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Content posted in May 2011
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Land of the Rising Silence
5/31/2011   38 comments
The Japanese are great at achieving goals like that 15-percent cut of electricity use this summer. In contrast, they tend not to discuss, or make plans, or even face up to issues — like the nuclear mess in Fukushima.
Max meets Mini-Max (Sculpteo 3D models and printing)
5/28/2011   12 comments
There’s a really cool website from whence you can order a miniature replica of yourself. This is obviously very handy to keep around in case you forget what you look like…
Is a media tablet a PC, or not?
Semi Conscious  
5/27/2011   30 comments
For the purpose of tracking PC sales from quarter to quarter and year to year, should media tablets be included or kept as a separate category?
Space exploration is a marathon, not a sprint
5/27/2011   9 comments
There is understandable anxiety about the future of U.S. manned space exploration, but we must consider the long view in order to explore the stars.
Zombie tales for people with brains
5/26/2011   7 comments
When I come to think about it, I’ve actually been seeing quite a lot of these little rascals recently, starting with The Walking Dead television series followed by all sorts of books…
Engineers as tinkerers
Engineering Pop Culture!  
5/26/2011   9 comments
If you work on mind-boggling complex problems all day long and then go home and tinker some more, you're an engineer.
The Drive for Innovation
Social Mania  
5/25/2011   19 comments
What would possess someone to drive across the country for a year, in a Chevy Volt? A lust for your stories and the open road.
"I'd like to have an (engineering) argument, please."
Engineering Pop Culture!  
5/25/2011   21 comments
We can argue about small topics, but it's the big ones that really keep our creative thinking sharp
JEDEC mobile memory standard unfolds
5/25/2011   1 comment
If you have a vested interest in the next JEDEC memory standard, consider attending one of its Mobile Memory Forum events in June
Audio subjectivist vs. objectivist debate
Audio DesignLine Blog  
5/25/2011   4 comments
The audio subjectivist vs. objectivist debate has flared up once again, this time triggered by a critical hardcore engineering-based review of a popular DIY audiophile headhone amp.
Got Discworld?
5/25/2011   24 comments
I am a HUGE fan of the author Terry Pratchett in general and of his Discworld books in particular. If you've not been exposed to these little rascals you are missing a real treat...
IMEC and the ARM connection
5/25/2011   6 comments
European research institute IMEC is holding its annual technology forum. It has one of those slides with more than a hundred partner logos and ARM's was nowhere to be seen. So what was ARM CEO Warren East doing at the event?
Widespread transition to services vexing electronics and high-tech firms
5/25/2011   1 comment
The rate of change in the electronics industry is bordering on frenetic. The industry is entering a juncture where transformational changes are needed. It will determine which ones succeed or fall out of the race.
DESIGN TIP: The Tortoise and the Hare
Test & Measurement Designline Blogs  
5/25/2011   2 comments
Your primo product has a problem—a bad problem. You know you have an all-hands-on-deck situation, but how do you reach a solution as quickly as possible?
Who needs a hybrid?
Engineering Pop Culture!  
5/24/2011   81 comments
The gas-powered Chevy Cruze gets hybrid-like mileage at a much lower price.
My Geiger counter now counts (hurray)!
5/24/2011   12 comments
My Geiger counter is on its way back to me. Quite apart from anything else, I can’t wait to test the little rascal out with my two radioactive marbles…
Panel prescribes Rx for Toyota
5/24/2011   1 comment
More local management responsibility urged, along with listening to "external" safety and quality experts.
How technology is spurring faster product development in cleantech
5/24/2011   Post a comment
In this viewpoint, Eric Marks, analyst at PricewaterhouseCoopers, focuses on smart technology initiatives and explains how manufacturers are taking advantage of technology to develop smarter products at a record pace.
National Instruments goes shopping
5/23/2011   2 comments
While there seems to be an abundance of great companies in this market, there are a few that stand out because they have been fortunate enough to gather some extremely gifted talent.
Microchip’s 32-bit Arduino clones are mega-cool
5/23/2011   15 comments
The whole Arduino concept has attracted a large following, but existing Arduino boards are based on relatively low performance 8-bit microprocessors, until now…
Living with the Volt
5/23/2011   32 comments
For the last 2 weeks what may arguably be the most significant car in the history of the U.S. auto history since the Model T has been sitting (and charging) in my garage.
Intel's embedded chief has big expectations
Semi Conscious  
5/23/2011   28 comments
Six months into his tenure as general manager of Intel's Embedded and Communications Group, Ton Steenman says Intel will continue to grow its footprint in the embedded market.
Book Review: Idea Man by Paul Allen
Engineer’s Bookshelf  
5/22/2011   2 comments
Idea Man is billed as “A Memoir by the Cofounder of Microsoft” – and this is actually a really good way of presenting a book that’s sort-of, but not quite, an autobiography.
Future of mobile 3-D is a two-way street
5/21/2011   3 comments
Audiences have been able to consume media in 3-D, with the aid of glasses and parallax filters, but they have not been able to communicate back with their devices in the third dimension.
The top 10 reasons to debug hardware using your OS and application software
5/20/2011   1 comment
Despite opinions to the contrary, it is clear that the best tool to debug new hardware is the Operating System and Application Code which will run on it.
Cool Beans! Does this mean I’m (almost) famous?
5/20/2011   11 comments
I just performed a search for *Cool Beans* in Google Images – you can only imagine my surprise to see my Cool Beans logo thingy prominently displayed…
Help for unemployed engineers
Engineering Pop Culture!  
5/20/2011   60 comments
Sixty to 80 percent of jobless engineers are older than 50. That's not a statistic. That's a crisis.
Age survey results: Life's good if you're employed
Engineering Pop Culture!  
5/19/2011   37 comments
Age doesn't appear to be a negative influencer in the electronics industry, unless you're looking for a job. And then, the numbers don't lie.
Wearable rugged computers for dismounted soldiers
5/19/2011   2 comments
I just heard about a new commercial-off-the-shelf wearable rugged computer that set my mind buzzing with science fiction tales concerning wearable computers and body armor…
Intel: Under the smoke and mirrors
5/18/2011   23 comments
The contrast between what Intel was saying and doing at its annual analyst meeting was pretty revealing.
There's still a place for elegant, creative circuit design
5/18/2011   17 comments
ICs do a lot, but circuit design is still a needed art
Nominations open for the 2011 EDA Industry’s Phil Kaufman Award
5/18/2011   Post a comment
So who are you going to nominate for their services to EDA? Who? Me? No, you really shouldn’t… but who am I to deny you if you insist (said Max, humbly :-)
It always worked before, so you broke it
Engineering Investigations  
5/18/2011   29 comments
When a new model malfunctions right before ship, why is the software guy always blamed?
End of an era – Last mechanical typewriters are sold
5/17/2011   6 comments
This is a little sad in a nostalgic sort of way… not that any of us would ever again want to use a mechanical typewriter, of course, but still…
Prisons and cell phones
5/17/2011   7 comments
If you are following the issue of sniffing out mobile phones in prison, you might be interested in some news out of Berkeley Varitronics Systems.
Continuing its acquisition spree, Xilinx buys Sarance Technologies
5/17/2011   1 comment
The acquisition of this leading silicon IP provider bolsters Xilinx's capabilities for providing 40G, 100G, 150G and beyond Interlaken, Ethernet, and high-bandwidth bridges…
Brazil’s growing global profile - and the electronics opportunity
5/17/2011   9 comments
Brazil is no ordinary BRIC country but there are opportunities there, argues Nitin Dahad recently back from Sao Paulo.
Springsoft's Certitude checks the checker for RTL designs
IC Design Corner  
5/16/2011   1 comment
Springsoft has announced enhancements to their Certitude functional qualification system.
The DAC theme for 2011 will be…
5/16/2011   6 comments
For this year, one area that is definitely going to be a theme is FPGA-based prototyping. This is heating up into a must have tool in everyone’s arsenal…
Three screens, keyboards, and mice – but one small fly in the soup
5/16/2011   16 comments
I’ve long referred to my office as “the pleasure dome” in jest – but recent developments really have made it a pleasure to go to work...
Embedded Systems Conference wrapup
IC Design Corner  
5/16/2011   Post a comment
Mike Demler's summary of EDA and IP vendor announcements at the Silicon Valley Embedded Systems Conference.
Embedded security, telehealth, ESC top picks & Chrome OS anyone?
5/16/2011   Post a comment
Several recent interesting and relevant blog/community posts here and elsewhere are of note this week.
The changing face of power density
5/16/2011   Post a comment
Here's a view on how power-supply density has increased and how this has affected size and thermal support
SanDisk to swallow Pliant
5/16/2011   4 comments
Today, SanDisk announced its plans to acquire Pliant Technology, known for its enterprise SSDs.
Hear the silent members of our ecosystem
5/16/2011   12 comments
A documentary and other reports are helping bring to light the unglamorous struggles of workers who make the gadgets we love.
Icera exit is good news for startups
5/16/2011   10 comments
Overall Icera's sale to Nvidia is good news for semiconductor startups, particularly in the U.K., argues Rick Clucas.
Timing constraints can be more than a headache
Semi Conscious  
5/16/2011   1 comment
Trouble with timing constraints is an annoyance that plagues many a design engineer, but the results of a recent survey suggest that the issue can cause more than a few headaches and some lost hours of sleep.
Is there a standard formal verification language?
5/13/2011   1 comment
If you are a formal verification hero, then the plethora of languages and other “stuff” will not be confusing at all, but for the rest of us…
Age discrimination survey in the engineering workplace
Engineering Pop Culture!  
5/12/2011   40 comments
Age discrimination in engineering is anecdotal; this survey tries to quantify it
DESIGN TIP: The glass should be not quite full
Test & Measurement Designline Blogs  
5/12/2011   Post a comment
Let’s say you’re developing a new product and getting it to market quickly is your highest priority. What’s the best approach to help your team reach its product introduction goal as fast as possible?
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