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8 The PCB Design Magazine • March 2016 It's almost time to head back to Las Vegas for IPC APEX EXPO, along with my favorite event, the Design Forum. I'm glad to be heading back to the land of Lost Wages, and in a new venue, the Las Vegas Convention Center. The last time I attended a trade show in the convention cen- ter was in the summer of 2001 for the Design Automation Conference. DAC was held in June that year; who had that bright idea? I guess the surface of the sun was booked! That year, I perfected the art of "shade darting," running from one bit of shade to the next. It was 108° the entire week of DAC 2001, and it was so hot that the cab drivers almost turned on their air conditioning. Let's hear some applause for IPC not holding APEX in Vegas during the summer months. So we're back in Vegas again. But I've heard grumbling from people in the electronics indus- try who are worried that attendance is going to drop off this year. You've heard the traditional arguments for holding APEX in San Diego vs. Las Vegas: There are hundreds of circuit board companies and defense contractors in and around San Diego, the weather is perfect, and your manager is more likely to sign off on a vis- it to San Diego than Vegas. IPC knows this, of course, and I understand that they'll be holding APEX in San Diego in 2017 and for several years after that. You can't please everyone. The I-Connect007 team will get to Vegas over the weekend and start planning our wall- to-wall coverage. I get started early in the week with my coverage of the Design Forum on Mon- day, March 14. Anne Marie Mulvihill and her accomplices at IPC have set up a solid design program. The subtitle of Dale Parker's keynote speech offers a hint of what you can expect: "Brother, Can You Par-a-Digm?" Parker is the eCAD tools and support manager for Google/ Alphabet, and he'll be discussing "Paradigm Shifts Required to Accomplish Next-Generation Technical Innovation." Next, Gary Carter of Fujitsu, Humair Man- davia of Zuken, and Hemant Shah and Ed Acheson of Cadence Design Systems will pres- ent "Seamless Data Transmission from Design through Assembly: Briefing from the IPC-2581 Consortium." Speaking of which, if any of you are using IPC-2581 on a regular basis, I'd like to hear about your experience. Have you ever designed a PCB using this neutral data transfer standard? Then, Karen McConnell of Northrop Grum- man, Dock Brown of DfR Solutions, and Dale Lee of Plexus will discuss "Developing a DFX Program for Your Organization: DRC in a Lay- out Tool vs. DFX Rules When Checking a Board." That sounds like a great session; Karen is a hoot, as well as a great instructor. Cherie by Andy Shaughnessy i-connect007 Back to Vegas the shaughnessy report 8 The PCB Design Magazine • March 2016

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