Category Archives: Laying It Out

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

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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Taiwan’s New Gravity

How bad is the labor problem in China? We are aware, of course, of the steady hikes in wages, which have annually risen by at least double-digits for over a decade. But now it’s being reported that Taiwan-based component makers … Continue reading

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Alder’s Quiet Retirement

In the quiet of the post-Christmas vacation break Kent Alder officially retired as CEO of TTM. The news should be bigger than it is. It’s been years since the head of a $1 billion a year US-based PCB manufacturer stepped … Continue reading

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More Fun File Facts: ODB++

In my last post, I wrote about the up and coming IPC-2581 PCB manufacturing file format. While IPC-2581 may be looked at by PCB fabricators and assemblers as a holy grail of sorts, it’s not yet widely adopted by CAD software. But, … Continue reading

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Fun Facts about Manufacturing Files

Circuit boards live and die by their manufacturing files. Without complete and accurate information, the board fab house can’t fab the boards, the assembly house can’t assemble your boards and nobody can buy the parts. Our old standard, the Gerber … Continue reading

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Designer Salary Data, Elaborated

Every year it seems we received a few requests for additional information from our annual Designer Salary Survey. This year was no exception. One request asked, “I would be curious to know the salary ranges for those identified as “PCB … Continue reading

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Do Fakes Count?

The news today regarding the seizure by US Customs of nearly a quarter-million counterfeit electronics devices makes me wonder: Do the various industry market research data include all those faked goods? Consider: Some reports claim as much as $100 billion … Continue reading

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Where’d Design East Go?

As recently as February, United Business Media staff were promoting the then-upcoming Design East trade show. Big changes and improvements were promised, and given last year’s flat turnout and buzz, they would have been a welcome shot in the arm. … Continue reading

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All Quiet on the Wilsonville Front

A timely piece from the hometown paper of Mentor Graphics looks at how Carl Icahn has calmed down now that Mentor’s stock price has doubled since he started accumulating shares of the company a couple years ago. The legendary investor … Continue reading

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Collins Closing

Count me among those sorry to hear the news that Rockwell is closing its printed circuit board fabrication plant. I’ve been through that plant and this is sad to see. I wrote a profile of the plant for PC FAB … Continue reading

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