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TECH 2004
October 2004

    O N E S   T O   W A T C H


In Tech 2003, last year's special issue, we profiled six leaders of Minnesota's tech community.
Not surprisingly, these individuals and their organizations continue to innovate.
Here's a brief overview of their accomplishments since we visited them last.

Daniel Baker, president and CEO, NVE Corp.
With NVE's partners Cypress Semiconductor and Motorola poised to mass-produce propriety versions of its bleeding-edge MRAM (magnetoresistive random access memory), Daniel Baker, 46, has steered the once-obscure military R&D company into an increasingly bright spotlight. Sales for the most recent fiscal year were up 115 percent, profits tripled to $2.11 million and the Eden Prarie firm's stock surged to nearly $70 per share.

MRAM is among the uses for "spintronics," which exploits electron spin rather than electron charge. Thus, MRAM is turbo-charged memory with the permanence of magnetic storage--all on micro-sized circuits. But NVE's work goes beyond patenting MRAM components to other spintronic applications such as "nanocomposite" materials that could permit even faster memory and "biosensor" technologies that could shrink medical laboratories to the size of a chip. And, to facilitate signal transmission, NVE is developing the world's smallest and densest spintronic couplers.

With a future so luminous, Baker is increasingly confident these days. "Our chance to revolutionize the market is a lot less speculative now," he says.

Anne Rawland Gabriel is a Forest Lake-based freelance writer.