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When the going gets tough, rugged connectors deliver

February 18, 2014 11:58 am | by David Cianciolo, Director of Engineering, Fischer Connectors | Fischer Connectors | Comments

When you’re designing equipment for extreme conditions or critical situations, high performing components are essential, and rugged connectors offer a reliable solution for the toughest situations. Rugged connectors are engineered for a variety of demanding applications, including extreme temperatures....

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Eco-cables: The next generation of control cabling

February 18, 2014 11:17 am | by Rob Toenies, product manager at Newark element14 | Newark | Comments

Eco-material cables, or eco-cables, are the next generation in control cabling. Poised to replace standard polyvinyl chloride (PVC) cables, eco-cables are becoming more and more popular due to the performance and environmental benefits they provide.

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The microcontroller as metaobject

February 13, 2014 6:28 am | by Joshua Israelsohn, Director, JAS Technical Media | Comments

Pretty much everyone in our industry is familiar with the long evolution of microcontrollers. So familiar that it’s easy to miss changes in our industry and society, both positive and negative, that accompanied that evolution just as we tend not to see daily changes in our own aging faces.

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Introducing ECN's Editorial Advisory Board

February 12, 2014 3:47 pm | by ECN Staff | Comments

We’re always looking to expand our expertise and knowledge base here at ECN, and our new board is made up of the industry elite with a broad range of engineering expertise that we’ll be utilizing throughout the year. These industry experts will serve as advisors, writers, industry contacts and a plethora of other roles....

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GaN-based transistors take to the sky to capture the action

February 12, 2014 11:25 am | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Comments

When Ray Breslin and Emil Rottmayer attempted a highly daring escape from a super-high security prison in this fall’s thriller Escape Plan, audiences got up close to see (spoiler alert!) our two heroes — played by Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger, respectively — engage in a gunfight with the prison’s “crew”....

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Obtaining low power for industrial devices: Energy harvesting, batteries or hybrids?

February 11, 2014 8:03 am | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Comments

The concept of energy harvesting has been around for as long as windmills and waterwheels were used to harness energy. In the last decade, the possibilities of using low-power harvested energy have greatly expanded in the industrial market as devices became smaller, autonomous and required less power.

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What’s the biggest challenge for designs that utilize touch-enabled displays?

February 10, 2014 3:35 pm | Ocular, Inc., Applied Materials | Comments

Take a look at virtually any new smartphone or tablet device, and whatever the brand or size, they likely have one thing in common — touch screen displays. This ubiquitous level of adoption comes with challenges, particularly pricing and volume yields to meet mass market needs. The touch-enabled display represents one of the largest cost factors....

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Google tries ferry service for workers in East Bay

February 3, 2014 3:51 pm | by AP | Comments

Google workers who live in the East Bay can now make the commute to the company's Silicon Valley campus by sea. For a week, anyway. Starting Monday, the agency that operates San Francisco Bay Ferry says Google will provide a private ferry service between Harbor Bay terminal in Alameda to the Port of Redwood City.

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Feds want cars to be able to talk to each other

February 3, 2014 3:48 pm | by Joan Lowy, AP | Comments

 Raising hopes of preventing many deadly collisions, transportation officials said Monday they plan to propose requiring automakers to equip new cars and light trucks with technology that lets vehicles communicate with each other .

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Companies back fast Internet-in-schools initiative

February 3, 2014 3:43 pm | by AP | Comments

The White House says it's lined up private support for President Barack Obama's pledge to connect 15,000 schools and 20 million students with high-speed Internet service over the next few years.A White House education event Tuesday will focus on his ConnectED initiative.

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Low-power design considerations to enable effective health and fitness bio-patch solutions

January 22, 2014 11:05 am | by Rafael A. Mena, Systems Manager, Texas Instruments | Texas Instruments | Comments

Bio-patch solutions are sensors worn on the body to enable continuous (or semi-continuous) monitoring of physiological and cognitive parameters without tethering the patient or athlete to a wired hub. They are poised to revolutionize the health and fitness market and create new ways of providing healthcare in clinical and remote settings.

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Mobility in medicine: Designing the personal health care experience

January 21, 2014 12:03 pm | by Rajeev D. Rajan, Senior Director, Product Management, Qualcomm | Comments

The last decade has seen rapid growth and adoption of mobile computing devices, such as smartphones and tablets, by both consumers and enterprises, and the health care industry is no exception.  Health care providers, clinicians and medical device manufacturers are seeking new and innovative ways to leverage the power of mobile....

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Keeping the feel in automotive touch controls

January 21, 2014 10:23 am | by Mark Toth, Texas Instruments | Comments

Touchscreen interfaces on smartphones and tablets have swept through the consumer electronics industry, with hundreds of millions of these touch-based devices sold each year. An entire generation of children is growing up with touch as the primary interface to their electronics, rather than physical interfaces like keyboards, mice, buttons, and so on.

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Which way WiFi?

January 20, 2014 3:52 pm | by Joshua Israelsohn, Technical Contributor | Comments

WiFi users in densely populated urban locales experience signal interference from nearby unassociated WiFi networks. Additionally, significant growth in the number WiFi-enabled mobile devices has added to user dependency on WiFi channels and to the data traffic those channels carry.

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Automotive electronics advances usher in a greater need for circuit protection

January 20, 2014 11:26 am | by VP Pai, Vice President of ProTek Devices | ProTek Devices | Comments

Every year, the automotive industry introduces more features that leverage advanced electronics. Many of these new electronics features are marketed for occupant safety, entertainment and conveniences. Vehicles are introduced with systems for blind spot warnings, lane departure warnings, accident warnings, parking assistance, and much more.

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