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Do you support plans for National tests of PCB layout program use-ability?

Discussion in 'Circuit Simulation & PCB Design' started by Flyback, Jan 28, 2016.

  1. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Yes but sometimes its easier to just let the tool go :D
     
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  2. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    OK Ghostman, what about a challenge, ..how much money would you want, to write a document and youtube video which allows any person with basic knowledge of electronics components and basic knowledge of the actual structure of a PCB, to be able to complete the task of the first post#1 (in Altium). By this I mean for people who have never touched any PCB layout package before. How much would you want for that?....your notes and video must allow the completion of the task without them needing to refer to anything else other than your documents/video.
    (ok granted they would have to look at the datasheet for the resistor and cap)
    Also, if you think such documentation cannot possibly be written by anyone, then please state that.
    The money could be yours.
    (It is granted that the people who you will be writing these notes for will know how to use a windows based computer.)
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2016
  3. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    There are millions of tutorials for Altium??? Thats was my point, I learnt quickly by following a few vids. Eagle has the worlds worst library thing, Altium is alot easier to use in that respect. Honestly all you have to do is sit still headphones on and follow the tutorials. You can have that info FOC!!
    For £0.01 I will provide links.
     
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  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. DerStrom8

    DerStrom8 Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    You're still missing the point. If you want a job in engineering, then it is your responsibility to learn how to use the tools. It is not the responsibility of the employer to choose software that's easy for you to use.

    Sorry to be so blunt, but I can see why you were let go. Thinking everyone has to cater to you and your wishes/experience level (or lack of experience).

    Your complaining about the difficulty of software is very childish. If you ever want to succeed in life, I suggest you stop complaining here and start learning what you need to know in order to find a successful job.
     
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  6. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    OK please allow me to explain, I am part of a workgroup who is tasked to investigate this on behalf of a wealthy client. This wealthy client was first approached by a well-known politician.
    This all started some 5 years ago, when a company in Yorkshire, UK wanted to get somebody to do a 10W LED driver PCB in their high-end PCB package. Their own PCB guy was busy and couldn’t do it in the short timeframe.
    So an external PCB package guy was called in to do it. He charged £3700 for two days work. They couldn’t find anybody else available to do it. This ended up getting mentioned to the local politician, who told the other politician.
    They investigated and found that a great many UK companies were paying high-end PCB package contractors wages of typically in the region of £40/hr…and in vast numbers of cases these are long term contracts.
    It was deemed that the shortage of staff that was leading to these exorbitant rates was due to the fact that the high-end PCB packages , for various reasons, are made harder than they need to be…and here we are now.
    (Incidentally, I actually sat with the CAD guy who did the 10W LED driver board, because I had to tell him how to lay out the switch mode high di/dt current loops. I sat with him for five hours, and after that we had the most of the board placed and routing mostly done. The CAD guy then spent the next day by himself tidying it up and gerbering it. The CAD guy hadn’t made the library parts, -he used library parts made by myself…apart from the QFN type FET, for which he made the footprint. –Incidentally, he did the QFN type footprint wrong, and I ended up getting a call from the PCB manufacturer saying “you don’t really mean that QFN footprint to be like that do you?”)
     
  7. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    You think £40 an hour is alot for a engineer? You should see what a scientist charges! £40 is just over the UK average (taken as a whole) and it around £47K after tax (maybe a bit more). Not much if you ask me, the store manager of a Tesco supermarket shop gets £110k a year for selling fruit and veg.
    Take Jims old industry (oil rigs), I doubt you would get them out of bed for £40 an hour
     
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  8. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    Im afraid the politicians don't think theyre worth it....they think if the pcb cad operator is also the circuit designer , then that's a 40 per hour job then.
     
  9. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    politicians couldnt care less what the cad guy is paid, pay attention to what they say about bankers. Its in the politicians own interest to let the market decide who is paid what, you see these things as a massive problem to humanity and the simple fact is only one person cares about it.
    Of course that one person is correct and the rest of humanity is wrong, must drive you crazy being the one and only person on the planet that sees these major hurdles we must cross.
     
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  10. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    There are many instances of the uk gov't moving in to prevent eg anti-competitive practices etc.....The fact is they get more tax the more productive the electronics industries are.....who knows, we might even get some more bigger ones, instead of like now where we just have the Dyson Company, brilliant though it is, its only one place.
    As discussed in post#45, £3700 for 2 days work in the PCB cad program, when the guy didn't even design the circuit, and didn't know how to lay out the high di/dt current loops is way out of order.
    Don't get me wrong, there will be a lot of people that want to perpetuate the shortage of high-end PCB cad guys, so they can carry on milking the lucre themselves.
     
  11. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    :confused:
     
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  12. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    What you fail to grasp is NO ONE is limiting the amount of high end PCB guys.

    Look at it from a wider perspective than that your imposing by viewing from YOUR own knowledge/perspective. CAD companies have training courses, they do not restrict who goes on them, they may limit numbers per class but that is purely so they can deliver an effective course.

    There is no limit to what you can learn on your own, ALL cad companies place no end of video AND other training material all over the web, it would not be in there interest to have restricted knowledge. Look at it this way...................

    You sell CAD software, what kind of numpty company then makes sure it only has 5 people in the world that can use it? they wont as many people as they can get to use it, they spend vast sums of money to grab market share.
    The problem is people cant be bothered to learn by teaching themselves, they expect to turn upto a lecture etc and have the knowledge magically inserted via there ears. The fact is just about everything boils down to experience, the more you do something the better you get at it.

    When my dad took people on it didnt mater if they could use X equipment, if they were made of the right stuff then he paid to have them trained or trained them himself. Your work issues etc are not because if a conspiracy or even hard CAD packages, your problem is you want the world to work your way and constantly look for solutions to make that happen.
    Identify your weak points (ok for the sake of brevity just pick a few) and work on them, its easier to change oneself than the entire world ;). Now go get me a nice cup of tea and sweep the floor ;)
     
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  13. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Why am I even discussing this? I bet everyone else is laughing at me bruising my head on the wall
     
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  14. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    I stuggled with Altium 5 years ago.
    At that time there certainly weren’t loads of “getting started” type user videos for it.
    You say there is now, but can you prove this?
    And 5 years ago there certainly wasn’t a free version of Altium, I know because I tried to find one so I could practice for work when at home, but I found nothing.
    Maybe Altium has grabbed the nettle here, I don’t know, 5 years ago it certainly was the case that no high-end package had much in the way of effective starter guides.
    What I point to is the £3700 fees and the multitude of huge wages and companies suffering high-end pcb cad staff shortages. I can understand a successful circuit designer taking the big wage. –But there’s something amiss if the pure PCB CAD guys are shovelling up huge wages like £3700 for two days.
     
  15. DerStrom8

    DerStrom8 Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Don't you know how to read? The TechDocs have ALWAYS been very descriptive and in-depth. You just have to have the ability to read them.

    About 5 years ago is when I first started looking at Altium (for the first time). There was free a 30-day trial even then, which gives you more than enough time to learn how the tool works.
     
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  16. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    The thing is that the High-end PCB package Apps guys are left to sell the package.
    These Apps guys make money by moonlighting as PCB layout engineers, so its not in their interest to train up loads of people to competently use their package.
    Also, theses Apps guys certainly stamp out any effective “getting started” guides for their package, because if such existed , then no-one would need to pay Apps guys to come and give them “training sessions”.
     
  17. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Training exists for companies and those that cant be @~@~: Bothered to use you tube, try up skilling then maybe you too can earn £3,700 for two days work! I hate to tell you this but a top Bio Chemist charges this sort of fee. Even high end ladies who supply 'temporary company' are pretty expensive (so I am told), and they dont pay tax OR the hotel cost!!
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2016
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  18. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    This post directly discusses why PCB layout packages need to stop being more complex than they need to be:

    I was working as a contractor in an electronics company once and was served a cup of coffee (on a Friday afternoon) by a mechanical engineer which severely burned my throat (so much so that I couldn’t sleep the entire weekend and went back to work on Monday am with just about 2 hours of sleep over the entire weekend)
    I was the only Electronics engineer working in this company.
    The situation was that I had to design a 150W Buck LED driver. That was no problem and I did that bit of the job fast. However, on the same PCB as the LED driver , there was a lot of control circuitry that had to be squeezed on to a tiny area of the PCB. This control circuitry was taking me ages to layout due to the small area of the PCB that it had to be squeezed on to. During this time, the general staff of the company (office staff, production staff, mechanical engineers etc etc) decided that I was obviously not up to the job (due to the amount of time it was taking me to finish the PCB).

    ..There was much discontent and I could hear them murmuring about me, but I just kept working. I heard the mechanical engineer telling the Engineering Director to get another engineer in to replace me due to the time the PCB was taking me. Then a mechanical engineer offered me a coffee which I accepted. I took one small sip and swallowed and could then feel it burning my throat , and gullet, all the way down to my stomach. As discussed, the stomach burn seemed to heal, but the back-of-throat burn kept stinging throughout the entire weekend and meant I barely slept for the whole weekend.
    Someone said that the coffee must have just “accidentally” had some dishwasher chemical in it before he poured the coffee in, but I just do not believe that that much dishwasher chemical could have been left in a coffee cup taken from a dishwasher.

    Anyway, this is one reason PCB layout packages need to stop being made harder than they need to be…other engineers agree with me. Do you agree?
     
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  19. Little Ghostman

    Little Ghostman Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    FFS now we get the truth, sorry but to be blunt if your not bright enough to pick up a cup and realize its too hot to drink, you have no chance using a pen and paper to draw a square let alone use pcb layout software! Anyway why is someone with a drama degree doing EE?
     
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  20. Flyback

    Flyback Well-Known Member

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    It wasnt heat, that coffee had been sitting on my desk for over 15 minutes before i took that sip. Ive no idea what was put in it.
     
  21. DerStrom8

    DerStrom8 Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Nope, I think you're being downright ridiculous. What you just described has little to do with PCB packages, though I can see how you're trying to make the link. The main problem seems to be a hostile work environment, which you generally want to stay as far away from as possible. Proper engineers will understand that it takes time to design PCBs to the specifications provided, especially if it's a high-density board. Mechanical Engineers know nothing about this, so if they have enough say to convince your boss to let you go, then you clearly don't work with proper engineers or a reasonable boss. Why would you want to stay in such an environment anyway?

    As for the complex PCB packages, the one you've discussed (Altium) is only difficult to learn. Once you're very familiar with it (after spending a lot of time on your own, learning its features and shortcuts) designing a PCB will go much faster than if you did it in Eagle. You clearly haven't spent enough time (say, with the trial version) to familiarize yourself with it. You need to open your mind and conform to the industry standards if you want to succeed. Altium is very commonly used in professional PCB design, so it's worth it. Instead of going into it closed-minded (thinking "Eagle is so much better than Altium"), try to find Altium's strengths, and work with them. Altium has many tools that will expedite the design process and you'll be able to complete a board in much less time than it would take in Eagle. Once again, I'm speaking from experience here.
     
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