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Emerging techniques for integrating optoelectronic (OE) devices, analog interface circuitry, RF circuitry, and digital logic into ultra-mixed signal systems offers approaches toward and demonstrations of integrated optical interconnections in electrical microsystems. As rising data rates dictate the use of optical interconnections and interfaces at increasingly smaller distances, optical interconnections stand at a threshold of opportunity for pervasive implementation if cost-effective integration process technology and performance can be implemented. Heterogeneous integration is one approach toward the integration of compound semiconductor OE devices, Si CMOS circuits, and organic materials. Heterogeneous integration approaches, which utilize dissimilar materials which can be independently grown and optimized, and are subsequently bonded together into an integrated system, are particularly attractive methods for creating high-performance microsystems. This paper describes a variety of optical interconnections integrated into microsystems using thin film heterogeneous integration. Thin film heterogeneous integration is attractive from the standpoint that the topography of the integrated microsystem can remain flat to within a few microns, substrates which are often optically absorbing are removed, both sides of the thin film devices can be processed (e.g., contacted, optically coated), and three-dimensionally stacked structures can be implemented. Demonstrations of interconnections using thin film heterogeneous integration technology include an integrated InGaAs/Si CMOS receiver circuit operating at 1 Gbps, an InGaAs thin film photodetector bonded onto a foundry Si CMOS microprocessor to demonstrate a single chip optically interconnected microprocessor, smart pixel emitter and detector arrays using resonant cavity enhanced P-i-N photodetectors bonded on top of per-pixel current controlled oscillators and resonant cavity enhanced light emitting diodes integrated onto digital to analog converter gray-scale per-pixel driver circuitry, and photodetectors embedded in waveguides on electrical interconnection substrates to demonstrate chip-to-chip embedded waveguide interconnections.