The Digital Layout: Interaction—The Cure for Industry Contraction

Introduction
In this month’s column, I share reports from our PCEA leadership on a flurry of activity over the past month. Next, I highlight some inspiring words that Chairman Steph Chavez recently delivered to our executive staff. Then, I wrap it up with a list of events for 2021 and 2022. 

PCEA Updates

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It seemed that the electronics trade show industry had been shrinking over the past year only to swell with a sudden, extreme realization that some venues were opening and the dormant plans for last year are now in the latent stage of metamorphosis and coming back to life. August provided a positive swell of relief in the form of a significant trade show called DesignCon, August 16-18, at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. PCEA was happy to participate by setting up our first trade show booth ever. PCEA executive staff gives a special nod to Eriko Yamato, our PCEA events coordinator, on design, coordination and delivery of our booth, as well as some very special T-shirts to hand out during the show. 

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Michael Creeden, PCEA vice chair and treasurer/coordinator of our PCEA sponsors, manned the booth throughout the show with some help from PCEA media coordinator Tara Dunn. Mike reports that while the show numbers were slightly down, he enjoyed the spirit of a “family reunion” and quite a few were interested in hearing about the value of becoming associated with the PCEA.

Message from the Chairman
As I was closing out my weekly “post-a-notes” of action items, Inoticed that many of them are regarding PCEA. One common theme that puts a huge smile on my face is the fact that PCEA is truly active and alive within the industry.

Here are just a few highlights:

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  1. PCEA had its first major physical presence (booth) at an industry conference at DesignCon 2021.
  2. PCEA Ohio had its initial kickoff meeting to jump start this new chapter.
  3. An industry veteran has contacted me acknowledging his willingness to initiate a new PCEA chapter in Texas.
  4. Our education committee is set to publicly release an official process for publishing industry technical content on our website.

And now, I am looking forward to our next major event. My focus is a PCEA booth and presence at PCB West 2021. It will be the first face-to-face event I will have attended since this pandemic hit the public. I can’t wait for that integration with friends and fellow industry colleagues at this event.

As I reviewed the list of PCB West 2021 presenters, I noticed several of them are PCEA members. I love this fact. Let us look forward to and continue to show a strong support for our fellow PCEA members, as well as our support the PCEA presence within the industry and at our next major event.

Best Regards,

Stephen V. Chavez MIT, CPCD, CID+,

Chairman

Next Month
As Steph mentions, our PCEA educational committee has been hard at work crafting policies for publishing educational materials on the PCEA website and making them available to our members. Tomas Chester, our new head of the education committee, tells me that the committee will continue to review educational article submissions and even web links to outside existing resources. He hopes they will serve as an educational resource to the PCB engineering community. With some of the best minds in PCB engineering education on our PCEA educational committee, I look forward to hearing more from Tomas and reporting on what they come up with.

Upcoming Events
Here is our list of upcoming events. Hope to see you at any or all of these.

PCB West 2021
October 5–8, 2021
Santa Clara, California

SMTA International 2021
November 1–4, 2021
Minneapolis, Minnesota

productronica
November 16–19, 2021
Munich, Germany

PCB Carolina
November 10, 2021
Raleigh, North Carolina

AltiumLive 2022
January 26–28, 2022
San Diego, California

IPC APEX EXPO 2022
January 22–27, 2022
San Diego, California

PCB East 2022
April 11–13, 2022
Marlborough, Massachusetts

Spread the word. If you have a significant electronics industry event that you would like to announce, please send me the details at kelly.dack.pcea@gmail.com, and we will consider adding it to the list.

Refer to our column and pce-a.org for upcoming industry events. If you have not yet joined the PCEA collective, please visit our website and find out how to become a PCEA member.

Conclusion
We’ve all been waiting for our industry to cease contraction and expand back to a form so robust that it will enable the flow of information and ideas again. How great it was to experience this through our PCEA representation at DesignCon last month. Now is the time to tap in to the PCEA for what is coming your way in the future. As Steph indicates, this organization is committed to participation in the trade show industry and to reach out with educational support to its membership. Who knows what great educational, presentational, and organizational endeavors will grow from the PCEA by placing a simple blue trade-show booth on a show floor? I am excited to hear about any potentially historic and monumental leadership opportunities which may come about in the trade show industry as the PCEA sets up its next event right around the corner. Could we be looking forward to any big announcements? Yes, please.

See you next month or sooner.

This column originally appeared in the September 2021 issue of Design007 Magazine.

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2021

The Digital Layout: Interaction—The Cure for Industry Contraction

10-04-2021

In this month’s column, I share reports from our PCEA leadership on a flurry of activity over the past month. Next, I highlight some inspiring words which our Chairman Steph Chavez recently delivered to our executive staff. Again, I am happy to provide our readers with a list of events which are coming up in 2021 and 2022.

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The Digital Layout: Educational Accolades for Our Chapter Liaison

09-02-2021

In this month’s column, I will give kudos to our PCEA Chapter Liaison who has been capturing the efforts of the PCEA to educate our members and our industry as a whole and then pass the mic to our PCEA Chairman, Steph Chavez to provide some thoughts on the matter.

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The Digital Layout: Say What You Do—Do What You Say

07-28-2021

In this month’s column, Kelly Dack provides answers to some common questions about joining an electronics industry organization. PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez conveys his excitement and anticipation of events to come and how the PCEA will be involved.

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The Digital Layout: PCB Engineering on the Move

06-15-2021

In this month’s column, Kelly Dack examines the PCB engineering job outlook and evaluate the career moves we are making, while PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez lists some important attributes in our personal development that will keep our edges sharp.

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The Digital Layout: Test for Design—How Do You Measure Up?

05-25-2021

In this month’s column, Kelly Dack conveys the value of honing a skill set and the importance of being able to measure that skill set. Next, I hand it off to our PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez, who offers a positive outlook on PCEA activities over the summer months. Again, I am happy to provide our readers with a growing list of events which are coming up in 2021.

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The Digital Layout: Back to Back Chapter Meetings and More

04-15-2021

In this month’s column, Kelly Dack extends an overview of two recent PCEA chapter meetings and gives a nod to two very interesting presenters, and PCEA Chairman Stephen Chavez relates a recent, personal career “crossroads” experience.

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The Digital Layout: Messages from the Chairmen

03-24-2021

In this month’s column, Kelly Dack interviews the chairman and chairman emeritus for the PCEA, who provide their shared viewpoints on the importance of organizing.

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The Digital Layout: Footprints—Small Steps with a Giant Impact

02-11-2021

Kelly Dack celebrates the importance of the humble PCB component footprint, and PCEA Chairman Stephen Chazev provides some inspiring words as we tread into the new year.

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The Digital Layout: Now, Where Were We?

01-13-2021

In this month’s column, Kely Dack shares a few terms I’ve been contemplating lately, and which I have been trying to put in context regarding the role of the PCEA within the electronics industry. Then, PCEA Chairman Stephen Chavez to inspire us for a fresh start in the new year. Finally, he provides us with a list of events which are coming up.

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2020

The Digital Layout: PCEA 2020—Small Rearview Mirror, Big Windshield

12-10-2020

In this month’s forward-driving column, Kelly Dack glances back at PCEA’s year in “rearview," and PCEA Chairman Stephen Chavez focuses on what lies ahead. Dack also points out some interesting events for you to consider attending.

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The Digital Layout: PCEA and Industry Leaders Who Happen to Be Women

11-20-2020

In this month’s column, Kelly Dack introduces a few of our inspiring PCEA leaders who happen to be women and teases some upcoming coverage we’ll be doing on one of the PCEA’s educational networking events. PCEA Chairman Stephen Chavez also offers his take on the importance of diversity in a collective organization.

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The Digital Layout: Local Chapters—You Can Distance This Body But Not These Senses

10-23-2020

Kelly Dack shares a few thoughts on the formation of PCEA chapters as far as where they’re at and where they need to go, and PCEA Chairman Stephen Chavez offers some encouraging words for these extended times of COVID-19.

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The Digital Layout: Education Unlocks the Golden Door to Freedom

10-09-2020

Kelly Dack speaks with the PCEA Educational Committee regarding the team’s take on the PCEA’s role in education. What do they have in store? PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez also weighs in on the strength of our education committee and why it is crucial to the PCEA’s mission.

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The Digital Layout: It’s Official—1,000+ PCEA Members Worldwide

08-27-2020

Kelly Dack reviews the virtual PCEA grand opening, which took place on July 14, 2020 and featured guest presenter and PCEA educational committee member Rick Hartley. He also checks in with the PCEA education committee, and PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez also shares his satisfaction with the PCEA's recent open house.

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The Digital Layout: The PCEA’s Grand Opening

07-15-2020

Kelly Dack interviews Rick Hartley about the presentation he has prepared for the PCEA’s grand opening on July 14, and PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez shares a timely message on how our time working from home is a serious matter, and how letting our guard down could be a mistake.

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The Digital Layout: An Expectation of Collaboration

06-15-2020

Kelly Dack shares updates on the PCEA website and reports on some inspiring communication on collaboration taking place between the PCEA and a well-known industry organization. Kelly also includes a "Message From the Chairman," Steph Chavez, as well as professional development opportunities and events.

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The Digital Layout: Life During COVID-19 ‘Wartime’

05-15-2020

This month, Kelly Dack shares updates on the progress the PCEA staff is making toward establishing a web presence and reports on what the PCEA is preparing in support of the PCB engineering community. Though PCEA chapter activities, as well as professional development and event opportunities, have been limited because of restrictions due to COVID-19, PCEA Chairman Steph Chavez also offers his perspective on the challenges of staying connected without using traditional means.

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The Digital Layout: Onward!

04-30-2020

In Kelly Dack's debut as the new author of this column, he provides updates on the direction and leadership of the PCEA and upcoming professional development and event opportunities, and Stephen Chavez shares his first "message from the chairman." In addition, Bob McCreight, president of the Silicon Valley Chapter, discusses their most recent “lunch and learn” event held in February.

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The Digital Layout: The Foundation of the PCEA Is Being Laid

03-17-2020

Stephen Chavez highlights the Orange County Chapter’s recent meeting and their transition from IPC to PCEA affiliation, recent PCEA activities, and the evolution of this column, including introducing Kelly Dack, CID+, PCEA's new communication officer.

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2019

The Digital Layout: Fall 2019 Recap

12-29-2019

As the second half of the year is quickly passing by, the IPC Designers Council has seen lots of continued activities within our industry regarding PCB design. PCB West was held in mid-September in Santa Clara, California, and as usual, the show exceeded expectations. Stephen Chavez provides a brief breakdown of fall activities within local chapters.

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The Digital Layout: Recent IPC DC Chapter Activities

10-23-2019

We’re onto the second half of the year now, and we’ve seen lots of activities within our local Designers Council (DC) Chapters, including a few international chapters as well. Here's a snapshot of what has taken place so far from several of our active chapters.

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The Digital Layout: New and Thriving Chapters in Mexico

08-01-2019

This month’s column highlights the Monterrey Designers Council Chapter located in Monterrey, Mexico. The chapter was established November 23, 2017, which makes it a younger chapter compared to several other global chapters currently in existence today. I also share news about a new chapter forming in Nogales, Mexico.

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The Digital Layout: Spotlight on the Orange County Chapter

06-13-2019

So, what’s so special about the Orange County Chapter? For starters, we’re fortunate that a large number of electronics companies are located in Southern California, so there are many PCB designers in our area who are thirsty for knowledge. We are also lucky to have many local PCB fabrication and assembly companies from which we draw attendees and speakers. All of the major CAE vendors have offices and technical field personnel here and have been very supportive of our chapter in hosting lunches to help us keep our costs down.

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The Digital Layout: San Diego Chapter Updates and More

05-20-2019

This month’s column is packed with recent activities, including a spotlight on the San Diego Chapter and an interview with Luke Hausherr, the new chapter president. You’ll also find an update from the IPC Designers Council Executive Board as collaboration with the new IPC Education Foundation continues to evolve and recommended reading featuring an interview with a young designer.

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The Digital Layout: Greater Phoenix Chapter Revived

03-21-2019

The Greater Phoenix chapter was revived in late 2018 after being largely dormant over the past few years. It has also undergone some leadership changes. As the former president, I have taken on a more active global role at the executive level of the IPC Executive DC Board as the communications officer at large. I will stay on the leadership committee for the Greater Phoenix Chapter as the VP at the request of the newly elected president, Randy Kumagai. Randy and I have already started to brainstorm with ways to kickstart the chapter’s activity in 2019.

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The Digital Layout: Designer Highlights From IPC APEX EXPO 2019

03-15-2019

The IPC Designers Council Executive Board meeting took place on January 29. Executive Board members in attendance included Gary Ferrari, Mike Creeden, Cherie Litson, Kelly Dack, Thomas Romont, and me. We also had Michael Schleicher, a guest representative from Germany, in attendance. Further, Dr. John Mitchell, Dave Hernandez, Colette Buscemi, Teresa Rowe, Aaron Birney, and Charlene Gunter du Plessis represented IPC.

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The Digital Layout: Cascade Designers Council Chapter and 2019 Activities

02-28-2019

Our CID+ class had four people enrolled who came from around the area. All who attended learned about how board materials affected their designs, including EMI, EMC, impedance control, power distribution techniques, board stackups, and placement strategies in more detail than what was in the CID. Further, participants took the exam first thing Friday morning. This allowed us time to attend the Designers Council “lunch-and-learn” meeting, and the Altium user group met afterward in the same location.

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The Digital Layout: Chapter Highlights and Certification Successes

01-24-2019

This month’s column highlights the San Diego chapter, which is also where IPC APEX EXPO 2019 will be held at the end of January. You will also find updates on recent CID and CID+ certification success stories, a recap of the PCB Carolina event from the Research Triangle Park (RTP) North Carolina chapter, and upcoming events, so mark your calendars for next year.

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2018

The Digital Layout: Chapter Roundup and CID+ Certification

12-12-2018

This month’s spotlight is the Silicon Valley Chapter. We held our fall quarterly meeting on October 25, 2018, at none other than Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, California—yes, the site of Super Bowl 50 and the soon-to-be 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship game. This was made possible by our host, Sierra Circuits, and sponsor, Altium. We thank them both graciously. Out of 33 total RSVPs, 24 were able to attend the lunchtime meeting. Fun fact: of the members who RSVPed, six of them were CID certified and 10 were CID+ certified, with Faisal Ahmed being the most recent (hear more from him later).

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The Digital Layout: Designers Council Update and PCB Carolina 2018

10-24-2018

Welcome to the first edition of "The Digital Layout." As a current IPC Designers Council (DC) Executive Board member and a long-time active IPC member, I was nominated to be the chairman of the newly created communications subcommittee. In this role, I will be the main point of contact for global chapter communications and will work with local IPC chapter leaders to publish content in this new column. We want to utilize this column to help spread the IPC DC Executive Board’s goals like a virus.

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