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Hardware is Hard

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Hardware is Hard
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If you've been around the hardware world, or backed a kickstarter that's manufacturing something, you've seen the delays, the apparent excuses, the the updates that just sound crazy. Well, turns out those excuses and crazy sounding updates are more likely true than not. I intend on trying to pull back the curtain on how hardware is built, and some of things that software folks take for granted in how our hardware gets made and delivered.
Slide rule Building Server (computing) Computer animation Software Multiplication sign Computer hardware Data storage device Right angle Service-oriented architecture Event horizon Perspective (visual)
Software Robotics Multiplication sign Computer hardware Data storage device Energy level Computer architecture Number Physical system Software bug
Building Scaling (geometry) Multiplication sign Projective plane Physicalism Computer Entire function Software bug Bit rate Software Lecture/Conference Graphics software Compilation album
Graph (mathematics) Open source Multiplication sign Model theory Projective plane Virtual machine Bit Category of being Voting Kernel (computing) Causality Computer hardware Whiteboard Series (mathematics) Compilation album
Point (geometry) Greatest element Length Line (geometry) Tracing (software) Dimensional analysis Befehlsprozessor Different (Kate Ryan album) Semiconductor memory Personal digital assistant Square number Right angle System on a chip Whiteboard Error message Associative property Physical system
Greatest element Computer animation Buffer solution Planning Whiteboard Tracing (software) Alpha (investment)
Complex (psychology) Real number Planning Numbering scheme Bit Perspective (visual) Computer Power (physics) Component-based software engineering Computer animation Motherboard Semiconductor memory Computer hardware Whiteboard
Pairwise comparison Building Kernel (computing) Computer animation Projective plane Numbering scheme Whiteboard Quicksort Student's t-test Number
Point (geometry) Email Multiplication sign HD DVD Physicalism Bit Shape (magazine) Perspective (visual) Web 2.0 Word Film editing Computer hardware Square number Software testing Whiteboard Form (programming)
User interface NP-hard Area Point (geometry) Axiom of choice Curve Dialect View (database) Multiplication sign Model theory Maxima and minima Function (mathematics) Disk read-and-write head Word Software Personal digital assistant Computer hardware Videoconferencing Text editor Right angle Whiteboard Bounded variation Form (programming)
Greatest element Process (computing) Wage labour Multiplication sign Sheaf (mathematics) Circle Staff (military) Line (geometry) Whiteboard Product (business)
Point (geometry) Computer program Computer file Open source File format Multiplication sign Digitizing Online help Entire function Product (business) Word Process (computing) Computer animation Software Whiteboard Computer-assisted translation
Point (geometry) Goodness of fit Open source Multiplication sign Computer hardware Device driver Disk read-and-write head Computer Usability
Point (geometry) Addition Arm Observational study Open source Multiplication sign Bit Product (business) Latent heat Process (computing) Lecture/Conference Personal digital assistant Touch typing Software testing
Personal identification number Personal digital assistant Multiplication sign Mathematical analysis Cuboid Solid geometry Form factor (electronics) Cartesian coordinate system Booting Product (business)
Crash (computing) Multiplication sign Flash memory Videoconferencing Matrix (mathematics) Control flow Arrow of time International Date Line Resultant Shareware Speichermodell
Point (geometry) NP-hard Building Thread (computing) State of matter Real number Multiplication sign Set (mathematics) Mereology Event horizon Perspective (visual) Product (business) Formal language Revision control Internet forum Different (Kate Ryan album) Computer hardware Energy level Physical system Computer-aided design Software developer Bit Connected space Word Process (computing) Computer animation Whiteboard Quicksort Arithmetic progression
Point (geometry) Building Greatest element Multiplication sign Cyberspace Student's t-test Computer Power (physics) Number Product (business) Avatar (2009 film) Sign (mathematics) Prototype Component-based software engineering Computer cluster Computer hardware Energy level Software testing Error message Computer architecture Physical system Condition number Scaling (geometry) File format Planning Bit Line (geometry) Degree (graph theory) Type theory Word Digital rights management Uniform resource locator Process (computing) Computer animation Software Drill commands Personal digital assistant Motherboard Information retrieval Computer science Vertex (graph theory) Video game Website Right angle Whiteboard Local ring Resultant
Polar coordinate system Complex (psychology) Computer program Randomization Building Group action State of matter Multiplication sign Execution unit 1 (number) Open set Disk read-and-write head Mereology Perspective (visual) Tracing (software) Preorder Different (Kate Ryan album) Videoconferencing Electronic visual display Damping Physical system Arm Software developer Data storage device Database transaction Bit 3 (number) Process (computing) Order (biology) Right angle Pattern language Quicksort Whiteboard Reading (process) Point (geometry) Web page Dataflow Server (computing) Vapor barrier Open source Patch (Unix) Student's t-test Number Power (physics) Goodness of fit Prototype Bridging (networking) Operator (mathematics) String (computer science) Computer hardware Energy level Contrast (vision) Computer-assisted translation Hydraulic jump Form (programming) Computer architecture Time zone Default (computer science) Pairwise comparison Matching (graph theory) Key (cryptography) Computer-aided design Forcing (mathematics) Projective plane Model theory Tableau Word Software Integrated development environment Motherboard Library (computing)
Computer animation
well I'd like to thank you all for and coming
and I'm kind of the elite person on the docket as
they only asked me yesterday if I would give us to give a talk and I happen to have something in my there that this talk my back pocket so animated mad destined the slides have to fit this more interesting things I want to talk about in the stock and this is obviously a harder is harder softer perspective on building hardware so which which go ahead and start with a server this there's not a lot in here but I wanna ask some quick questions see what everybody there can get an idea of where the is that I'm hoping that everybody in this room actually build software right is there anybody who doesn't build software when it morning you can use think about the you the more how many of you build hardware the didn't raise your hand at either of those but but but but but at can who's at uh who in this room has ever actually events have external here how many of you or or you know something like Kickstarter handing you back something on Kickstarter we so there is a EU you can answer the next question easily how many of you have actually gotten that thing you backed on Kickstarter with that at at at at at at at at the you know how many of you have no that's undergoing Kickstarter and it's been delayed indefinitely like for the next 10 million years this and they keep telling you it's coming it's coming OK so in about half the people the back that more than half the people who elected but something and how many of you have that something is just never showed up and gone bankrupt and they've store all your money and you cried and but very sad the that and the simplest question I can ask how many of you 0 building software and you know I think that harbors really really easy in that you write a hundred per cent of the time and it's never broker and however I think client-server of a broken
th is that of OK so Anais's actually guess I get negative reunited where you have and of using background the and was offered at the end
that I I uh 1 of IT systems architecture that kind of stuff I'm not normally a harbor diet but a number of years the number of years ago I just building things robots and this and that and as time progressive actually got but more and more low level and more and more hardware centric the and by software you know by by building software know storage things what not what I really mean is that I write a lot of bugs that since the softrank fix later maybe sort of as
you know we we will write software we all know that we wanna go back and fix all these bugs and things that physical new feature and work on not necessarily these you know these old bugs that nobody ever sees the but 1 of the really neat things about software is that when things rate at fixed them and a compilation time
even for early even a fix any of these bugs you know is relatively small and I use relatively small in a cosmic scale not in a you're staring at your computer and all you want to do is compile this and constantly 1 affects us and mean what was the longest thing anybody in here as compact there anything that you normally compiled takes you know 5 minutes an hour anybody longer than an hour fear typical project the building entire distrust but but 5 hours the British that's that's some pretty big bill bodybuilding editor all agenda
about this set up series to any it only took you 5 hours and depleted the ozone layer and cause global warming OK said a longer than 5 hours per a typical compile so far there is no I agree that that activity although you're you're building an entire destroyed that's not a In the grants to think about to that well here is a little bit different the hardware the compilation time if you just look at this from a pure do know how long it takes to get from you started something to you had something physically in your hand is a little bit longer than it is at at a really rough idea of how long this takes of this graph is in seconds but because that is that the Linux kernel which is what's up there on your left of doesn't take that long to compile even on a really really slow machine these days on the flip side the time it takes to compile a chunk of hardware it's really really long time and you know most suffer votes to think about the compilation time model that the design time the bitch and the Barbara as just the time it takes to lay it out you know I do the schematic laid out and you don't see what's going to be there for the board however that doesn't take into the 8
a into account the physical properties of taking your digital assets and converting them into a real physical thing that you actually start testing your software on and you give me an idea so on i work on an open-source harbor project called the aboard so Adam X 6 based
system what I'm going to show you right now and the actual physical layers of the PCB that the board is built from and I'm going to try and point out a few things to try and really had on exactly how complicated this borders right and the there's a whole lot of layers all stacked three-dimensionally the and in some cases are this is where 1 actually on in some cases some of the traces that have to go from the associates itself to other points on the board have to be absolutely exactly the same the margin of difference is you know measured in Adams in some cases and specifically if you look kind to the the right of the board just underneath a thing that looks like a big giant square I wish it actually just like point because it really doesn't make any sense as a bunch of little squiggly lines the In this way the lines are the traces is from the main CPU the SSE are in main memory so DB error of 3 memory in this case and those tracers specifically have to be exactly the same length all of and there's a lot of traces and has a lot of edits for different ships that span from that about 2 of them are on the bottom and 2 of them are on the top and all of those traces from the SOC to those 4 chips all have to be exactly the same way in 3 dimensions it so started you know get into exactly how complicated this as live on their teased and the the 3 again see a lot more of the school festival of traces up there
therefore again pretty boring other
boring layers have a tendency to the ground plane so that and you can are out to grant signal back and act as a buffer of alpha the find pretty boring only still
get a bunch of the squabble traces the the
but at themselves the we finally get to
the top of the board the because of the to this is isn't
can lay board which on there is a 10 physical layers including the top to the bottom and 8 in a tracer in a trace layers to this board this is on the board itself is about yea big there's a lot going on here there's a lot that it goes on in harbor manufacturing and typically the way the uh aboard works is the smaller against the bound to more layers for complicated design the bigger it gets the purely as you need because you spread everything out and so on so the men aboard tinted about yea big I we had stack at the stack it up to about 10 layers justified up all of the routing on onto the board which can see here and was just stack them all up on top of each
other as if this was around the city the
thank it's kind of boring after you get the the
the ground plane layers in between everything the and that's this is a full x 86 computer the start from a design perspective and its price behind in the in the grand scheme of things it's such a problem of the most complicated board so you can actually get and play with and still have it be open hardware on you know things again substantially bigger you know you started here talking real PC motherboards at that point on and they're not the complexity the board actually doesn't really change dramatically the the main components of a really hard around PC on you know that the main memory as well as all the power that has to get drawn by the major of set the but while this is a really really complicated this talk about something a little bit different there little bit simpler this is a board I recently did
I have for project have really really simple but it was added to be done on a really tight deadline it's basically just a simple soldering can the the scheme that's the entire schematic for the war when
say simple I really mean simple so for those of you who are not used to seeing schematic designs of the thing on the far left is a battery are 1 is a resistor and obviously LED 1 is an LED that's all there is to this board this is probably 1 of the simplest things that 1 could actually build on but up back and just the LED AP right so the topic so the LED since the
center there is a uh a battery and then there is a student can't see their right on from the schematic of the but again you know so I I showed you where you know how long it actually takes to build something in comparison to the Linux kernel to some sort for what such put numbers to that on to Rome numbers these numbers actually physically polled earlier to that out for that
exact words the took roughly a 3 inch by 3 inch bore although it's cut into our circular shape on most of the board manufacturing houses actually trying to by the square size not by the physics the actual physical size because that's just the way it has to come out of the system on so the fastest but that board can actually get made in a quot in quantity 150 pieces which is the fairly small wrong but for most courthouses these 3 days at which point each word costs 13 dollars and 63 cents per PCB or about 14 thousand dollars the you get that some 150 3 inch disks of of some copper and a bunch of a but the fiberglass may and actually it are being shipped this does not include actually getting it in your hands as how many days it takes to make it the however if you let time kind of go out a little bit further you know the price drops precipitously and this is kind of what happens in the real world manufacturing situation is a form of a suffer perspective we we expect once we're done with something once we've you know said great it compiles it passes all the tests we can ship it today and he
strode upon get hub and an hour later we made a tarball new made available on the web and e-mail and some of you know with hardware you know even you know once you've got all of your design files non out there ready and ship them off to manufacture this is what the local eufor how much it's going to cost you and how long they believe it's going to take however this does not always mean this is how long it takes this just how long it takes once they've decided everything's right and because a a whole slew of problems and a kind of run into these on nothing
ever works the way you expected in the world of hard work the the to give you an idea of why this is such a mess the the tools that are used to design hardware were almost all universally written either in the early 90 areas of sometime in the nineties the which means that the you eyes haven't been updated on since then there really kind of a pain in the butt to use so if you've ever tried playing with Blender even when there's actually a better user interface
experience then most CAD tools OK and if you've ever played with 1 of the 3 D modeling suffer it's a pain in the butt to use it's really complicated and the wording Kirby futile as we forms of what keynote earlier today it's kind of like the maxima text editor has become goes up and and for roles and then just sits there we can offers almost the same way because there are so many from knobs and dials you can turn to create a PCB that they that they kind of don't have much choice the other everything's going to be complicated everything's going to be hard so you got that problem and in even just trying to to define how many layers your PCB happens ends up in a very very complicated uh definition the because while you know a two-layer I when you create view which is at a head trace that goes from 1 side of the board to the other it's really simple there's no for to stop it just goes straight through onto board what happens when you have 4 layer board or formally aboard gets way more complicated to make his what they actually do have most of the time is create 2 2 layer boards glue them together and then deal with the videos are on and between on the 4 layers now in the simplest case they just take the B and they throw it all the way through all 4 layers however the this is our designers can get clever and since these are physically to different PCB you can actually have what's called blinder buried in the US so what this means is that of the blind case you have to be that runs only 2 layers on 1 side or the other and when the glued together this B is not supposed to actually touch except that if you do your definition wrong they do the at which point you've now short of the board and you just wasted however many dollars building a board and time which I just showed you can actually be a fair amount of time to get things done cheaply or a lot of money to get them done quickly to do given simple facts and this is again a 3 inch by 3 inch board that's too bad to PCB layers which is just about the simplest thing you can do now with the 2 airborne you don't have to worry about things like blind and varied vias but on a more complicated design for whatever reason this could be a an issue when you get up to something like the middle word which I was just showing you the really you the 10 whereas blind injury via as get really really complicated really really fast and people don't like to use them ah well they designers like to use them that houses like to do them slightly different so that you know so you got problems with the software being really really kind of holding crappy and hard to use the learning curve is ridiculous trying to define things correctly is really really hard the documentation socks I said I'm apparently just read giving Leslie's talk for the secret this but should accept I'm talking about 1 and he it even if you do everything right and send it off to the manufacture and in fact on the is this this treatment plants designed it they e-mailed me back immediately and said you're a you're Gerber's which are the guys if you familiar with 3 D printing Berbers are kind of like the gecode output it's what they're actually going to build the board from like it's all broken into disaster and were what they were complaining about me back up here and the here is the if you look at the battery holder which is down there
at the bottom you'll see a circle with with a
couple of lines on either side what this actually ends up looking like on the PCB is a circle with a circle on the inside of so who I have I was in a with something like this time as it
actually exposed on the board and they were freaking out over this particular design for a battery holder because they had never seen it before which when it which leads into a very interesting conclusions every time you send the board off to a board manufacturer there is a physical person on the other side to not only review everything that's going on on that design but then has to go and you can work behind you to modify it for whatever reason to go through the process and to get it into their their manufacturing process and you think about this for a 2nd in 2016 can solve for is so horrible and the design tools or stay and the the the production tools are so bad that every single company it basically has to hire people to go and manually mark with things to get it all to work I mean if a if you think about this for a 2nd it's a miracle that anything gets built and actually works but yes so they they and almost immediately have e-mail me they were complaining up a storm of my guys that's that's really the bottom this year 2032 battery it doesn't you know is as you can clearly see the even in a even up there on the screen on the board here those 2 2 sections are connected it's fine for it really it's kind of like it was it was kind enough but but but with things like that happen even a simple design this delays production substantially they that this particular design lost more than a day over them asking me questions about because where is the cheapest place to find labor to ask these questions and do all this manual staff to get into your manufacturing process over in China and in Asia and all over the place which means that by the time they e-mailed me honestly the and by the time I wake up in the morning deal with everything get e-mail back to them variously so I now lost more than a day in just answering a simple question of no really it's OK just make it which unfortunately I'm you know and I talked about you know timelines are like in this stuff there's 1 other thing that sometimes goes and plays against a
timeline when you're really trying to get things done
quickly which unfortunately has tried to do with that meet deadline isonomia as a it Asia and delayed production out on a
production but shipping by an additional there which I push the entire production of everything out 2 instead of showing up on Friday which would have been on time to showing up on Monday 2 days later yeah so when we when you start thinking about stuff that's going on in the physical world as opposed to everything words were used to dealing with more you were really comfortable with during the digital world things a friggin Hall and they had quite literally almost everything is of fighting against you the tools the process he's you know just getting stuff made you know the I I had problems where I'm from the design tools you export everything into the this magical girl were common format which is really a really shitty format on and you send it off and they can't open for some reason you like that it's insofar fire all we have a different that program then you and so we can't open your zip file but again this is 20 16 if you want to act and act and I'm going to go out on a limb here if you wanna see it from the company that's really get got their shit together really really well take a look at Orchard park Park and Durey's gonna make funny for point and these guys in Europe but there are a a board manufacturer based out of Portland Oregon on and the accept rock a native file formats and he can I eagle cat so dads as an open source software and evil is a fit depending on whether you can fit into the hobbyist arena or not is the relatively inexpensive design tool but they they can take those files directly and generate a lot of the manufacturing processes automatically from that as opposed to having them do this intermediate of file format the so not that's really gonna help you there's a whole lot over here in Europe because shipping going to be ridiculously expensive but so I kind of spend a little time
complaining about how horrible design tools are and how hard it actually has to get something don't even really really simple things to concede however is actually hard and in fact if you think about this and the people that done device drivers in this room anybody anybody again a couple people so and the what the
people who done device drivers how often is the hardware right the letters of the the the or uh watching it and he's laughing he's the ease just laughing and putting his head down hardware is almost always wrong with because and that I've shown you kind are going 3 even just getting simple PCB is not even 86 or chips actually out the door PCB all hard getting in a sick is even harder and by the time you should everything off to get made either a desire of a manufacturing problem could short something out wrong because the manual people who have to deal with you know a putting all this stuff into the kind of good manufacturing computers can get it wrong something comes back flip or broken or a whole slew of other possibilities at which point you as a source for people have to figure out how to work around the problem if that's even possible and sometimes all there is to it self suggesting some questions about Kickstarter and uh the a crowdfunding things let's talk about some
much more interesting things that have failed or failing on then the need building a little 3 inch PCB that has an LED on so this thing is to be found Manocha anybody over here is actually a bit but it's uh an interesting from the that's actually noumenon prepare that is supposedly then in design and going to manufacturing for 2 years this is a the fact that it's actually fascinating from because even even despite the fact that it was announced 2 years ago they started taking money for it the bomb and everything the phone spectra actually still quite competitive so you did this should give you an idea of how far ahead of its expected time it was 2 years ago and they've only just in the last couple of weeks made it to the point where they have production enough PCB and design that they're going through FCC testing in the United States and for an intentional radiator you know going threats see is actually really
complicated process and it's really really kind of a pain in the ass but some of the things that they've actually had problems with is you know when they go to manufacturers of uh in various places they've had screw-ups they've had armed the companies actually get halfway through production of a PCB and it comes back completely failed the the arm and a whole slew of just general problems that you would never expect to see because you know we we all expect that when you want to compare abbreviations and you tell them what you want and magical thing just spits out but apparently that's not actually the way this works what happens is you go additions and you tell them what you want and the thing that you didn't ask for comes out and you ask them again and a slightly different thing that you didn't ask for comes up and you get this iterative process for a little while until you finally get to the point where they actually make the thing you want and then you told them don't touch it please make me workers and they touch it make you more of us so are the same as the I've found on in a specific a case study in mostly how trying out source your of your some of your design and a lot of your manufacturing actually work against you unless you're a you your big established player they can actually go through the use of the process a lot of a lot more and this is a product you guys I've actually seen over here has anybody
actually played with review here anybody no this is what I get for American if if the American in their own country on this is a product that actually came out of remember that had offered a spot on on but it's a small Arduino-based device that has a small LED screen on farm and they've uh put it into a relatively nice form factor based on that really successful Kickstarter I think these things were only 10 . return box with the screen attached to them in in the case and they made them up and ship them out and everything was going great so for all works on the manufacturing yields were fantastic and they get these
things in the box and they ship them and as soon as people got them and open them up they were working and everybody's freaking out about what the heck happened and it turns out before they put that plastic case onto it they were supposed to flash the boot-loader and they didn't manufacturing problem or somebody skip this step that they didn't think they needed to do at the manufacturing house and think about a thousand of these things went out basically break out of the box the and 2 armed to manufacture of credit the axis that OK what were not major should be is that it's kind of ridiculous here's how you can flash the bootloader but you will destroy the plastic casing getting to the pins to do this and we're just going to manufacture an extra however many they may have botched and ship them out so relatively it you know it's a solid success story and that I think the devices sold well we might be able to get them over here now on if you if you haven't played with 1 I would actually recommend the really quite cold the the zenith sentiment analysis 1 of the things that comes up on Kickstarter all the time is everybody wants to
build a bloody quadcopter I don't know why because the only thing the quadcopters do is come crash and break I see this as somebody who owns 4 of them and I think 3 of them are broken on but as there are actually a when they cannot undertake server they had a demo they they they talk
a really great talked about how this little cloud cover would be the follow you around and as you can see that this giant on LED matrix on it I can remember there was like we build arrows whether it was going to just be the flash dictate take that pictures of you in a whole slew of promises and of course everybody brought into the promise because its Kickstarter they had a really great video and they had a by the time anybody was really looking at at a lot of money that had been thrown at them and so more money got piled onto the existing money and the attempt to go and build these things and I think in the end the only got you out of the of thousands and thousands of people back them I think only about 500 of these got built which so for those of you on camera there is a lot of Scotland and the 5 of the got built and actually shipped out to people every single thing that this was supposed to do including flying they had they had unfortunately you come up with a really really great concept in this is something that happens on Kickstarter what because you know there are a lot of really great concepts out there you know everybody wants a teeny tiny little you know drawn the can follow them around just take random pictures well of maybe not everybody idle but the other people who do yeah skateboarding and snowboarding and you know extreme sports in 1 of the this would actually a really cool thing down with you or deny maybe even here at the conference I can see something flying around being silly but a concept is really hard to take from I can think of it actually pulling at all these guys had manufacturing problems they had designed the hardware design problems and hence often design prompts they basically of wished at every possible thing for the the project and as a result they basically burned through millions of dollars of other people's money not being able to deliver anything and this is probably 1 of the I think this may be to date the largest failure on Kickstarter on just because of how many people back and how much money got thrown at them and how old the way out how much this entire planted just greater now admittedly didn't at least they they did not to steal the money and run away so they tried which unfortunately brings me to something I back to on the
PGA printer which that couple years ago promised it to figure out how to do a 3 D printer with reasonably high accuracy for under 100 bucks and they end on up until a couple of months ago everybody thought that they were still in making forward progress on research and development and they gone through a couple of different ways of trying to figure out how to build a better light bulb basically i'm because when you're trying to get the you know a 3 D printer that's you know several thousand dollars down the price point of 100 dollars you're going to have to try and figure out how to make pieces that need to be highly accurate really really cheap and they found out of a bunch of harm ways to do this and they have they have actually gone and bought a lot of the parts to build these things unfortunately as it turns out a couple of months ago 1 of the founders of the company and the
Kickstarter embezzled something like 3 quarters of a million dollars out of the project and build the house the you it's so ignoring all the technical things that they they they have clearly made it past because they the literally ready to go to production they just now don't have the money that's a pile of the parts and all of the on the final design work that needs to be done for a are manufacturing which is you know uh basically not reoccurring engineering fees for building you know injection molds and you know laying out PCB is you know making the few custom parts that you need for your specific design and they don't have the money to buy the you know going by the parts and all of this and now there's a giant set of lawsuits and Canadian legal involved in it at the same the know and these are just there are a couple of examples of things that I'm I know of existing out in the real world of things that have just haptically failed some of them technical reasons some of them for non technical reasons and a lot of what makes hard really really hard is not the technical problems I mean I can write about CAD software for an hour if I really wanted to buy I can pull up Eagle actually now connectable beagle entry of foreign words on the of the detected problems are also I mean we're all smart people we all deal with sort for we'll deal with I mean and how many people in here currency we get you know enough people and in a big is you know basically broad access to the system and enough rope to hang you and 3 of your friends but we can get around that we've worked around that you know we've made a higher level languages like Ruby and Python node C + + even you can argue on that make you know the these really heard edges much easier to deal with so the from a technical perspective we can solve all problems all the problems and hard work almost exclusively are not technical problems are all problems with just how do how the entire process will some kind of you're trying to explain to a bunch of softer people just how horrible it is to make hardware how complicated it can be and how time consuming on you know the sending 1 other example the middle board you know the the the product they work on they can take in even small threads of the board you know where world will swap on the board can take 8 months to get through before you know from when we decided you know we're going to start something to when it actually comes out and if you take a look EDI engineering is doing a lot of the manufacturing for the middle were right now I just announced it IDF time Intel Developer Forum back in the states a new version of the middle board on that has to eat events on it that's been in development for many months the and it's not going to be on sale for several more the thank you and a and they're announcing things right now so yes but John kind of hoping says I'm there aren't a whole lot of you in here in the US have questions I can around right side a little bit on the fast side began to give you guys
some time back if for you want or I can see and I can answer any question you want about how hard words actually don't and I don't hardware and software the the
you might how the how can ask and ask a question and how many new vaccine major on our and you made it easy be sorted together and of so to so your heart and your eye homeward I and you didn't admit it figure out all the manager monitoring close enough to be an arbiter it at anybody know many other than these 2 nobody's made PCB and you have ever used a soldering iron again because you did not raise your hands find your local makers space go and ask them for a in a sorta get an honestly going on this and and I'm not being facetious about this it's 1 of the most liberating things you can do is realizing that you can actually fix that computers I mean and I've known to many people in my life who I gonads at all you just open up the computer and add a new graphics arts and the the literally tell me they are scared to open their computer and these are people who have a master's degrees in computer science and and boggles my mind to no end this these are people who we are supposed to understand the system at least at some level and don't even understand the architecture or the hardware that are actually working on it is enough to know that taking this the case off of your computer will not magically let all the magic smoke out it might but some of it out if you do something really stupid you know like all that screw you lost you know 10 minutes ago in the bottom in the key somewhere it wasn't important anyway it's just sort of between you know 12 5 4 the on the motherboard which that will let the magic smoker a lot of them yeah on this 2nd type of really funny story about letting magics encounter so about a number of years ago I was working for a company called the orion Microsystems they made that cluster computers so 12 computers on a single PCB the PCB was the and 48 layers end of the year the company that actually made the PCB at the time Om after they had done a few up for the production runs are specifically told us 1 they would continue making this board only for us 2 they would never make a board that it began and 3 they would never make a board with that many layers again the pain in the ass to manufacture this thing about if it's a 48 layer war they have to make manufacturer or 2 layers of time they got make 24 layers and then glue them all together and they have to do this with blind and buried vias which I've already discussed briefly so there are so many things that can go wrong a board of this of this size in the scale that would fill your conditions have it really interesting and had 1 specific prototype a an air gap ended up between a ground plane in a power plant on the board which most of the time is not a big you for most words is not a huge deal however on this board since it was so big was so much electrical current very moving through it the small pocket of air actually superheated and at the end it's like in the middle of this job I mean seriously boards like this so got 2 them that I hang on my wall of because I think a pretty the I know and as that super heated on it actually got so hot that it exploded and on a PCB the path of least resistance is not out through the top and bottom it's up to the edges because that's what's been glued so as we've got elected all this power this is like 10 years ago so this is you know a lot of actual power running to the board but we got we got the 10 foot what that flame out the edge of a board so it went to me says they let the magic smoke we really let the magic smoker the this and and and this is a more that we've been using for testing for weeks and it just happened at that point it was done with the universe it was going to explode needless to say we through the portal but a by it during the errors and I think this what and there's there's by stories all over the place if you've ever worked you know on a low-level systems probable for a company that builds hardware just the stories of things that come out I've seen PCB is done by cheap Chinese companies where of year you typically have a played fall on it and any age role hold because through the center roughly to the center of that gets filled we've seen that whole get exposed the drill hole be over here needless to say that was a dead board the we've seen it even to stop and place mission you would think that these are devices that are designed to build you know thousands of things exactly the same way every single time when we can have a 3 different anybody you know a couple people how actors retrieval the if that that that that that at the not that I mean if power you have to calibrate might be a better question that the all the uh and uh so I'll get that OK you're right that they all the major is executed calibration pretty well if you handle 3 printer my apologies you do nothing the calibrated for the rest of your life as a result of the human most of a handle on all the think about that on a device that needs to play something to with in some time like throngs of precision going to fail all the friggin died and the A. L was doing a building recently just watching the pick-and-place machine and every so often he would throw a component across the the idea would it would pick up the pieces they would go to put it in a place that would let it go a little too early in the park would fly over into the car the the and this and this is a reputable fracturing of location and this is the normal things that happen I mean how many and how many of us would expect software that just randomly decides to throw bits into a corner acceptable the all you didn't need those 3 least-significant bedsteads you it's good enough we but this is a demand you have to have some questions also offer people this is Harbor there's the black magic of but is that to to us this would yeah you what as far and can I do a um over the audience and do there any warning signs I had to look for a they what I think on 1 of the things that that I would suggest really paying attention to is who is behind the Kickstarter if it's a big company like avatar spark foreigners near somebody who's got a reputation already in an industry and they're going to deliver because that they're they're basically betting their own on reputation on the line with the the product itself on the site almost have no active you know iceberg finer out vertices your any of the any company that I've I've actually heard that I actually by other things from I would back them in a heartbeat get yelled particularly if I wanted to thank on if for no other reason than I am I know they've got the capabilities of doing the case in error although case in point the exact opposite about a 3 4 I back in a 3 printer from a company called formats it was complete crapshoot the bunch of the MIT students who were building something on and had a lot of really good things to say about what they were trying to do but none of them it actually ever gone and build something and made it made a full
product out of it got out the door is you know they were students they wanted at MIT now the only thing that I think on that particular Kickstarter that really sold that they want would just take my money and run away was that he they had assembled and how they were talking about what they were going to do that being said you know that there are examples in in what I was showing you know the the the PG printer that the drone you know these are things that were backed by a lot of people and so there was a lot of people looking at the videos and you know the the documentation and what not and you know we all got you know the the wool pulled over eyes or something happened over there where these kinds of things and at the end of the day what I can say about Kickstarter is don't get back anything Our don't spend any of the money on Kickstarter Indiegogo or whatever the the crowdfunding thank and less you're OK with never seen that money again it was really and you I I wanna say that on you know that that everything's going to be you know magical if you look for this 1 thing is it's not just 1 thing it's basically put your money into into a hole and hope that something magical pops back out I it is that there's it's yeah the Justice I I don't think any of us are going to stop backing these things because every so often something comes along a along you go that's cool I want that to exist and that's kind of the same way with open source software you know we all go up the you know this is a cool idea this is something I need but I'm going to go scratch let's all Kickstarter is kind of a way for people who wanted you share the thing that they're building with other people vital Arbitron blue in the face but if you want a copy of it it you know and you want a copy of it stops making sense for me to be doing it for myself and actually go and start the triangulated surface of of so yeah that the which 1 of Agilent haven't yet I drive really have to if if it's not yet in the Magellan how is it is another 1 of those big you know they they have everything going for them and they still basically fail and I I don't remember exactly what will happen with an know the broad strokes off the top of my head if I'm sorry yeah i it's it's 1 of those situations again a if you're going about something to be prepared that that thing will never exist and you just wasted a lot of money and I mean people like to think of Kickstarter is like a store our preorder kind of thing you know really what you're doing is you're you're giving these people money in the hopes that they will actually be able succeed at the time and you'll get this magical other thing out of the and and it's it's it's more like you're an angel investor then you silent angel investor than any so the yes I do actually have some experience with some non Asian manufacturers and generally speaking there a little bit the nice and work with if for no other reason you know that then the time zone differences are not so extreme so when they have problems they can on the turn-around time substantially less it's not like you know they run into a problems and then by the time it's resolved it's 24 to 48 hours later on J. and generally speaking you know that this stuff that's coming out of them is just a you know is either as good a quality if not better usually the thing that really makes them from a but less attractive to the user substantially more expensive and that's including shipping and that that I just put an order in for a small soldering kid that's going to make a fair and next we can't actually are and it was it's actually cheaper for me to go and get the the PCs manufactured arms in transaction on and shipped to the United States and time than to try and get somebody in the United States to make them time and it sucks I would much rather you deal with somebody in the US but when a it's a 10th the cost they get the manufacture the other way around and the and there are different there are better places to go and look for PCBs of anybody ever wants to go and actually building around stuff table that he can take a look at the can on and there's a great place to go and get and I pray you know just we hand-wavy pricing numbers for PCB is called PCB shopper although they're actually really good about you know you you use you fill in this giant form it's like seriously this 1 it's not question so you probably never understand unless you go in Google half of the questions usually leaving the default is fine usually with that with that I and and they'll go in the pre a lot of different manufacturers of a PC these and I have yet to have any problems with the with the manufacturers that they had suggested in your mileage will vary etc. etc. and I'm not trying to advocate anybody and saying they're an interesting place to go and look and the got that it's easier than trying to find a random PCB shop online so anyone else and the people and so on on the book the dead and so on the the question is do I know of any project better they're trying to make a cat's off about the best 1 I know of right now is key cat which is an open-source CAD design of justice sulfur and in fact it's getting a lot of really neat features because som arm is using the cat for all of their designs so they they actually just pushed in some of those the there is this kind of joke that the cat world that there's never trust the operator which is the strongest offer the traceroute all the traces for you it usually doesn't wrong almost always has a long on the they just push patches in the key cat I was about a year ago I now that the differential pair routing but to match uh Langston Hughes at which this is huge in a chunk of open source of folks this is you know sometimes the holy grail of how expensive some Council debts on so there's huge strides being made in the open source software world for this and if you that if you wanna go and spend some time by key gets the where would go so you had a question the OK the of and yes the fact that have happened yes you the we in yes you yes the good things and so as so I will put some things in perspective how much do people think CAD software this like that the high and can't for cost about that how many people think it's a problem about thousand 10 thousand again more and you're in the right ballpark it's usually 10 thousand dollars an so there's a lot of money per se on that's invested in really good CAD software and for the most part you know that the kind of people were going to be in this room you don't need that level of CAD software by far I mean that's the kind of stuff that you're making server motherboards way or you know laying out you know actually more than you know chips that way but it's a kind of idea do something we did was sleep complex that 48 layer words you don't do any people can the I'm not even sure Eagle CAD has enough about suffer behind even handle that I am so yes there there there there's a lot of money and just the status quo but things like the cat are actually you know since people want to use open-source tools to make open source you make open source designs you know people are pushing all of the things that are in these higher and of software back into things like you at that she can suffers from some really interesting problems that are exactly the same problems that every other do piece of a and suffering the open source
world suffers from it's really horrible you I II and III and I want didn't love you of the U I and 1 of Sofitel horrible because when online people were really nice and so that their their process flows inside and CAE-CAD where you end up actually using 4 different programs at all have to communicate and we're 1 way patterns to make it all it to make everything work now you end up with a really nice board at the end but some of the weeds between the various steps in the program are a little less intuitive than some of the other chunks of sort for the other Eagle CAD makes uh the flow actually fairly simple and fairly straightforward so if you're trying to learn something even cats not a bad way to go if you're willing to put up with the licensing if you really want to stay you know true the open-source hardware and suffer stuff he can't on your best bet they get people are people are actually investing a fair amount of time and effort in this things like CAE-CAD right now to to fix the various proceed issues that are there any people scratching their in their specific it is right and if you look back another big chunks of software like blender and what not that had really horrible UI issues at some point somebody gets a really solid it's to go and fix the UI problems the and I think for room probably gonna start getting close to somebody getting really annoyed 1 affects us so and in many and I don't I don't know how long it's going take 4 can't offer to get better now if that that the barrier of entry is more more used to like you eyes and systems the 2 decades all the entries with the of you don't have to be that much better to turn the kind of display so some of us but yeah so am I I'm actually actively on I'm going to start putting all my design work over 2 key counters the force myself the learner and I'm pretty sure I'm going to end up with an somewhere that's going to need to be fixed if and my wife actually wants to do stuff to so she's from an underprivileged groups the yeah and required and so and a lot of you will get you they get the early eighties who you yes of the of the of the uh a the In that 2 more years so if you have you can do it and if you look at the at all so the and and yet so to summarize that for the camera it's basically a bunch of people who made some back-end software in the early eighties or somewhere along time ago like GCC decided that at some point he needed you iso the GCC developers made a URI for GCC is kind of their at which I would like you can imagine when you either GCC would look like actually have nightmares about the of the and the the of you the so the question is is can I kind of do a quick comparison and can come contrast against you can't legal on the simplest the simplest comparison is key cat doesn't force you into a size and where restriction whereas legal obviously does are just because it was the other big things are going to see coming from Eagle going to keep had on you know when you design your own part because of course every part of the universe does not have a magical part in every CAD software which means you then have to go in design your own parts for everything and each manufacturing where each design house has this giant library of words that had to go custom-made that's almost the bread-and-butter honestly on the the way you design that anti-cancer from substantially more complica is substantially more obnoxious to the to do it's not quite as streamlined as where you would expect and legal and I I assume you've had to do your own part at some point on at least Eagle it's not too weird in the cat it's a little cumbersome on it's doable but it's just it's how you do it doesn't match with the way you would probably think about his work on and that's really the the uh the pieces in cat it's just you end up with a separate programs to do very stupid things active followed units model really work really well it's except that when you're doing this from a URI perspective the jumps between uh the server programs can be a little bit but it's more jarring than you'd expect yes he can't actually fairly well documented on and there's a lot of tutorials and what not out there and there's just as many tutorials fatigue yet is a israel so I mean if you you know kind of muddled your way through legal on the cat will be that different and the upside is once you know 1 chunk and CAD software you know roughly what's possible so you you know I should be able to do this you know where I go in look environments and you might have to go off on a little bit but you really can itself any other questions comments concerning all so in the years are amazing things and on depending on what you're doing and they can they may be there the right thing to do on your protecting with the downside that is the your basically on a path to do in a sick on actual arm as opposed to making a full 1 more so there there's things that you can do an FPGA that you can do other things but there's stuff that you can't do enough reading like you can't build an accelerometer inside an FPGA Misenum think you can if you can I I'm happy to get get corrected but will you know that these kind of you the the kinds of things where you would and put these on board or something are a slightly different than what you would use for that that you wanted a prototype a custom us if your architecture FPGA so clearly the way to go because you don't have to go and you know spend millions of dollars setting things up to go and you make your own a stake and then find out that you short 12 of the layers that empower many layers on your your eye on your chest and then have to spend a couple more million dollars you know fixing state of and I and I know a lot of different companies and our money we come when I was at a rival to systems of the things we were doing we're actually prototyping self bridges on CPU Selfridges about a decade ago in the largest FPGA so we can get we can still only R. simulate a quarter of the self are of the order of really precision but but on the and I love of pages for things get it the the only downside to trying to like add an FPGA to design you've already got that like an open problem design effigies of really fickle for on on what power they need and the very power hungry typically on so keep that in mind that is not designed for them will be more complicated if you had to use on the other thing to worry about is that the armed a string change the uh how you create a softer actually runs on the PGA has a tendency to be proprietary there's only a couple of years our right and I think have a completely open source toolchain for men than from otherwise you think you know almost all the altar and armed I can't do the other come and sorry some non-trivial there there's Valenciennes violent thank you on these islands ones are there's a proprietary and fortunately so and I think people try to commence the next talk so I'm going to capture the stuff that thank you very much and I hope you guys enjoy a