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Altium conducted its first-ever users conference, AltiumLive 2017: Annual PCB Design Summit, at the Hilton Resort and Spa on beautiful Mission Bay in San Diego. This conference included a lineup of notable speakers, including four keynote speeches over the two-day event.
This conference drew hundreds of PCB designers, many of whom attended breakout sessions designed in accordance with the show’s motto, “Learn – Connect – Get Inspired.” Altium’s goal was to educate users on best practices, inform the community on new Altium products such as Designer 18 and Altium NEXUS, and to inspire excellence by networking and engaging with fellow designers and users alike.
Altium Chief Marketing Officer Ted Pawela kicked off the event by greeting everyone and introducing the activities the next two days, as well as Altium’s soon-to-be-released design tool, Altium Designer 18. Ted introduced the first of four keynotes that would be presented over the course of the next two days.
I was fortunate enough to be invited to give a keynote presentation, focusing on new design features of high-density PCBs. Other keynote speakers included Dan Beeker, principal engineer with NXP Semiconductors; and Max Seeley, senior electrical, PCB, and manufacturing engineer with 3M Corporate R&D.
Over the two-day period, there were Eight Technical Breakout Sessions for attendees to choose from. Session instructors included Tara Dunn of OMNI PCB, Susy Webb of Fairfield Nodal, and EDA software luminary Charles Pfeil of Altium.
On the first day, after the evening dinner, Altium had a special treat for everyone. The attendees were broken up into eight-person teams for a competition to build robots and then battle with the other teams’ robots. These robots were disassembled afterwards and donated to Fab Lab San Diego. These labs are production workshops and small-scale innovation hubs equipped with digital fabrication machines and technologies for the production of objects, tools and electronics.
A fun and exciting evening was had by all, including student guests from BadgerLoop of the University of Wisconsin and the UCSD Space Team that displayed their student designed satellite.
At the closing of AltiumLive 2017 drawings were held for special prizes. The next AltiumLive event will take place in Munich, Germany, October 24-25, 2017.
Altium has videos of these presentations and plans to make videos and slides available on its website in the near future.