Global electronics news brief, week ending 4 March 2011

This week, Apple announced its iPad 2, which quickly saturated the electronics news landscape. But don’t let that flood out some great quality reading found this week, and it seems power efficiency is the common theme (in some of the articles, at least).

This week, Apple announced its iPad 2, which quickly saturated the electronics news landscape. However, don’t let that flood out some great quality reading found this week, and it seems power efficiency is the common theme (in some of the articles, at least).

Firstly, a New York Times article on HP researchers melding processing and memory in a bid to remove bottlenecks and usher in the grand new age of nanoelectronics. Will this sort of development allow us to leapfrog over Moore’s Law? Read more

IEEE Spectrum has yet another quality piece, this time on chip packaging. It provides a nice history of the packaged chip, walking us through developments like system-in-a-package, package-on-package, and package-in-package, then transitioning to the latest innovations. Read more

PCWorld continues on that power efficiency theme which looks at how process shrinking is approaching its limits. The article is mostly based off a panel which took place during the Solid-State Circuits Conference, with the panellists proposing different approaches. I took particular favour to the zen-like pronouncement near the end of the article: “The most power effective transistor is the transistor which is not there.” Try using that at your next dinner conversation. Read more

The Harvard Gazette then takes on the low power issue with an article exploring the work of Gu-Yeon Wei, who is working on VLSI circuits, specifically power-supply regulation for microprocessors. The article itself takes a bit of a scenic route to get to the good stuff, but you just know any piece containing the concept of robotic bees must be good. Read more

SemiWiki has some pretty good pieces, and this one by Daniel Nenni looks at the power constraints of semiconductor technology. And it seems new transistor designs like FinFET is the future. Read more