I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week


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After a crazy year like this, we shouldn’t be surprised that this trade show season is unlike any other. Here’s one of the many “silver linings” of 2020: We actually dodged a bullet earlier this year when COVID-19 hit after most of our industry’s big events had taken place.

Now, it’s October. The first completely virtual show season is underway, and everyone involved in show management is getting on-the-job training. And overall, despite a few glitches here and there, these events have been about as good as a virtual show can be. We can’t be together in person, but we can watch classes online and chat with other attendees.

If you’re one of these unsung heroes who have helped make a virtual show a reality, hats off to you. Putting a virtual show together—one that can be viewed on every possible OS and device around the globe—is a monumental task. But our industry is nothing if not creative.

In this week’s top five, we have an assortment of trade show and conference news items, plus a few examples of technological trends and innovation. Next week, Nolan Johnson will bring you his top five picks.

EIPC Technical Snapshot: Automotive Technology
Published October 19

Pete Starkey has been covering EIPC events in person for years, but this year, he has quickly morphed into our most prolific virtual event journalist. He recently reviewed an EIPC webinar that focused on automotive technology, with sessions by Lenora Clark of ESI Automotive and EIPC President Alun Morgan, covering everything from HDI design tips to the latest in thermal management.

Koh Young Joins IPC-DPMX Consortium to Further Enable Smart Factory Automation
Published October 21

There has been a lot of activity in the standards arena lately. IPC combined the IPC-DPMX design data transfer standard with its Connected Factory Exchange (CFX) manufacturing standard, which is designed to offer data exchange from design through assembly. Koh Young joined the IPC-DPMX Consortium, and the company plans to continue implementing Industry 4.0 processes.

Sign up for Mentor’s North American User2User Event November 10
Published October 22

User groups must go on. And Mentor, a Siemens Business, is holding its annual User2User conference in North America on November 10 and in Europe on December 1. For their virtual U2U events, Mentor has developed quite an agenda, with eight tracks for each show. If this proves to be a solid format, I imagine that some of these user group meetings may continue on as virtual events after 2020.

Insulectro Opens Shop With All-New Printed Electronics E-Commerce Site
Published October 20

Printed electronics has been the “next big thing” for years, but it has been slow in gaining ground. Well, the times are a-changing. Insulectro launched an e-commerce site dedicated solely to printed electronics. Customers can order conductive inks and pastes, as well as advanced substrates and films. Is 2021 the year for printed electronics?

Real Time with… AltiumLive 2020: Early Communication Key to Success of OSV Project
Published October 21

In this video interview, I spoke with Rob Cooke, director of engineering at Calumet Electronics, about his panel at AltiumLive that focused on the Open Source Ventilator (OSV) Project. He described how he worked with Dugan Karnazes of Velocity Research and Chris Denney of Worthington Assembly to field ventilator PCBs in a matter of weeks. He also explained how other engineers could achieve similar results with time-sensitive projects in the future.

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Suggested Items

Why We Simulate

04/29/2021 | Bill Hargin, Z-zero
When Bill Hargin was cutting his teeth in high-speed PCB design some 25 years ago, speeds were slow, layer counts were low, dielectric constants and loss tangents were high, design margins were wide, copper roughness didn’t matter, and glass-weave styles didn’t matter. Dielectrics were called “FR-4” and their properties didn’t matter much. A fast PCI bus operated at just 66 MHz. Times have certainly changed.

Bridging the Simulation Tool Divide

04/12/2021 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
Todd Westerhoff of Siemens EDA recently spoke with the I-Connect007 Editorial Team about the divide between users of high-powered enterprise simulation tools and those who need a more practical tool for everyday use, and how Siemens is working to bridge the gap. Todd also shared his views on why so many engineers do not use simulation, as well as advice for engineers just getting started with simulation tools.

Barry Olney’s High-Speed Simulation Primer

04/09/2021 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
The I-Connect007 editorial team recently spoke with Barry Olney of iCD about simulation. Barry, a columnist for Design007 Magazine, explains why simulation tools can have such a steep learning curve, and why many design engineers are still not using simulation on complex high-speed designs.



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