Archive for November, 2008

See you at ICCAD

Monday, November 10th, 2008

This is a quick note to let you know that I will be attending (and very briefly speaking at) the EDA Bloggers BOF at ICCAD this Wednesday (Nov. 12, 2008) at the Doubletree Hotel in San Jose. The meeting will take place in the Fir Ballroom from 4-6pm.

For more information check the SKMurphy site.

Hope to see you there.

A Picture is Prettier than a Thousand Words

Sunday, November 9th, 2008

Today I catapulted the Free Model Foundry website into the twentieth century by adding its first graphic.  Yeah, it has sported company logos since its beginning but this is an actual picture.

Place graphics on websites has been the norm for a long time now.  However, as an older engineer, my orientation has always been about usable content over eye candy and entertainment.  The FMF website was started in 1995 when those of us with 14.4K dial-ups were the lucky ones.  The website was intentionally spartan to spare those users in Indonesia and Turkey painful page load times.  Since then, the website has undergone two major makeovers but it has remained text based.  Engineers come for models – we try to provide them without a lot of song and dance.  That has always seemed to me like the best way to do it.

But, it has been pointed out on more than one occasion that I am not completely normal or representative of society at large.  Most people are more visually oriented than I am – even engineers.  So, I asked a friend, Donald W. Larson (, to create an image for me that conveyed the concept that a single component does not work in isolation.  Every “system on a chip” goes into a larger system.  This is the image Don created for me and has given permission for FMF to use:

You chip does not work in a vacuum

You chip does not work in a vacuum

I don’t know if I can say it is worth a thousand words but, it is prettier than a thousand words.  Is it a welcome addition to an otherwise drab website?  You tell me.