The Right Kind Of Fun

What is your opinion really worth?


A couple of weeks ago I went to see “Together Again At Last…For The Very First Time” by John Cleese and Eric Idle at the Center for the Performing Arts in San Jose. I hope all of you recognize both gentlemen as two members of Monty Python.

As you can imagine, it was quite an exciting night. With the audience being Monty Python fanatics, every video clip or skit was received with a lot of laughter and applause. Their humor just doesn’t grow old and to this day still feels very innovative, which is amazing given the fact that the first Flying Circus episode aired in 1969.

The contrast couldn’t be bigger with a couple of stand-up comedians that I saw with a friend at a local comedy bar. They really weren’t that funny, but they thought they were. And they actually started “blaming” the audience for not laughing at their jokes.

Now if there is something I’ve learned as a marketing professional, it is to never assume that the issue lies with the customer. As they teach at Pragmatic Marketing classes: “Your opinion, although interesting, is irrelevant.” The goal is not to come up with a product that you want, but to design a product that the customer needs.

That is why it is always great to hear a user talk about their success with one of your products. I had the pleasure to see Eamonn Quigley, engineering manager for hardware acceleration at ARM, present about his successes deploying physical prototypes inside ARM. He co-presented at ARM TechCon with my colleague Achim Nohl from Synopsys: FPGA-based Prototyping Accelerates Software Driven Verification of ARM IP. Eamonn was visibly excited about the value his team has achieved deploying prototyping to enable earlier testing and thus shift left the product development cycle.

User successes like these make me feel good about promoting the value of physical prototyping to accelerate software development and verification schedules and validate your design.

To finish this blog with a (modified) quote from the A-team: If you have a schedule problem … if no other methodology gives you the right performance to run your software heavy development tasks … and if you can find the right one for you … maybe you can adopt … physical prototyping.