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  • Chip War

  • The Fight for the World's Most Critical Technology
  • By: Chris Miller
  • Narrated by: Stephen Graybill
  • Length: 12 hrs and 38 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (108 ratings)

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Chip War cover art

Chip War

By: Chris Miller
Narrated by: Stephen Graybill
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Publisher's Summary

***Winner of the 2022 Financial Times Business Book of the Year Award***
***Selected as one of Barack Obama's Favourite Books of 2023***

An epic account of the decades-long battle to control the world's most critical resource—microchip technology

Power in the modern world - military, economic, geopolitical - is built on a foundation of computer chips. America has maintained its lead as a superpower because it has dominated advances in computer chips and all the technology that chips have enabled. (Virtually everything runs on chips: cars, phones, the stock market, even the electric grid.) Now that edge is in danger of slipping, undermined by the naïve assumption that globalising the chip industry and letting players in Taiwan, Korea and Europe take over manufacturing serves America's interests. Currently, as Chip War reveals, China, which spends more on chips than any other product, is pouring billions into a chip-building Manhattan Project to catch up to the US. 

In Chip War economic historian Chris Miller recounts the fascinating sequence of events that led to the United States perfecting chip design, and how faster chips helped defeat the Soviet Union (by rendering the Russians’ arsenal of precision-guided weapons obsolete). The battle to control this industry will shape our future. China spends more money importing chips than buying oil, and they are China's greatest external vulnerability as they are fundamentally reliant on foreign chips. But with 37 per cent of the global supply of chips being made in Taiwan, within easy range of Chinese missiles, the West's fear is that a solution may be close at hand. 

©2022 Christopher Miller. All rights reserved. (P)2022 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Critic Reviews

"An indispensable book'" (Niall Ferguson)

"Pulse quickening. A nonfiction thriller - equal parts The China Syndrome and Mission Impossible." (New York Times)

"Fascinating… A historian by training, Miller walks the reader through decades of semiconductor history – a subject that comes to life thanks to [his] use of colorful anecdotes." (Forbes)

What listeners say about Chip War

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Excellent explanation of a largely unknown story

Detailed but understandable technical discussion. Chip war is a must read for anyone interested in computers or geopolitics.

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Informative, well-researched, timely

This book gave me a really easy-to-listen history of chips, and helps to explain how they became one of the most critical components of most products that we use.

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Fascinating

Clear and informative. Provides the history which is important context before bringing it to present day implications

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Excellent

very well explained. comprehensive history technology explained for the lay person and the geopolitical implications clearly argued. A compelling story and thesis. excellent.

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Magnificent

Delving into one of the most complicated industries with ease and relative simplicity. Didn't find difficulty following through the details whether they be technical, business oriented, political or historical.

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Great Book

If you are a fan of tech and enjoy learning about the history of how we got to where we are, then this is a must listen. I loved learning about the inventiveness and ingenuity of the people who pioneered the development of semi conductors and how they have played such a crucial role in modern politics and foreign affairs. Great job Chris

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Interesting history for us fans of technology

Detailed history detailing the background and development of technology, culminating in Nvidia chips and such. Coming from such a background (as a layman, not formally educated or a coder) I enjoyed following the progress of chips development. The names we know all are in there (Noyce, Jobs, Gates et al - there by the dozen). I enjoyed listening to this and if you're interested in the development of the computer world (which touches all of us), then there's much here to enjoy.

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Fascinating

Just fascinating. Who can believe how complex this world is and yet how simply reliant we are on a small few.

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Very interesting and timely book

Definitely would recommend to anyone interested in technology trends, cybersecurity and how these aspects of modern life intersect with geopolitics in such a profound way. Learnt a lot from the book - very worthy use of my time.

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characters and co's along the history of semis

interesting story telling of the people who invented the semiconductor industry. the next chapter will be just as intersting.

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