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20 SMT007 MAGAZINE I JUNE 2020 and some of them are changing right now: medical electronics, onshoring, consumer goods and shortages, remote meetings, medi- cal testing, homeschooling, new product intro- duction, disinfectants, online universities, streaming, strong broadband, remote voting and campaigning, take-out services, e-tailing, remote religious services, car buying, remote routine medical care, elderly care, municipal services, car registrations, and more and more areas where we are already changing what we used to call standard operating procedures. The thing to do is to look at everything that is changing and find a better way to not only change them but change them in a way that will be even better than the way we used to do—which, ironically, until now, we thought was the best way. These times are not for the faint of heart, those who hate change, or for those who would rather fight than switch. No, these are times when innovation will rule, and great innova- tors will thrive. If you are a creative person, this is your time. If you are one of those peo- ple who looks at things the way they could be and says, "Why not?" this is your time. The old way of doing things is the most powerful enemy of your culture. Our job as innovators, team leaders, and company leaders is to study what is currently going on in the world today and do some- thing about it. Capitalize on what we are seeing during our own darkest hour and find ways to improve our lives not only temporar- ily today but for the future as well. In fact, our job right now is to study the needs of today and match them with the solutions of tomor- row; by doing exactly that, we may even come up with our own version of a "change the world" product. As I review the list of things that are chang- ing right before our eyes, I am tempted to look at one thing that is obvious as well as pertinent to our space of interconnect products, and that is NPI. There has never been a better exam- ple of a time when we all needed very rapid NPIs than right now. Just as the pandemic is fast-moving, so is the need for fast-moving NPIs in terms of medical electronics. Compa- nies are frantically working on ways to pro- duce better, cheaper, and more-effective venti- lators, medical device disinfectant ovens, and testing devices. I recently came across some amazing new products that were not even a twinkle in an inventor's eye a few months ago. Check out these five inventions: 1. A germ-killing face mask: This mask is made out of material that allows it not only to protect from germs but to kill them on contact. 2. A 3D, custom-made face mask: This type of mask is formed perfectly to the wearer's face so that it is comfortable but also snug-fitting (they should make this one out of that germ-killing material, don't you think?). 3. An autonomous sterilization robot: You've seen robotic vacuum cleaners and lawnmowers. This is the same principle except it's smaller and cleans and disin- fects as it goes around your surfaces. 4. A solar protective bubble: This looks like a large, clear umbrella completely covering the top half of the person using it. 5. A two-person ventilator: These machines can support more than one person at a time. Here's the good news for our industry. Who is going to design and build these devices? We are—those of us in the electronics PCB and PCBA areas are the ones who have to support these new products. Are you pre - pared? Can you build products from sche- matic to reality in a matter of days? Here's a These times are not for the faint of heart, those who hate change, or those who would rather fight than switch.

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