Saturday, 26 November 2011

Modern Icon

It seems to me if you want to illustrate some technology story on television, then you present a tracking shot along the surface of a computer board with some voice over introducing the subject. The viewer gets to see a parade of complicated chip like things with silver legs and some other technical looking items in the background. Everyone is impressed.

The problem with designing electronics is these modern icons fall down immediately. They are showing you some ancient printed circuit board they found lying around. It's very rare I see some pcb on TV that presents brand new technology, because the world of electronics moves on so quickly.

What about this then eh? This is one of my own designs...

Shiny, technical and impressive? 

No, I don't think so. This is a design from ten years ago and as such it is hopelessly out of date. Show this to any design engineer and they would be overcome with indifference. The chips are too big, the tracks are too big and those via holes are definitely too big. Where's the dense packaging you see inside any mobile phone?

So let's have some sympathy for the frantic world of this old electronics designer where Everything you know is Wrong...*

*Speaking of which, watch this excellent Youtube thing :-)

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