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- Chris is currently in Florida, a somewhat crazy state. Don’t believe him? Check out this “gameshow” called “Fake or Florida”:
- Dave is busy testing the boards from his Kickstarter. He still has more than 1500 for the assembly house to test!
- This is also why Dave has been developing a precision current source.
- People have asked why he isn’t using a flying probe machine? The overhead is too high for low number of pass/fail tests.
- Dave likes controlling a lot of aspects of the operation, including shipping, because he is able to optimize.
- Chris decided to optimize for time by offloading the shipping of PCBs for Contextual Electronics.
- Do you panelize boards? Here is another great resource about how and why to do it.
- Can anyone compete if they’re not using some component of “Free” these days?
- Touchstone Semiconductor seems to be shut down; Silicon Laboratories bought their IP for $1.5 million.
- They’re not alone, Radio Shack is closing up 1,100 stores as they figure out their business model is crap.
- Dave saw the same thing happen when Dick Smith sold to Woolworth’s.
- Analog Devices also decided to close up a tiny bit of their shop; they will no longer offer an ADI branded version of MultiSim (the simulator from National Instruments). Dave points out there may be SPICE based tools in the future.
- Many vendors buy their tools from third parties; LT Spice was formerly switcherCAD. We’ll have Mike Engelhardt on the show in April!
- TI (formerly National Semi) WebBench adds schematic modification and simulation. This might finally make the tool useable!
- Another entrant into the fray (and one that has yet to prove its usefulness) is Schematics.com
- One thing that WILL be working is former guest Adam Wolf taking on the nightly builds of KiCad for OSX!
- Chris spills his idea that someone should start a Red Hat for KiCad; basically a company dedicated to serving corporate customers with supported open source tools. Then feed the enhancements back to the community like Red Hat does with CentOS.
- Dave wants to call it “Tinfoil Hat” or alternately “Copperclad Hat”.
- Cereamic capacitors can fail…and 80% of the time it’s from the mechanical assembly of the boards they’re on.
- This can cause capacitors to “sing”. Dave used to do this purposefully when building ceramic hydrophone elements.
- Speakers can be microphones and microphones can be speakers. Chris enjoyed Innovation Hub talking about how the Beatles did this for
- Ceramics aren’t always the answer! Sometimes you need a minimum esr for switching regulators.
- Sometimes other capacitive elements can be sensitive. Former guest of the show Mike Harrison (Mike’s Electric Stuff) showed how PIC microcontrollers are pressure sensitive!
- There are now 50 Billion ARM devices in the world! Dave doesn’t think that is susprising, but Chris does giving that it’s mostly recent growth (since the iPhone) that things really exploded.
Thanks to Scott Kellum for the Florida picture
Peter M says
Nah, KiCad support company should be called PCB Hat.
Quick trademark infringing logo
Where is the volume control for the audio player?
ARM hasn’t been in everything all the time. MIPS and other architectures were quite popular.
The One True Stickman says
I don’t know, I think the name for your Hat-modeled KiCAD should just be CopperC(L)AD. I was thinking lower case L but that doesn’t read so well in a not-stylized form.
And I can’t believe you guys passed up the opportunity for the “break your ARMS” pun at the end… I’m disappointed! You came so close!
Chris mentioned there might only be “tenths” of a cent profit in microcontrollers. I imagine it might be a little better than that. This page gives an average selling price of around $0.80 currently, so you must getting at 5 or 10 cents profit on that. http://www.icinsights.com/news/bulletins/MCU-Market-On-Migration-Path-To-32bit-And-ARMbased-Devices/