Stanley Mazor: Co-inventor of the early microprocessor

Stanley Mazor is a retired Silicon Valley computer designer and technology icon. He is one of the co-inventors of the world's first microprocessor, which is now found in automobiles, medical devices and, of course, computers.

For his work refining the computer-on-a-chip Intel 4004, he was inducted as a Fellow of the Computer History Museum and awarded the National Medal of Technology by President Barack Obama in 2010.

Mazor will speak today, Jan. 30, about how computer chips are designed and made at a free lecture offered by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.

He has lived in Ashland on and off since 1996. He is most famous here for designing and building the 16th-century neoclassic, French-inspired chateau on 25 acres, which is visible from Interstate 5.

He wrote a book, "Design an Expandable House: For Present Needs and Future Dreams," on being an amateur architect after he designed the three-story chateau using Styrofoam blocks, solar electric and other green materials.

Mazor graduated from California's Oakland High School and San Francisco State University, where he majored in math in the early 1960s.

It was an era in which few knew that an inexpensive, scientific IBM 1620 computer would help revolutionize the world. He taught himself computer architecture by reading technical manuals and passed the information on to other students.

He was a programmer and computer designer with Fairchild Semiconductor, where he created a high-level language computer. He then joined Intel Corp. when it was just a year old and the rest is chip history.

He worked for Intel in Brussels, and taught in South Africa, Stockholm, Nanjing and in the Silicon Valley at Stanford University and the University of Santa Clara.

Including Intel, he participated in five high-tech startups.

What facts about your subject gets your audience's attention? I offer some personal stories and lots of photos.

What is your favorite aspects about Ashland? Theater and community spirit.

What do you like to do in Ashland during your time off? I am in a playwriting group and I am also a reader for the Ashland New Plays Festival.

What do you still have on your to-do list? Lots more travel, more writing.

How can we learn more about you? Google "Stanley Mazor."

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