I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week


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It’s been a busy week in this industry, and we have news and articles from the PCB design, fabrication, and assembly communities. The roller coaster ride continues, with whiplash-inducing news from IPC about March North American shipment—they’re up from February but down from the same period a year ago.

We also have articles that cover everything from upskilling your labor force to using big data to help bring manufacturing back to North America. We have a review of one of our latest books, Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to… Stackups: The Design within the Design, and a great column by Anaya Vardya about the need for American manufacturers to stop viewing one another as adversaries and start working together. We’re down to 200 domestic fabricators; cooperation may be the only answer.

As Ben Franklin said, We must, indeed, all hang together or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately.”

IPC Releases PCB Industry Results for March 2022
Published April 22

Good news, bad news: According to IPC, March North American PCB shipments rose 5.6% over the previous month but fell 11.7% YOY. As Shawn DuBravac says, supply chain issues are improving just as orders are dropping in various markets. Never a dull moment in this industry.

Training the Future Manufacturing Labor Force
Published April 19

There’s been a lot of talk about the need to “upskill” the PCB manufacturing labor force, but what does that entail, exactly? In this interview, Michael Connella, Matt Stevenson, and Debra Coburn discuss Sunstone Circuits’ plans to keep their staff trained on the latest in fabrication technology and processes.

Big Data Can Bring Your Business Back
Published April 20

It’s all about data. In this industry, you either manage your data or you get left behind. But big data may provide the advantage that North America needs to regain some of the work lost to overseas companies. In this article, Siemens’ Zac Elliott explains how big data just might be the differentiator that American companies have been waiting for.

The Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to… Stackups: The Design within the Design
Published April 18

The I-Connect007 book Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to… Stackups: The Design within the Design has been flying off our virtual newsstand. No wonder: The stackup may be the most important part of your PCB design. One of our readers, signal integrity engineer Skyler Sopp, has written a review of this timely tome. Check it out.

Standard of Excellence: From Adversaries to Collaborators—Let’s Do This Together
Published April 20

Columnist Anaya Vardya makes a great point here: Our domestic PCB industry could have stood stronger and been much more vibrant today if we had stood together, shoulder to shoulder as one united industry. But alas, we did not, and today this what we have: fewer than 200 companies striving to stay alive with our wagons still moving in a straight and vulnerable line instead of coming together in a circle of strength.” Don’t miss this column.

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I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

12/02/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
Normally, the holiday season is a slow(ish) news time, but this year just feels different. My opinion is that the technology industry banked up a whole bunch of innovations and new products during the pandemic disruptions, which are coming to market as quickly as possible. The November/December news is full of technology discussion, as my selections this week clearly demonstrate.

Electronica 2022: Happy to Be Back in Munich

11/21/2022 | Pete Starkey, I-Connect007
As we stepped out of the hotel into the drizzling rain, we were relieved that it wasn’t snow. Looking down the escalator into the U2 platform in Munich’s Hauptbahnhof central station early on the morning of Tuesday, Nov. 15 and observing the mass of humanity pushing and shoving to cram into trains to the exhibition centre, it appeared that a significant proportion of the international electronics industry had gathered to attend electronica 2022, co-located with SEMICON Europa and recognised as the world’s leading trade fair and conference for electronics.

I-Connect007 Editor’s Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

11/11/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
The industry news cycle seems to be picking up speed lately. Of course, 30 days into the quarter is about when public companies announce their results, and in the midst of this worldwide financial situation, we’ve got all eyes on anything coming out from our counterparts in the industry. I’ve noticed that global corporate results (Nan Ya PCB and TTM, in particular) do seem to be on everyone’s radar. In addition to financial news, trade shows are popping back up around the world—Europe, India, and a special report from editor Andy Shaughnessy, who took his own road trip to Raleigh, reporting on PCB Carolina, which had its own heyday this year.



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