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


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Well, it’s the last Friday in November. On any normal year in the U.S., this would be “Black Friday” because, for many retailers, the kickoff to the holiday season’s shopping spree is the source for most of the operating income for the year. While it remains to be seen how exactly how much traditional in-store and online retailing will rake in, with the varied pandemic lockdowns, it’s clear that readers wanted to get the latest electronics industry sales numbers! So, we’ve included the PCB and semiconductor sales and bookings report here.

In addition, I-Connect007 columnists captured reader attention this last week. We bring you three columns exhibiting excellent information and great writing as well.

Be safe as you close out November and enter into the last month of 2020. There are even more changes over the horizon for us in 2021, though many of them look to be leading us out of our current (temporary?) situation.

North American PCB Industry Sales Up 3 Percent in October
November 23, 2020

I can’t improve on the comments from Shawn DuBravac himself: “The current environment is starting to look increasingly like a normal recession and less like the initial shock. While PCB shipments were generally in line with expectations, bookings continue to fall below average.” But the future may have better news. 

North American Semiconductor Equipment Industry Posts October 2020 Billings
November 20, 2020 

Meanwhile, the semiconductor industry sees growth. “The semiconductor industry remains resilient despite challenges posed by the pandemic and geopolitical tensions,” said Ajit Manocha, SEMI president and CEO. The uptick in semiconductors is often a leading indicator for an increase in PCB bookings as well. 

Design Circuit: Failures of Imagination—A Column of Caution
November 20, 2020 

In his column, originally published in the November 2020 issue of Design007 Magazine, IPC’s Patrick Crawford explores the root cause of failures: failures of nerve and failures of imagination. Crawford draws upon history and the work of author Arthur C. Clarke in his essay, which is neither a failure of nerve nor of imagination. This is an excellent four-minute, thought-resetting read. 

Standard of Excellence: Bringing Your Salespeople Together
November 23, 2020 

Anaya Vardya and the team at American Standard Circuits turn their partner philosophy to sales departments. It’s all too easy to think of sales folks as competitors—even between two companies collaborating with each other. Anaya Vardya makes the case that the sales teams (perhaps especially) should partner, too. 

Trouble in Your Tank: A Process Engineer’s Guide to Final Etching, Part 1
November 20, 2020 

Mike Carano’s column is a rock-solid, steady presence here at I-Connect007, and is always full of technical detail, chemistry, and deep knowledge. Carano’s audience reflects the high value given to the applicability of his column. This particular column, however, drew significantly more readership than normal, and when you read it yourself, you’ll see why. When a masterful columnist like Carano pens a diamond amongst gems, it’s worth showcasing.

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

05/13/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
The big news in the industry this week was the new bill introduced to the U.S. Congress in support of the PCB manufacturing industry. The Supporting American Printed Circuit Boards Act of 2022, which was introduced by Reps. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) and Blake Moore (R-UT), incentivizes “purchases of domestically produced PCBs as well as industry investments in factories, equipment, workforce training, and research and development.” The bill is a PCB-oriented complement to the semiconductor-oriented CHIPS Act of 2021.

A Game Plan for Upskilling Your Fab Workforce

05/10/2022 | I-Connect007 Editorial Team
There’s been a lot of talk among PCB manufacturers about the need to upskill their workforce. But where do you start—do you set up your own program or send staff to third-party training centers? We asked David Hernandez, IPC vice president of education, to weigh in on this topic, and the criteria that goes into creating IPC training programs. In addition to upskilling strategies, David also delves into the need for our industry to develop a labor pipeline, as well as the challenges we face in hiring, training, and retaining employees in this industry during a tight labor market.

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

04/29/2022 | Nolan Johnson, I-Connect007
It certainly seems that our times continue to be interesting, don’t they? Just how many different flavors of supply chain disruption can we come up with? Investment on the supply side needs to increase, but the size of the labor force needs to increase even more, if we want to accomplish the task of the buildout itself, let alone running the facilities properly.



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