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Stamped spring pin features cycle life of 125,000 insertions

February 6, 2014 2:42 pm | Ironwood Electronics, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Ironwood Electronics (Eagan, MN) recently introduced a new BGA socket addressing high performance requirements for testing BGA devices - SBT-BGA-7019. The contactor is a stamped spring pin with 31 gram actuation force per ball and cycle life of 125,000 insertions.

Crimp pins available in both gold and tin plating options

February 5, 2014 1:56 pm | Mill-Max Mfg. Corp. | Product Releases | Comments

Mill-Max Mfg. Corp. (Oyster Bay, NY) announces the addition of new crimp pins to their selection of wire termination products.  These new pins are commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) equivalents to the popular Mil-Spec M39029 crimp pins.

How outsourcing went horribly wrong

February 5, 2014 11:56 am | by Alan Nicol, Executive Member, AlanNicolSolutions | Blogs | Comments

If your own organization hasn’t jumped onto the bandwagon and outsourced most or all of its manufacturing to specialty houses or to lower-cost countries, then you have been reading a great many articles and posts about the trend. There is much debate over the effectiveness of the strategy....

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This is what it’s like to fly a fighter jet

February 4, 2014 3:27 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Flying in a fighter jet isn’t an experience most of us will ever have. Personally, I’ve never had the urge, but for some, not being able to soar like Maverick is heartbreaking. Luckily for any wannabe pilots, Metropolis Entertainment — who make footage for simulators for places like this one which will show at London’s Science Museum — are more than willing to share the wealth.

Chemical weapons: Then and now

February 4, 2014 1:47 pm | by Steven Pike, Managing Director of Argon Electronics | Blogs | Comments

Sadly, human history offers all too many examples of how chemical weapons can be used to devastating effect. The employment of chemical warfare agents (CWAs) dates back to at least as far as 1000 BC, when the Chinese used arsenical smokes as weapons.

The F-35 is "a failure waiting to happen"

February 4, 2014 1:19 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Here’s an oldie but goodie. Last year, Four Corners — an Australian current affairs program — did an expose on the troubled F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program, and their conclusions were ... none-too complimentary. Like their American counterparts, Australia is pursuing a one-size-fits all solution....

How true love opened the smart bra

February 4, 2014 12:38 pm | by Melissa Barnes, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

When Microsoft reported plans for a smart bra equipped with sensors to help keep track of your health and mood, I scoffed at the idea. The concept of smart bras seemed a passing gimmick, and the comments from other critics on my previous blog on the topic seemed to agree.

Digital or handwritten? The note-taking debate

February 3, 2014 3:42 pm | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

I was always that kid in school— the biggest nerd; the one whose notes were color-coded in shorthand only I could read. In college, everyone said taking notes on a laptop was superior. Recently, Princeton University teamed up with UCLA to test this scientifically, and the results are puzzling.

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Is the iPod's end in sight?

January 31, 2014 2:48 pm | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

It used to be weird to meet someone who didn’t have an iPod. Now it’s weird to meet someone who does. Is this a sign? Apple’s iconic music player has been on the scene for thirteen years now, and it has seen at least as many makeovers. iPods were extremely popular when first released. Sales climbed steadily for much of their life, but various sources report the iPod’s imminent demise, now more than ever.

Just how bad are America’s infrastructure problems?

January 31, 2014 12:55 pm | by Mike Collins | Blogs | Comments

Ever since the financial industry pushed the economy over the cliff and into the Great Recession, there has been a debate about investing in rebuilding our infrastructure to create new jobs. But just what is infrastructure and how much of it needs to be repaired or replaced?

The symbiotic relationship between editors and public relations

January 31, 2014 10:00 am | by Mark Shapiro, President, SRS Tech PR | Blogs | Comments

This kind of public relations is very different than the typical public relations strategies and campaigns used to promote restaurants, politicians, movies, appliances, or even high-tech consumer products like video games, phones, and apps. How do you promote the kinds of embedded electronic and industrial products and software that are never on sale at Frys or Home Depot?

The electronics industry does not stop in place, so let’s celebrate engineering excellence

January 31, 2014 9:50 am | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Blogs | Comments

The electronics industry does not stop in place. While changing times have affected industry awards and the nation is slowly shaking off its economic malaise, make no mistake that remarkable and innovative products and technology have been and continue to be unveiled all the time.

Single-cable solution offers cable lengths of up to 100 m

January 29, 2014 1:42 pm | Heidenhain Corp. | Product Releases | Comments

All motors normally need two separate cables: one for the motor speed encoder and the other for the motor power supply. With the Hybrid Motor Cable Project called HMC 6 from Heidenhain (Schaumburg, IL), the company has integrated the encoder lines into the power cable so now only one cable is needed between a synchronous motor and electrical cabinet.

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Google makes strides toward true artificial intelligence

January 29, 2014 11:32 am | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

We all ask: Is the whole business of artificial intelligence indubitably creepy or sensationally cool? Google recently endorsed the “sensationally cool” side when they purchased a London startup called DeepMind, a company that strives to produce the best in artificial intelligence.

Would Edison approve of this monumental shift to LEDs?

January 29, 2014 10:45 am | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Blogs | Comments

According to NJ.com, the 118-foot tall tower in Edison, New Jersey, where Thomas Edison revolutionized the incandescent light bulb, which is topped by a 14-foot glass replica light bulb, will no longer be lit by an array of incandescent bulbs. Instead, when renovations are completed, the replica bulb will be lit by LEDs.

Circular connector delivers 10 Gb ethernet performance in lightweight package

January 28, 2014 9:48 am | Product Releases | Comments

TE Connectivity announces its new CeeLok FAS-T nano circular connector, a nano-miniature, rugged I/O connector capable of meeting 10 gigabit Ethernet performance. The proven, noise-cancelling contact configuration minimizes crosstalk, making it ideal for a variety of markets and applications....

Apple responding to customer demands, or what on earth is a “Phablet"?

January 27, 2014 5:00 pm | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

Where iPhones are concerned, Apple doesn’t have a history of listening to consumers. They have also ignored advances made by their competitors, like Samsung. Despite updates, customers are unhappy with iPhones, themselves. But that’s about to change.

The Simpsons skewers Google Glass

January 27, 2014 4:05 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

You know you’ve hit the big time when the Simpsons — the longest-running sitcom in American history — crack wise at your expense. Their latest target: Google Glass, *ahem*, “Oogle Goggles”. And the satire — of Google Glass, augmented reality, and the ironic disconnection from reality that being connected 24-7 brings — is spot-on.

Coin cell holders rise only 2mm above the PCB surface

January 27, 2014 1:26 pm | Keystone Electronics Corp. | Product Releases | Comments

When circuit board height is a critical design parameter, Keystone offers a solution with an ultra-low profile holder for the #2032 Lithium Coin Cells. These new holders rise only 2mm above the PCB surface and are ideal for retaining cells securely under shock and vibration in high-density applications for PCB requirements.

Death of the author or digital rebirth of reading?

January 27, 2014 1:13 pm | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

How do we get kids of the digital age to read and write? As the proud holder of a degree in English, wide-eyed in my freshly graduated optimism, the thing that most irks me about this rapidly changing world is the fact that no one seems to want to read anymore.

Robotic gas pumps mean more pleasant winters

January 24, 2014 3:54 pm | by Allegra Sparta, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

For myself, and other residents of New Jersey, this isn’t really a big deal. I briefly flirted with the power of filling up my own tank (I actually thought it was kind of fun!) during my college years in upstate New York. However, New Yorkers are quick to remind us folks across the border of the luxury that is a full-service gas station. Well, here’s some good news for them and residents of the other 48 states that allow self-service....

Watch Steve Jobs introduce the very first Mac

January 24, 2014 2:08 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

I would like to personally wish a happy 30th birthday to the greatest computer of all time: the Mac. It was 30 years ago today (January 24th) that Steve Jobs revealed the first model. Though the design has changed a bit and the unit has slimmed down about 300 pounds, it’s important to remember the day the world changed.

Insulation displacement terminal blocks reduce connection time by 70%

January 24, 2014 1:20 pm | Automation Systems Interconnect (Asi) | Product Releases | Comments

Automation Systems Interconnect Inc. (ASI) is pleased to announce the release of DIN rail-mounted terminal blocks that use an extrusion technique to remove insulation on wires before connecting them to a control panel or manufacturing equipment. This is an excellent solution for a quick and safe connection of conductors....

This smartwatch predicts your death

January 24, 2014 1:15 pm | by Allegra Sparta, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

That doesn’t sound morbid at all. At least it saves me the trouble of driving all the way to a psychic, right? The weird thing is that a lot of people can say these things without an ounce of sarcasm. The Tikker death-countdown watch hits the market this April, and thousands of people have already pre-ordered. People spending money on unnecessary tech items doesn’t surprise me anymore, but I think Tikker crosses a line.

NASA: 2013 sustains global warming trend (since 1880)

January 22, 2014 4:53 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Because I love the smell of controversy in the morning... NASA has once again stoked the climate change debate, calling 2013 the seventh warmest year on record since 1880. According to a report from NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), 2013 tied 2009 and 2006 for that dubious honor....

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