Ernest Simo, astronaut and cosmonaut at the famous National Aeronautics and Space Administration-NASA- is presently in Cameroon. This son of the country is the subject of numerous stories which frequently mention that he is the inventor of the SIM card, inserted in our telephones.
Sceptics have been quick to raise debates in forums. And rightly so. Because, the recognised inventor is Roland Moreno (1945-2012), a French inventor of Egyptian origin. He patented the SIM card in 1974 to protect it from hungry telecommunications industrialists. And in that year, Ernest Simo was 21 years old! One can also understand that some make the link between Simo and the term SIM which, actually stands for Subscriber Identity Module.
And during interviews that he grants, Ernest Simo never claimed he invented the SIM card. However, he underlines often modestly that he contributed to the work establishing this chip which generated the bank card, Visa card and other microprocessors that the world knows today.
Ernest Simo is a graduate in electrical engineering and obtained a doctorate in Electrical Engineering at the University of Birmingham, in the United States. In fact, the SIM card has several unofficial fathers. Some mention the Germans Dethloff and Helmut Gröttrup. For others, it is a Japanese. In the end, history retained Moreno.
Monique Ngo Mayag