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74 The PCB Design Magazine • June 2016 by Barry Matties In this interview, Interconnect Design So- lutions' Mike Brown and I took a few minutes during the recent Geek-A-Palooza event to dis- cuss the importance of material selection and designing for profitability, how automation af- fects the design process, and the future of the design community. Barry Matties: Mike, tell me a little bit about IDS and what you do. Mike Brown: We provide PCB layout and me- chanical engineering services as an extension for OEMs as well as bareboard fabricators and assemblers that need design support. Basically, we're in the trenches working with the electri- cal engineers to help realize our product and bring it to market. Matties: Are you doing actual design for custom- ers or are you just assisting and educating? Brown: We're actually doing design at the rigid board level, the flex-rigid, and flex board level as well as mechanical engineering and enclo- sure design. We're helping engineers realize their project from concept through reality. Matties: So you start from the beginning? Brown: We start from the beginning with a functional spec. We're sitting there basically looking at a block diagram sometimes. Matties: It's a collaborative effort? Brown: Yes, it is very collaborative. Matties: Isn't that the best way to go, really? Brown: It is. You have to be engaged in the be- ginning in order to be successful in the end. Matties: And yet many engineers don't take this track; what's the downside of that? The Importance of DESIGN FOR PROFIT (DFP) ARTICLE

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