For most of electronics, 2011 came in like a lion and is going out like a lamb. Carryover from a strong bounce back year in 2010 set markets booming in the early part of the year, but dragging effects—chiefly macroeconomic concerns—have slowed business considerably as the year draws to a close.
But 2011 will be remembered for a number of things apart from the second half slowdown. Natural disasters, including the devastating March 11 earthquake and tsunami off the coast of Japan and the monsoon flooding in Thailand beginning over the summer, wreaked havoc on the electronics supply chain. Mobile products, including media tablets and smartphones, continued their ascent to the top of the consumer electronics heap.
But like any year, 2011 will also be remembered for its share of missteps in the electronics world. EE Times has compiled a list of 10 blunders from 2011 that we believe will be remembered for years to come. We proudly present them in the following pages:
I am surprized that people see threat on the simplest of technological improvements. There are larger REAL concerns on the GPS built in smart phones, than the data gathered by when people do their laundary or play with their thermostat (the real bulk of energy use).
I read all ten and wondered out loud: How much money, talent, market share, and energy were wasted by these few blunders? I can say that it was encouraging (in a weird way) to see the extent of the blunders and the companies involved. While I am not a CEO/CFO/C'anything I can't help but wonder if I or anyone else could have done a better job. If only I had the chance (both to do the job AND get the pay)! Happy New Year!
right on, y_sasaki! Smart grid is not a blunder, per se, conceptually. My reservation is in labeling the grid 'smart' simply because newer technology like digital is being applied. I think it is an end goal, but the process to get there will take many years.
I also disagree to call rocket failure a blunder. In rocket science such blunders are part of the game. In a developing country like India,since govt launched Space program there have been many such failures but a steady effort and learning from the mistakes has resulted in India becoming one of the successful nations to have developed long range missile launchers.
Not only are smart meters a threat to what little personal privacy we have left, they are the software equivalent of the neutron bomb. Being able the turn everything off remotely without damaging anything? What an idea..
Well it surely depends on what you're trying to achieve.
If the goal is to make a system that is vastly better than what came before and will help reduce power peaks and consumption then smart metering is probably a failure.
If instead, the goal was to create some sort of buzz to profit from the green craze, then smart metering was possibly a huge success.
My strong believe is that Solar will provide eventually profit to the right solution providers. Shame that there was no long term vision to continue research and optimization of USA domestic mfg.
I agree that CISCO's miss-steps, are among the top blunders.
However disagree that the rocket should be considered a failure. Prototype testing offers great insight of what is possible and wake-up calls of what is not. Largest blunder is to yield to stage fright and do nothing.
I totally agree with the #1 winner. HP spent 2011 on an around the clock blunderfest. Buying Palm in the the first place was of coarse the catastrophic business decision that led to the disaster. A $1.2B debacle is pretty bad, but imagine the "near miss" when Microsoft was within a whisker of paying $44B for Yahoo! Ironically, Jerry Yang may have saved Microsoft.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.