New Blog Link

To the right on this page is a list of links to other blogs related to printed circuit board design, fabrication, assembly and supply-chain management.

Among the recently added is a link to Tektronix’s new Bandwidth Banter blog. Bandwidth Banter is a useful and lively mix of test tips, perspectives and musings directly from the Tektronix engineering community and create a new channel for conversation and feedback. Discussions will explore how test and measurement technologies can be applied to tackle difficult debug challenges or delve into best-practices for cross-domain triggering to isolate design flaws, for instance. At the same time, readers can expect to find practical tips and hands-on guidance about using test instruments more effectively as well as more light-hearted takes on the state of the industry.

The downside: to comment, you have to register using Tektronix’s site, not a third-party site like Disqus. So in short, Tektronix gets your name and contact info.

The Media (Us) Gets Social

Besides this blog, we at CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY are active in a number of other social media related forums.

You can follow Editor-in-Chief Mike Buetow’s steady stream of late-breaking news on Twitter (@mikebuetow).

Or join our LinkedIn groups: CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY, SMT Processing, PCB Test and Inspection, PCB Cleaning, and EMS — Electronics Manufacturing Services.

Finally, you could friend us on Facebook: search CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY.

Each vehicle is different, and each offers access to a somewhat different audience. Twitter tends to be a one-way, or two-way at most, type of communication. We use it more to relay important breaking stories, both reported by us and others. The LinkedIn groups, most of which are new, are more expansive, and intended to drive in-depth technical and market-related conversations. Facebook is less formal, in my opinion, than LinkedIn. The discussions there tend to be simpler in nature.

They all have their place, however, and we’d love to see you engaged in any one of them.




Virtual Show, Real Value

We are eagerly looking forward to next week’s Virtual PCB trade show. It’s the fourth year we’ve produced the Web-based event, and we’ve learned a few things along the way.

1. Although the attendees are online, they usually act as if they are in the flesh. There’s plenty of the “how are you doing,” “great to see you,” and gentle ribbing that takes place when we run into each other at PCB West, SMTAI, Apex or one of the other “bricks and mortar” shows. It’s social. (Perhaps that’s why they call it “social” media.)
2. People are polite to the point of near invisibility. Just like a physical show, some attendees do lots of talking, while others never utter a peep. That’s OK. Lurk away. Everyone learns in their own way.
3. Speaking of learning, it’s almost impossible to attend Virtual PCB and not take away something. Nearly 3,000 people registered last year! These are your peers across the entire electronics manufacturing spectrum, from design to assembly to test. The same experts you might see at a physical show — folks like signal integrity expert Dr. Eric Bogatin or reliability guru Werner Engelmaier, will be there, holding court and sharing their wisdom. More than that, it’s a chance to meet folks from all over the world. These are potential future colleagues and employers. Insofar as networking is concerned, it’s tough to beat.

We hope you take a moment to register (it’s free!) at and log-on to Virtual PCB, March 8-9. It’s a fresh way to stay up on our industry — without ever leaving your desk.