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About WDC

The Western Design Center, Inc. (WDC) Founded in 1978 by William D. Mensch, Jr., WDC has licensed its 65xx brand microprocessor Intellectual Property (IP/Cores) to the electronics industry since 1981. WDC is considered a pioneer in the design and licensing of microprocessor technology Intellectual Property (IP) cores and inspired Acorn engineers to create the wildly popular ARMxx series of microprocessors. GTE, Rockwell, MOS Technology, Synertek, and NCR were some of WDC’s first licensees. In addition, WDC began selling 65xx brand microprocessor chips to Apple Computer in 1984 making it the first supplier of microprocessors as a fabless semiconductor company.

Diversity is a crucial aspect of our mission as it brings together individuals with unique perspectives, experiences, and backgrounds to create innovative solutions and drive progress forward.

Embracing diversity in these fields of inquiry fosters an inclusive culture where everyone’s contributions are valued and respected, and promotes equal opportunities for individuals regardless of their race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or socio-economic status. By prioritizing diversity, we can ensure that the scientific and technological advancements of the future are representative of and accessible to all members of our society.

Bill Mensch Bio

Legendary Microprocessor Technology

COMDEX 96 honored the 6502 as the first of only seven microprocessors having the most impact on the Information Technology industry over the previous 25 years. Mr. Mensch, WDC’s Founder, was a recipient of this prestigious award on behalf of the 6502.
The following is a list of some of the pioneering products that the 65xx technology is remembered for:

Personal Computers

MOS Technology: KIM–1 Personal Single Board Computer

Apple – Apple II, Apple IIc, Apple IIe, and Apple IIgs

Atari: 65XE, 130XE, 400, 800 

BBC/Acorn – System 1, Atom, BBC Micro – Note the efforts and evolution of the BBC

Commodore PET, VIC20, 64, etc. commodore computers

Video Games 

Atari: 2600, 5200, 7800, Lynx, XEGS 

Nintendo: Famicom, NES, SNES

Hand-Held Electronic Publishing

Franklin’s Digital Book System


Rockwell modems

General Instrument analog set-top boxes

Micronas closed caption digital TV chipsets


Micronas dashboard controllers


Embedded Microprocessor Defibrillators

Billions and Billions sold

Through the last 40+ years as one of the most popular microprocessor architectures of all time. WDC and its licensees have shipped over eight billion CMOS processors; more than 1 per person on planet earth! This number is growing by hundreds of millions of units each year.

The following is a partial list of high-volume applications that have been successful in using 6502 microprocessor technology:

· Personal computers

· Video game systems

· Modems

· Floppy disk drives

· Set-top cable boxes

· Telephones

· Fax machines

· Pagers

· Digital television chipsets

· Copiers

· Scanners

· Wireless cameras

· Security Systems

· Telecom Devices

· Electronic Books

· Personal Digital Assistants

· Toys

· Automobile dashboard

· Appliance controllers

· Industrial controllers

· Embedded heart defibrillators

· Pacemakers

· Point of Sale Terminals