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PCBD-Nov2015

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32 The PCB Design Magazine • November 2015 ing or managing CAD data. Engineers are often duplicating the same CAD file created by a col- league in a nearby cubicle or office, so there is a lot of wasted effort. With SnapEDA, engineers simply search for the part they're looking for, and select their de- sign tool to start the download so it saves con- siderable time. A core metric we track is the hours we save engineers each week, a function of downloads and pin count, which has grown over 6x in the past six months. Shaughnessy: that's impressive. What are the biggest challenges you face in meeting customers' data needs? Baker: The big gest challenge is incorporating the wide variety of standards and preferences engineers have when it comes to CAD files. A CAD file that is high quality for one engi- neer could be poor quality for another engi- neer who follows another set of standards. So making sure that we provide this transparency into the standards a file follows is what we're focused on. Furthermore, engineers have their own personal preferences, or need to follow com- pany or application-specific standards. Mak- ing the CAD files more customizable is where we're focused next. Shaughnessy: how has data management changed over the years? Baker: Because of the ubiquity of the Internet and web-based APIs, solving data challenges is becoming much more accessible. For example, electronic component data—such as pricing, availability, datasheets, and specs—is now read- ily accessible thanks to companies like Octopart (recently acquired by Altium). We use this data at SnapEDA to let engineers know whether a product is available in the marketplace before they download the CAD files. Shaughnessy: What sort of opportunities do you see for snapedA in the future? Baker: We're on the cusp of a major revolution in the electronics industry that will see the pro- liferation of connected devices into every aspect of our lives. Today, the average household owns approximately 10 connected devices. But by 2020, it has been projected that the same house- hold will have over 50 connected devices. Over the next five years, we'll watch as companies launch a "smart" version of nearly every object, from watches to scales, with PCBs being the con- nective tissue that make these devices a reality. At the same time, the electronics industry is becoming more diverse as electronic design becomes more accessible. So there's a growing long tail of smaller companies designing new products. In the past, semiconductor companies could employ an application engineer specifically focused on providing design support to large accounts. But increasingly, innovation is com- ing from everywhere and it's becoming impor- tant to figure out how to provide resources at scale to support the increasingly diverse group of companies designing electronics. SnapEDA is aiming to be the platform that bridges the gap between semiconductor companies and de- sign engineers, helping semiconductor compa- nies increase their design wins by getting their product incorporated into these diverse new products. We're also planning to launch more pre- mium services for teams, such as improved workflows and collaboration as subscription offerings that will make design data manage- ment more accessible to companies creating electronics. SNAPEDA: THE FEMALE-OWNED STARTuP REvOLuTIONIzING CAD DATA intern Adolfo Farias, Natasha Baker, and intern Marcio Moura. feature interview

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