The Intel 4004 chip was a single item that changed everything – smaller than a fingernail but with the computing power of a machine that used to fill a room, it sparked the computer age. Or as the Wall St Journal put it more poetically, the 4004 “was a computer carved onto silicon, an element as plentiful on earth as sand on a beach…”
Fortunately for us, it’s easy to draw up an astrology chart for this iconic object; it was launched on November 15, a day that officially counts as it’s birthday. With no particular time specified, I’ve gone with Sunrise and made the location Santa Clara, where Intel was based.
I find if fascinating that, unless we count the hypothetical Midheaven in Virgo, the 4004 has no Earth in it’s chart. Even if the Ascendant or Midheaven is Earth, that’s still a miniscule amount. It’s birth-moment fits the arrival of a new style of economy – wealth that wasn’t mined, inherited or traded but generated.
The Sun was in Scorpio, there was a stellium in Saggo – Jupiter, Neptune, Mercury, Venus, Fortuna plus the Galactic Center and Lilith conjunct Uranus. This chart image doesn’t emphasize it but note that asteroid Prometheus squares the Lilith-Uranus conjunction – this chip became far more than what was intended. The calculator company it was created for pulled out of the deal so the company was forced to put it on the general market to try and claw their investment money back – voila personal computers.
The Intel 4004 has Saturn in Gemini trine Pluto in Libra – both points will be massively activated by Pluto in Aquarius with Uranus in Gemini in 2025. What would an ingenious expansion of this technology look like?
Interestingly, Federico Faggin – the Sagittarius who invented the 4004 chip – does not seem to be a fan of quantum computer possibilities. Born, like his creation, with Lilith conjunct Uranus, he is big on human consciousness: “In my opinion, conscious computers won’t be possible. The computer is simply a manipulator of symbols, although at first I thought the computer could be aware, this was in ‘86/’87.
I also thought that the complexity of the brain could be expressed through consciousness, then thinking about it, trying to understand and create a computer that could be aware, I realized that this was impossible because there is no physical law that allows you to transform electrical signals – those of a computer or the biochemical signals of the brain – into consciousness, sensations or feelings. We perceive the world through sensations and feelings.”
Faggins also created the technology behind touchscreens, signed each of his original chips with his initials – F.F. – has an epic (very Sagg) consciousness & philosophy rave on his site here and at age 82, is a few years away from his Uranus Return in Taurus!
I haven’t seen it yet but a documentary- The Four Lives Of Federico Faggin – based on his autobiography was released last year. Given that he essentially invented modernity, I’m keen to learn more about his consciousness theory.
Image: Thomas Nguyen