Electronic Design

Reader Polls/Flashback

Flashback > 10 Years Ago

MARCH 19, 1992
Wireless networks for data-communications systems continue to establish themselves as alternative solutions to problems posed by hardwired networks. Twisted-pair, coaxial, and fiber-optic cabling within a building environment are difficult and expensive to install, maintain, and change. Labor and material costs for wiring can reach $1000 per node just for copper wire; coax and optical-fiber costs are considerably higher....

Given the expense and performance limitations of hard-wired networking for in-building applications, the concept of using electromagnetic energy to transmit data becomes an attractive alternative. Some observers believe portable computers are an independent driving force with the potential of dominating wireless applications. However, wireless data transfer has its own limitations. (Electronic Design Report, p. 51)

Flashback > 25 Years Ago

MARCH 15, 1977
Power reductions as large as 80%, density boosts of 2 to 1, and speed improvements by factors of three signalled advances in NMOS memory design at last month's Solid-State Circuits Conference.

The size of a new static memory cell developed by designers at Mostek, Carrollton, Texas, has been reduced so much—to just 2.75 mil2—that a 4-k RAM chip, the MK4104, can measure 136 × 184 mil. But what's even better, the power dissipation has dropped drastically to a mere 80 mW in the active state—about 20% of the power normally required by an NMOS 4-k RAM. (News Scope, p. 21)

Flashback > 40 Years Ago

MARCH 15, 1962
Encouraging progress in development of solid-state microwave power sources was reported at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference. Varactor frequency multipliers, despite many design and component problems, are beginning to win acceptance for system applications; improved tunnel-diode oscillator circuits are providing modest, but useful, power at increasingly higher microwave frequencies.

In varactor multipliers, a major obstacle to widespread system use is nonuniformity of diode performance. The "educated screwdriver" remains a most essential design tool, according to participants in a lively and candid evening session on microwave power sources. (News, p. 38)

TV Poll Results: We EEs are definitely not Average Joes. Unlike the vast American public, we strongly prefer documentary and nature shows. Along with the challenge of viewing such brain candy, we like to see some action, as opposed to the boredom of talk. Visit our Web site (www.elecdesign.com) to take other polls.

Television programming you enjoy the most
Action
15%
Animated
2%
Comedy
6%
Documentary/Nature
32%
Drama
11%
Games
4%
Mystery
13%
Sports
6%
Talk
4%
Other
7%


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