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AUGUST 2021 I PCB007 MAGAZINE 37 Max Clark: ey always were. Joe Clark: Why would they get more complicated? Max Clark: Because you put more on them. Almeida: Yes, but that's always been the case. We've always put more on the PCBs. Nolan Johnson: Now, making sure that your substrate and how it performs is a part of the analysis and the selection process was a point earlier on in this conversation. I think I would put out there that, as an industry, we're at a point in circuit board design where it's time to start using integrated circuit method- ologies that were developed 25 or 30 years ago. Shaughnessy: To wrap up, what do you think designers and fabricators seem to misunder- stand about each other most consistently? ey seem to talk past each other; they can't even agree on a standard set of terms. Joe Clark: Let me start that conversation. Here's what I have learned in my years, and I go back to vertical companies as well. I started my career at GenRAD and we fabricated our own boards, assembled them, and so on. We dumbed ourselves down in the '80s when we outsourced manufacturing. What I find today is that most young engineers have no idea what happens to their designs when they go out for fabrication. ey just know that this green thing comes back. I think that's changing, but the problem is more on the design side than it is on the fabrication and contract manufac- turing side. Oen, those upstream don't know what the best practices are and what the chal- lenges are that people deal with downstream. If they knew, and knew that alternatives exist- ed, they would not just send "unintelligent" Gerbers. I'll stop there. Shaughnessy: When they were captives, de- signers all knew more about manufacturing because it was down the hall. Joe Clark: I think we need to re-learn manufac- turing upstream. at's my umbrella view on the world, and I see that changing. Max Clark: Yes, I think the evolution is starting. It's going to take a while. is industry doesn't move fast, but it is going to get there. Anything we can do to push it along we should do. But I think it's starting. at's my last bit. Joe Clark: One thing I would say here is that in many ways the fabricators are—not to sound a little harsh—their own worst enemy because they just take that data and they fat-finger it and cleanse it and spend a lot more time than they need to manufacture the boards. Max Clark: You're correct. Shaughnessy: is has been really great. Matties: Great conversation. ank you all so much for doing this. Almeida: ank you. It's always a pleasure to speak with you. PCB007 Check out Downstream Technologies' book, The Printed Circuit Designer's Guide to... Documentation.

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