Electronics & Beyond (March 2001)

Written by: Pete Luckhurst



Time to read 1 min

The March 2001 issue of "Electronics & Beyond" delves into the complexities of designing multi-million transistor processor chips, highlighting the evolution of electronic design automation (EDA). It features an intriguing development in neuroscience with a remotely operated robotic arm controlled by a monkey's brain, emphasizing the intersection of biology and robotics. The issue also presents DIY electronics projects, including a 20-second sound recorder and an improved mobile antenna design that addresses health concerns related to mobile phone radiation. Cutting-edge research on nanocrystal quantum dot lasers offers insights into the future of tunable lasers and optical devices. The magazine further expands its scope to include the theory of color in electronic design, challenging the traditional confines of art and design. Additionally, it revisits semiconductor history with a look at early theory proposals and patents, providing a rich context for current advancements.

Table of Contents:


  1. Electronics Design Comes of Age: An overview of the challenges and milestones in electronic design automation (EDA) industry.
  2. Monkeying Around: A report on the use of a monkey's brain to control a robotic arm, highlighting advances in neuroscience and robotics.
  3. Understanding Colour: Explores the significance of color knowledge beyond art, for engineers in graphics programming and optoelectronic design.
  4. Technology Watch: Discusses the emerging use of superconductors in the electrical power industry, potentially revolutionizing power transmission.


  1. 20 Second Sound Recorder: Instructions for building a solid-state sound recording module, suitable for beginners and hobbyists.
  2. Improved Mobile Antenna: A new development aimed at reducing mobile phone radiation exposure, with implications for public health.
  3. RS232 to 20 Port Adaptor Part 1: A project enabling control of stepper motors, lighting, and other options via a mouse-driven menu.

Research and Innovation:

  1. Research News: The latest on nanocrystal quantum dot lasers, promising advancements in tunable lasers, optical amplifiers, and LEDs.
  2. Flat Screens: Examination of the future of display technology, assessing the potential leaders in this rapidly evolving market.
  3. Entangled Photons: Investigating the potential for smaller, faster computer chips through novel fabrication techniques.
  4. Bending Infrared Light: Introducing a technique that could replace electronic chips with faster, cooler photonic chips, altering signal direction.

Practical Electronics:

  1. Op Amp Cookbook Part 1: A new series introducing practical operational amplifier circuits for beginners.

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About the author

Pete Luckhurst is a Website Manager at Maplin.

After getting an early start in the world of computing with C64 & Amiga computers, Pete now spends much of his spare time in PC VR and dabbling in game development. He also has a strong interest in film, photography and music.

Among other endeavours, he previously worked in a Maplin store, so it was a no-brainer when the opportunity arose to work on the modern incarnation of Maplin online. Besides writing for the blog, Pete works alongside the Maplin team to help keep the online store running smoothly.