Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2016

The 7 Habits Applied to Electronics: Being Proactive

"According to Steven Covey, writer of the bestseller “The seven habits of highly effective people” (1989), a good leader thinks in terms of win-win situations. This makes sense. There are indeed leaders whom we value because they are always able to create such situations.

But turn this around. A good leader has the courage to think in terms of win-lose situations, the courage to face the embarrassment of confronting the losers. You could equally argue that it is actually this that really makes good leadership – rather than the naive belief in win-win situations. To be fair, there is nothing really wrong with Stephen Covey, but many leadership gurus are like quack doctors: what they say is true, but also untrue."

-from MOOC Delftx - Leadership for Engineers (EdX)

It all began (as some of my stories do) during a college lecture in basic electronics. Taking a brief hiatus after a tedious discussion, our professor made an oblique pitch about a book he read by Stephen Covey, e…

Bench Presses and Cross Fits with SMUs, DMMS, and CRT Oscilloscopes

Okay, I have a confession. This article isn’t exactly concentrated on the physical exercise of doing bench presses and cross fits, but figuratively is about mental exercises of similar magnitude. So if you were lead here by googling the words “bench press” and “cross fit”, then this isn’t the reading material for you. Then again, please do read it anyway since you’ve gotten through the effort of opening it on your browser. Please…

“Why that choice of words for the title?” you may ask. Well, anyone who has sat in front of an electronics test bench will attest that, aside from the physical effort of bringing your instruments there, an auxiliary mental analysis is required for proper measurement. For example, you are checking the output of an IC you recently purchased. The datasheet claimed -60 dB PSRR, but when you sweep the input with a sine wave amplitude from ground potential to the maximum operating voltage, you observe significant noise. With a wrinkled forehead and disgruntled ex…