Author Topic: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week  (Read 7457 times)

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Offline ChrisGammell

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Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« on: January 09, 2014, 04:05:20 pm »
Dave Taylor worked on the early Fluke DMMs and we think that's pretty cool. We're going to ask him about it on the show. Please leave questions you have for him here or on our subreddit: http://www.reddit.com/r/TheAmpHour/comments/1uswuh/this_week_on_the_show_dave_taylor_designer_of_the/
 

Offline retiredcaps

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2014, 11:37:13 pm »
I will happily monopolize the Q&A section if no one else has questions.   ;)

One other person I talked to said he would be happy just to hear drtaylor talk about his days/projects at Fluke.

Growing up questions

- What sparked your interest in electronics?
- What was the first multimeter you ever used?

Fluke Company questions

- How did you get the job at Fluke?
- What was the interview process like?  Did John Fluke interview you at all?
- What was the culture and employees like at Fluke when John Fluke was around?
- What was the new Everett campus like ($42 Million, 500,000 square feet in 1981)?  Is it anything like the typical Silicon Valley campus of today?
- What were some of John Fluke's values that he instilled into employees?
- Did John Fluke ever talk about the irony of competing against his former room mates (HP) in the T&M field?
- What was the biggest blunder/oops Fluke Corporation made while you were there and how did they deal with it?
- Did the idea of "accidentally" dropping Fluke meters or throwing them out windows in front of prospective customers ever fail as a sales pitch?  :-DD

8000 related questions

- Can you discuss some of the biggest challenges in producing the 8020A and 8060A?
- What did you learn from the 8020A team and how did that help you later with the 8060A?
- Who else in the world, at the time of the 8020A, was making handheld multimeters that were good competitors?  For example, was Yokogawa (resold as HP) or Hioki serious contenders or was the competition mainly American like Beckman and Keithley?
- Was the manufacturing process hand made/soldered or automated back then?
- Who were some of the key team members and what did they contribute?
- What technologies were "firsts/leading edge" in the 8000 series at that time?
- How did you select components back when there was no easily accessible datasheets like there is today on the Internet?
- How many 8060A prototypes were built before the final design was approved/manufactured?
- What compromises were made on the 8060A, if any, were made with respect to time, budget and management factors?
- Did you ever do a post-mortem on the dead 8060As that came back for repair to see why they failed?  If yes, what was the biggest problem?
- What is the best customer story that you heard about using the 8060A to solve a problem?

Design questions

- In the repair department, what did you learn to make products better from a design point of view?  For example, did you design/add test points so that they were more easily accessible?
- When the 8020A was designed, what was the expected life expectancy of the meter?
- When the 8060A was designed, what was the expected life expectancy of the meter?  Other than the electrolytic caps going bad after 25+ years, did you ever expect the 8060A to last this long?
- How much thought went into the ease of use and user interface into your designs?

70 series related questions

- Was the 70 series a catch up product to some of the offerings from Beckman (rotary switch, 1500 hour battery life, rubber holster)?
- Beckman made an ad stating each multimeter was burned in for at least 100 hours and then calibrated.  Did Fluke have the same process for the 70 series?
- As an "outsider" and working at Wavetek, were you surprised at the success of the 70 series?  Or did the early stages of design, teamwork, look at the competition, etc give indication that it would be a home run?

DMM related questions

- What is your favourite non Fluke branded handheld multimeter?
- How do you feel about the 7106 (Fluke/Intersil dispute) being ubiquitous in almost every low cost multimeter today?

PS. I will edit this thread/reorganize for a better flow before the amphour show as I think of more questions.  ;D
« Last Edit: January 12, 2014, 12:36:03 am by retiredcaps »
 

Offline ChrisGammell

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2014, 11:57:49 pm »
Holy moly, great questions!
 

Offline retiredcaps

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2014, 12:14:39 am »
Hi Chris,

As I mentioned, I will edit/add/clarify/reorganize the questions for a better flow in post #2. I will do it well in advance of Monday so you, Dave and Dave can be prepared.

I'm looking forward to it.  Keep up the great work in 2014.
 

Offline peter.mitchell

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2014, 09:39:00 am »
What do you see in store for the future of handheld DMMs, and do you like this direction?
What do you think of the current selection of low price DMMs?
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2014, 12:13:08 pm »
What does he think about the concept of an OSHW multimeter?
 

Offline peter.mitchell

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2014, 12:58:52 pm »
What does he think about the concept of an OSHW multimeter?
I was considering asking this, but i feel i already know what he will say...
 

Offline JoannaK

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2014, 09:33:12 am »
Listening now.. Good stuff..
 

jucole

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2014, 12:42:34 pm »
Very enjoyable!
 

Offline dr.diesel

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2014, 03:56:23 pm »
Was a great show!

I also agree an open hardware/software, low voltage, multi channel DMM/data logger would not only be useful but a hit.

Offline ModemHead

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2014, 05:12:10 pm »
Great show!  Enjoyed every minute.
 

Offline retiredcaps

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2014, 07:48:23 am »
Thanks to Dave Taylor for sharing his time with Fluke and all the stories.  :-+   :-DMM

Thanks to Chris and Dave Jones for putting it all together.  :-+

I thoroughly enjoyed it and will be listening to it multiple times to understand the more technical aspects of it.
 

Offline Orpheus

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2014, 10:50:54 pm »
This reminded me of one of my first childhood hacks, a mid-70 Sharp LCD calculator as he described -- very exotic in the LED era. My parents got it on clearance because it turned out to use RPN entry! I guess they were copying HP scientific calculators which were famous for using RPN and having an ENTER key instead of "=". (I was later forced to learn RPN in Eng school, probably near the last class to do so, and a few times in various projects and languages, but I'm not 'fluent' in it to this day)

That calculator used a single front polarizer at 45 degrees and a rear reflector. I cut a slot in the side, so I could slide the filter out, and flip it over for white on black on-the-fly. I recall a couple of girls being very impressed with  my "invention", though that seems inconceivable now. I must've been a cuter kid than I realized.
 

Offline RadiationKing

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2014, 03:57:02 am »
Hi all,

This is my first ever post on this forum! I enjoy both The Amp Hour and the EEVblog. After hearing the show with Drtaylor, I decided to check out the forum to ask my question for Drtaylor:

During the show, you (Drtaylor) mentioned that ~4 years ago, MSI/Rice Lake decided to make their products wireless. Looking at this product as an example: http://www.ricelake.com/products/crane-scales/msi-crane-scales/msi-6260cs-trans-weigh-cellscale-rf the website says that the wireless technology used is 2.4GHz frequency-hopping spread spectrum (approx 1000 ft. range). Based on what I can see on the product literature, however the body seems to be completely made of metal, with no obvious antenna present.

http://www.ricelake.com/docs/prodinfo/Images/hi-res/MSI_6260/FS_MSI_6260C.jpg

Now for the question from the RF nerd:

Can you share where and how the antenna (s) is tucked away? Are you using a resonant slot in the metal enclosure? Is part of the actually enclosure plastic? Do you see a lot of  fading in typical installations as the scale spins and moves? Do you use more than one antenna (diversity) to mitigate fading?

It must be very challenging to design products for such an abusive environment! Very cool stuff.
"In the new era, thought itself will be transmitted by radio."
- Guglielmo Marconi
 

Offline The_Penguin

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2014, 04:27:27 pm »
Dave Taylor worked on the early Fluke DMMs and we think that's pretty cool. We're going to ask him about it on the show. Please leave questions you have for him here or on our subreddit:

That was great!
Thanks to Dave T, Dave, and Chris for another great podcast!
 

Offline drtaylor

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #15 on: January 18, 2014, 06:32:29 am »
Hi all,

This is my first ever post on this forum! I enjoy both The Amp Hour and the EEVblog. After hearing the show with Drtaylor, I decided to check out the forum to ask my question for Drtaylor:

During the show, you (Drtaylor) mentioned that ~4 years ago, MSI/Rice Lake decided to make their products wireless. Looking at this product as an example: http://www.ricelake.com/products/crane-scales/msi-crane-scales/msi-6260cs-trans-weigh-cellscale-rf the website says that the wireless technology used is 2.4GHz frequency-hopping spread spectrum (approx 1000 ft. range). Based on what I can see on the product literature, however the body seems to be completely made of metal, with no obvious antenna present.

Now for the question from the RF nerd:

Can you share where and how the antenna (s) is tucked away? Are you using a resonant slot in the metal enclosure? Is part of the actually enclosure plastic? Do you see a lot of  fading in typical installations as the scale spins and moves? Do you use more than one antenna (diversity) to mitigate fading?

It must be very challenging to design products for such an abusive environment! Very cool stuff.

Glad you enjoyed the podcast. On the 4260 and 6260' the antenna is in a tuned pocket underneath a label. The antenna itself is a small rectangular patch planar antenna. It has strong lobes forward and backward, with the large aluminum casting acting as a ground plane. The radiation pattern is weakest to the sides, but still adequate for our purposes. It exhibits excellent performance without exposing any surface that can be damaged. The patch antenna is composed of low loss thick PCB material with a carefully tuned antenna pattern out of copper. It works quite well even with the scale turning. No diversity switching. We tried a similar thing at 900MHz but an effective patch was too big. The 2.4GHz patch has an average gain of 5dBi. Due to its directional lobes less energy is wasted below and above the scale.  It has given our crane scales an edge because most of our competitors just hang a dipole antenna which is easily broken.
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #16 on: January 18, 2014, 07:12:28 am »
I guess the antenna is the lower mass value label in the image. About the right shape and has the indented section where the edge of the slot is.
 

Offline LDSisHere

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Re: Drtaylor (EEVblog forum member) On The Show This Week
« Reply #17 on: January 25, 2014, 09:40:45 pm »
I want to say thanks to Dr. Taylor for going to the effort of sharing his stories and experiences both on the radio show and this forum.  I also want to say thanks to Chris and Dave for getting him on the show.
 


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