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DECEMBER 2018 I DESIGN007 MAGAZINE 69 commit to good schematic practices win the long game. Commit to Process We are all thinking about making great final products. Designers want to make great boards. Engineers want to make great schematics. We also need to think about making the work of the next person easier to ensure that they do not make avoidable errors. Everyone—from management to manufacturing—suffers from go-it-alone engineering and benefits from clean schematics. In Figure 1, the schematic on the right looks neater, but you can easily trace the intercon- nects in the one on the left. Which would you rather try to follow? DESIGN007 Bob Tise and Dave Baker are engineers at Sunstone Circuits. To read past columns or contact Tise and Baker, click here. Bob Tise Dave Baker 2. Design the schematic in the design program, or at the very least, label all connects with comprehensible net names and avoid using autogenerated names 3. Lay out the schematic in a manner that clarifies locations; particularly in complicated designs, it keeps the designer confident and quick 4. Leave a legacy by labeling the schematic so that the next person can understand it 5. Pride cannot get in the way of good work; designers should be comfortable asking for clarification if they are uncertain of how to proceed 6. Use the DRC and do not allow any design with schematic errors or warnings to be built Winning the Long Game Well-designed schematics pay off not just for the current project but also into the future. If your schematic is clear and nice to look at, you and other engineers can utilize blocks for other similar projects. Teams that Figure 1: Schematic examples.

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