Open Source Faces Challenges In 2020


I recently wrote a couple of posts about open-source EDA tools, OpenROAD: Open-Source EDA from RTL to GDSII and 2nd WOSET Workshop on Open-Source EDA. I have also written about open-source in general, as an approach to development and an approach to business in a post from over four years ago that I think stands up well: The Paradox of Open Source. The reason I called it a paradox is that ... » read more

Getting To Orbit And The Rocket Equation


The Apollo 12 mission recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. Launching on November 14, 1969 and returning on November 24, it put humans on the Moon for the second time. I wrote about Apollo 11 (mostly about its guidance computer) earlier in the year in my post The First Computer on the Moon. Today's post is about the rocket equation, and how challenging it is to get into orbit around th... » read more

Technological Dead Ends


Sometimes something comes along that looks like it is a portent of things to come, but then turns out to be a technological dead end. For example, in the 1990s, it seemed that you couldn't go to the mailbox or rent a video without getting an AOL CD offering a free trial. They were even in some cereal boxes. It was the era of the 56Kb dialup modem, and AOL's walled garden was king as everyone we... » read more