The Hitchhiker's Guide to PCB Design

The Hitchhiker's Guide to PCB Design

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8 I an opened his email and was pleased to find an offer to work as an electronics engineer developing PCB designs for E-Z Galaxy. E-Z Galaxy is an established product development company not far from Zagon University, where Ian had just graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering. On his first day, Ian was shown to his new office by a robot named "Otto," who performed all the company orientation and HR routines automatically. Upon Ian's arrival, Otto performed a full-image body scan on Ian and prompted him to state his name and title aloud. "Ian, engineer… Er, uh, PCB designer," Ian responded. "Match. Welcome to E-Z Galaxy where experience moves aside for automation," Otto said in a rather monotone electronic voice. "Please follow me to your office". Otto rolled past Ian and led him along a hallway of engineering office doors to a "de-escalator," which carried them down a single floor to a solid oak office door. On it hung a sign that read: Designer of Printed Circuits. Behind it was a basement office filled with old furniture and drafting equipment from the sixties era. A drafting table, some T-squares, a light table, and ink pens were neatly positioned throughout the room. Ian noticed a new desktop computer set up on an old oak desk. Otto rolled toward Ian and said, "Ian, you have been hired to replace Robert Gridmaster. He was automatically retired after accumulating 4,200 hours of vacation time during his long tenure with the company." "How long did Mr. Gridmaster work here as a PCB designer? " Ian asked Otto. "42 years," Otto said. "This guy must have reached PCB design guru status." Ian uttered under his breath. "It must have been difficult to let him go." "May your lack of experience, coupled with our culture of automation serve E-Z Galaxy well," Otto responded. Then he rolled out the door. After a few more days, Ian met some co-workers who had heard Ian was the new PCB designer replacing Robert Gridmaster or "Old Bob" as they called him. When Ian asked about Old Bob's office and specifically, the process he used to design PCBs for the company, nobody could tell him much. They just went on about how they were going to miss him because he made PCB design look so easy. It wasn't long before Ian began to discern his co-workers didn't really have a large depth of knowledge regarding Old Bob and his role as a PCB designer. Chapter 1 A New Design Gig

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