Category Archives: Laying It Out

Off-grid thoughts from a burned-out designer turned editor.

Optimal at Optimum

As corporate models go, Optimum Design Associates isn’t unique. Several firms have launched as design shops only to add EMS capability as they matured. But one thing ODA does that I really like is provide a much greater level of detail about … Continue reading

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VTP: Very Tiny Parts

A while back, I wrote about a new ARM Cortex M0+ chip from Freescale. It’s not the first M0+, but I do believe that it’s the smallest. I’ve been checking stock off and on and finally found the smallest package … Continue reading

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The HP Split

Those wondering how the HP split might shake out should read this piece in Bloomberg today. In summary, HP’s PC group just lost some of its pricing advantage, as the servers and other business-oriented gear are going with the new Hewlett-Packard Enterprise company. HP … Continue reading

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Cost Reduction in Design — More Advice

If you’re looking for the absolute, cheapest possible assembly service, you’ll need to look outside of North America. If you really need a decent price with good quality and good service, you can keep your gaze West of the Atlantic … Continue reading

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The End of the Viasystems Era

At long last, the hunter became the hunted. TTM Technologies today announced its pending acquisition of Viasystems. The deal, expected to close in early 2015, will vault TTM to second place among the world’s largest PCB fabricators. No matter how … Continue reading

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Wave of Innovation

Old friend Jeff Miller (some readers may remember him from his ACT and Wise days) took this photo of a 3D printed car this week while at IMTS in Chicago. Meanwhile, while at PCB West earlier this week, we saw the … Continue reading

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Why Soldering’s Loss was Design’s Gain

Catching up on your summer reading? Consider Dickie: Memoirs of a Mad Scientist, by Richard Nedbal. Though not seen around the industry much anymore, Rich, many longtime readers will recall, revolutionized CAD and CAM software as founder of P-CAD, which … Continue reading

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Does Rising Nationalism Pose Threat to Electronics Supply Chain?

The amount of geopolitical discord around the world at present is stunning: Thailand, Vietnam, Korea and other major electronics manufacturing hubs are seeing a rise in nationalism and severe internal tension over how to address foreign pressure. Thailand in May endured … Continue reading

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Jerry Shore, RIP

I didn’t know Jerry Shore, except by name, so I can’t really comment directly on his passing this week at the age of 88. But he was a significant force in the printed circuit industry for decades, founding Park Electrochemical … Continue reading

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A ‘Worthington’ Idea

EMS firm Worthington Assembly last week announced a deal to market its EMS services via CircuitHub. WAI is a small EMS company located in Western Massachusetts. Like many in the sub-$20 million space, WAI’s owners double as its salesmen, and … Continue reading

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