Fairchild Semiconductor Pitch

Fairchild Semiconductor is a soundtrack album I wrote for a TV show that does not exist.

Yet.

We do not live in a universe where there’s a lavish TV series about Fairchild Semiconductor. But we should and I want to do my utmost to make that universe this one.

When I first learned the Fairchild story, it was so dramatic, so singular that I had to dive more deeply. Having spent hours researching various magazine articles, journals and physics papers way over my head, I became ever more obsessed by Fairchild. I was fascinated by the company and the long shadow its Fairchildren, like AMD and Intel, cast over our lives today.

I would love my album to inspire a real TV series that explored the personalities and the science of those times. Ideally, it would be a co-production between, say, Netflix and the BBC. There would be a one-hour dramatic show, telling the story and then a follow-up one-hour behind-the-science episode. I want people to know the fascinating history behind the last great industrial revolution, without which today’s inter-connected, interdependent world would be impossible.

There were four transistors on the first ever monolithic IC Fairchild invented in 1960.

There are sixteen thousand million transistors on Apple’s M1 chip in 2022.

I want to hear that story.

RIP David Warner (1941 – 2022)

I don’t know why I’m so upset by this. Obviously, he was a huge, huge actor, his IMDB has got 228 acting credits. I’ve loved so many things that Warner turned up in and made a possible 7/10 a 12/10.

He made everything better. Even if it’s one voice or a passing bit, David Warner made it stick and made you think about it often years after.

He felt like family.

Ms. Marvel And The South Asian Diaspora

I am so happy that young South Asian girls have Ms. Marvel on their tellies, tablets and phones.

I am so happy that young white kids watching Ms. Marvel will see views of Karachi and get an idea of Pakistan beyond the racist tropes peddled by the Western media. Beyond the murder porn of US drone footage.

I cried when Kamala talked to her nani and heard her say this:

Nani says: "My passport is Pakistani, my roots are in India. And in between all of this, there's a border marked with blood and pain. People are claiming their identity based on an idea some old Englishmen had, when fleeing the country."

If you’re Irish, you know what partition means, why it was carried out and the consequences for a once-united country. If you’re South Asian, you carry that same understanding and many, many families will have their partition stories. (I mean, let’s face it, there are very few countries that haven’t been sucked dry by the ravenous British Empire. It’s more common weal than commonwealth, amirite?)

Ms. Marvel is a wonder for the way it handles tone-shifting, moving from real history to Marvel mythology and back again without insulting or cheapening the actual events.

But the bestest thing is that Ms. Marvel is a bright, chirpy kids’ show. It has moments of pure silliness, as it should. It is joyful, it’s not some bleak sermon about South Asian oppression, it’s a celebration of our cultures, home and away. It is soooo rare for us to see South Asian families represented, let alone as the centre of a fantastic superhero origin story. There are plenty of grim stories about South Asians and, yeah, we need justice and we need to hear about injustice but, fuck me, could we be allowed to be HAPPY and DANCE and be YOUNG and STUPID and have churi-enabled magic powers?

I’m so happy that I, a middle-aged Indian immigrant living in Britain, can see this show which makes me cry and laugh in equal measure.

But I really, really wish that me in the ‘70s, a little brown kid growing up in a succession of white towns had been able to see himself on TV, too.

I would have been a lot less lonely.

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Picard And 24th Century Mental Health

It was bizarrely melodramatic *and* old-fashioned. And, obviously, potentially harmful.

Also, like 90% of Picard The Series, it directly contradicts Roddenberry’s template of a future Earth that’s post-illness, post-scarcity, post-money. Like Rafi being poor and being “abandoned”, like *everyone* being an alcoholic or addict of some sort.

No spoilers but where was the help for the person in question? Seems like they would have got better help in today’s 21st century capitalist hellhole than the fully-automated luxury space communism that Roddenberry envisioned.

tl;dr ->

Heartstopper

#Heartstopper is the show I needed when I was a kid. It would have made me feel so much less isolated and weird. I wouldn’t have felt so unloved and unlovable.

Lost tracks at the number of times I’ve cried watching this series. I was like, ‘I’m an old man, I’ll find this cute but it won’t affect me, oh no, not with this tough old hide of mine.’

And then:

Thank fuck it’s there for today’s kids.