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The Traitorous Eight and the Battle of Germanium Valley

How California’s ban on non-competes saved the tech industry from eugenics.

A circuit board with the silhouette of a hooded Klansman, his robes covered in circuit traces.
Image; Adam Jones, Ph.D./CC BY-SA (modified)

In 1956, the Nobel prize in physics went to William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain for their work on silicon transistors. Shockley, a Bell Labs alum, had already gone to work commercializing this invention, moving from New Jersey to…




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Cory Doctorow

Cory Doctorow

Writer, blogger, activist. Blog:; Mailing list:; Twitter:

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