The wonderfully visceral thing about web publishing is that you can track what people are reading and when they get into it. Unlike a print article whose popularity may be unseen and unknown (unless somebody drops me a note), your reactions to a web article are immediately visible to me. A popular article on the Planet Analog website will feel like it's generated a beehive of activity, with dozens of worker bees buzzing in-and-out each minute.
The articles published here—"Top Clicks 2004"—have garnered that sort of attention on the web. They reflect the full gamut of analog engineering concerns, from system-level timing (Agere System's contribution), to op amp package layout (Analog Devices'), to logic level translation (Texas Instruments' piece), to the projected market for power management ICs. While none of these articles have been previously published in print, their popularity is testament to the utility of tutorial material for the analog engineering audience—and, in the case of iSuppli's projections, genuine curiosity about the analog IC market.
Look for Planet Analog to expand its influence in the coming year (along with sister sites devoted to automotive system design, power management, and consumer video electronics). In 2005, we'll highlight techniques for driving flat panel displays, serial data buses, the analog aspects of wireless design, meter reading and precision signal conditioning, consumer audio amplifiers, and more on portable power management. In December, we'll once again celebrate those web-only articles which attracted a following among Planet Analog's audience.
Stephan Ohr, Editor and Site Manager
Here's the links to your favorites:
--Improved packaging and layout minimizes op amp distortion--
When using operational amplifiers, optimizing the
layout to achieve the lowest large-signal distortion
appears to be an abstract problem. A part might provide
distortion as low as "100 dB when evaluated on a board
provided by the manufacturer, but might get 10 dB worse
when it is plugged into the user's system. An ADI
engineer shows how they've solved that problem.
--Power Trip: Rising equipment sales, tighter requirements drive the power-management semiconductor market--
The market for power-management semiconductors is
peaking in 2004, as strong demand for electronic
equipment drives up sales this year and paves the way
for continued, although slower, growth in 2005, iSuppli
Corp. predicts. In one of several articles initially
solicited for an EE Times magazine supplement, a market
watcher offers insights into the markets for power
--Timing Synchronization speeds network access--
As the essential foundation of all multiplexing,
switching and transmission equipment, system timing's
importance has been growing as the demands and variety
of communications services increase. An Agere Systems
engineer offers insights into the timing issues which
effects communications between chips, boards and server
--Secrets of level-translation revealed--
Supply voltages continue to migrate to lower nodes to
support today's low power, high performance
applications. While some devices are capable of running
at lower supply nodes, others might not have this
capability. To have switching compatibility between
these devices, the output of each driver must be
compliant with the input of the receiver that it is
driving. A Texas Instruments' engineer describes the
some of the level translation schemes to interface
these devices with one another, and the merits and
demerits of each scheme.