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32 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I NOVEMBER 2022 What exactly is digital automation? I see it as the simplification of manual tasks that have been optimized in the digital world to the point where they require the least amount of effort to successfully do what they are required to do in the real world. We adopt digital technolo- gies everywhere else in our lives, so it should be a natural progression to do so more fully in PCB design. A good example of digital automation that comes to mind is something as simple as using an app on your cellphone to scan in a business card for collecting contact data information, and then collating this data digitally and pro- viding a usable output. Another prosaic exam- ple is using a GPS to provide directions inter- actively to efficiently get you from point A to point B in the least amount of time. When you go to a restaurant and use your phone to place your order to quickly get a hot meal served to your table, most of this process flowed through the digital world. ink about all the items and processes that can now be tracked and opti- mized, and how these captured metrics can be used to increase efficiency and lower cost. Now, we all know PCB design is not quite that simple, but the concept of digital automation is basically the same. So, how do we leverage digital automation? When it comes to leveraging digital automa- tion in PCB design in today's industry, design- ing faster, better, and cheaper are critical imperatives in the face of several factors that challenge most engineering teams—ranging from addressing the law of physics in today's complex designs, the reduction of project bud- Leveraging Digital Automation to Accelerate PCB Design Digital Transformation by Stephen V. Chavez, SIEMENS EDA

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