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#3- HP, IEEE, and Human Interface

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ChrisGammell:
Well, number 3 is in the bag. We covered some broad topics and upon re-listening we didn't meander as much as I initially thought we did. We tried to cover some topics from the "Questions" thread, so yes, it works and please keep posting there. There's also a "Suggestions" page at http://theamphour.com/suggestions. We'd love any feedback about the show! Thanks!

http://www.theamphour.com/2010/08/10/3-hp-ieee-and-human-interface/

mikeselectricstuff:
Talking about soldering expensive FPGAs - how nervous would you be assmebling this little puppy.
1200 pins, $14,800 each..! Although at .2 cents per gate it still works out way cheaper than discrete logic!

Like you, I do wonder who uses stuff like this, but I suppose there will always be a leading edge where the goal is ultimate performance at any cost....
Here's another example
 

ChrisGammell:
I always figure it's like Vegas...I think sitting down at a table with 1000 minimum bets is crazy. But if I was sitting there, you know it's not that big of a deal to me. Perspective and all that.

saturation:
Finally had a chance to listen to this in its entirety.  Some comments.

On the 'HP Way', it was marvelous while it lasted.  HP of old and "management by walking around" may work for small businesses, but its unlikely H or P could see everyone if you're a multinational with tens of thousands of employees.  

Senior officers are full time jobs, 24/7, one really cannot afford to be unreachable during a vacation or asleep as a crisis erupts, as was the case of BP spill or Toyota with the acceleration issue, or a production line stalling because of a parts failure, such delays translate in to millions lost per minute; also your Asian branches are awake and doing business while the West sleeps and vice versa.  You have a portfolio of lawsuits to decide what to do, projects with various levels of success, or failure.  Work doesn't end at 5pm or so. While I think the issue of salaries is at face value unfair, the ex-CEO of HP was incharge of $100B in revenue, for a salary of $34M.  That's about 340 ppm.  If you were CEO of a company that made $100M annually, your equivalent salary would be $34,000.  Things are a lot less clear at the top than simply improving the print quality of a toner, so there is little guidance, and you can be fired any time, so most CEO make a golden parachute because before they get hired, they know they can be fired, and if they are fired because they didn't do well as a CEO, chances are they aren't going to be hired at this level ever again by another company.

Joining the IEEE isn't just to network, you can do that anywhere today.  Where it remains unique besides a standards body, is the literature database for information that is as bias free as possible.  Its also one of the few places competing companies can meet or write about technical issues without worrying about their ideas being stolen.

Getting a Professional Engineer license or an equivalent has practical ramifications, depending on the niche you're in.  In many instances, PE are required for heading federal, state, or city projects in the USA.

ChrisGammell:
You're right about the HP Way. Even Bill and Dave begin to lament their success as the years moved on and their company got too big to hand out bonus checks at Christmas personally. It's just a reality of growing beyond a certain size.

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