5.1 billion to charitable causes since its founding in 2000.
Prior to establishing Intel, Moore and Noyce were involved in founding Fairchild Semiconductor, where they played central roles in the first commercial production of silicon transistors and later the first commercially integrated circuits.
The two had previously worked together with William Shockley, co-inventor of the transistor and founder of Shockley Semiconductor, which was the first semiconductor company established in what would become Silicon Valley. After striking out on their own, Moore and Noyce hired future Intel CEO Andy Grove as their third employee, and the three of them built Intel into one of the world’s great companies. Together they became known as the “Intel Trinity” and their legacy continues today.
Industry reactions to Moore’s death
Pat Gelsinger, CEO of Intel, said: “Gordon Moore defined the technology industry through his insight and vision. He was instrumental in revealing the power of transistors and inspiring technologists and entrepreneurs throughout the decades. At Intel we continue to be inspired by Moore’s Law and intend to apply it until the periodic table is exhausted.”
For his part, the current CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, pointed out that “the world lost a giant, Gordon Moore was one of the founding fathers of Silicon Valley and a true visionary who helped pave the way for the technological revolution. All of us who follow him owe him a debt of gratitude. Rest in peace”.
For his part, Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet, noted that Gordon “inspired many of us to dedicate ourselves to technology, he was an inspiration to me.”