Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Please Vote

Sunday, June 24th, 2012

I wrote a few years ago about my wife the inventor and her child safety business.

Dolphin Tat

Well, she’s just entered the Mission Small Business contest to earn a small business grant from Chase and Living Social. To see what she’d do with the funds, you can take a look at her site. Please support her with a simple vote. Here’s how:

  1. Go to http://www.missionsmallbusiness.com
  2. Click the “Log In And Support” button
  3. Log in to your Facebook account (enter your email and password). When the window pops up you should see “Mission: Small Business”
  4. Click the “Log In With Facebook”
  5. Find her company: Business name: Aware Gear ; State: California ; City: Torrance .
  6. Be sure to click the VOTE button

If you can pass this on and add a mention to your Facebook page that would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

Harry

Cat Juggling

Saturday, June 25th, 2011

I have several projects starting up in the next few weeks, so the challenge of managing several concurrent projects has been on my mind. Managing multiple projects at once feels a little bit like juggling cats:

Even though it seems more difficult, I don’t think it’s inherently any different from managing a single project. Except, it’s absolutely crucial that each project is managed as efficiently as possible.

Being an engineer at heart, my tendency is to micro-manage things. I hate the idea of not having control and not knowing the status of every task all the time. Part of that is my nature, and part of it was learnt early in my management career.

When I first became a project manager, I was reticent to watch over the work of others. I figured, “I asked him to do this task, so it will get done the way I want it done.” The problem was that people did not always follow through and not always the way that I would have wanted them to. It was at this point that a colleague I trusted gave me this short but valuable insight. “Other people are not like me.”

Pretty obvious, but I think we all tend to assume that others will do things the way we would. Sometimes they do it differently and better, and that’s great. But other times, not so good. There were a few projects that blew up because I was not following up how tasks were getting done and so I learnt my lesson.

That’s when I got religion. Instead of assuming that tasks were getting done, I was all over people to make sure if and how they completed the work. Which made me much more effective as a project manager, but kind of a pain in the ass to work for.

I’m now somewhere in the middle, of course, but that does not mean I’ve just split the difference between absentee manager and micro manager. Instead, I have developed my own philosophy of project management that seems to work for me. Here are the 3 tenets:

Get it right early - The first few weeks of a project are the most critical, for obvious reasons. I try to make sure every person on the team knows his role, what are his reponsibilities, how they will work with others, how we communicate, etc. If I can get this part right, then things usually go smoothly from there. The first few weeks are also the time when the project goals, scope, budget go through the most change. Managing these changes and the associated risks, costs, schedule impacts, and expectations are critical to making sure the project is achievable. This is obviously a lot easier to say than do, so I like to engage everybody on the team to help us accomplish this.

Regular communication - This was one area I did not do well the first time around. I’d have sporadic 1-on-1 meetings or I’d only call people when there was an issues. Now, I make sure I touch bases with everyone on the team, and with the customer, at least once a week. It’s not always very long, but there’s that human relationship that needs to be developed that takes repeated and frequent contact, ideally face-to-face. With global teams this is not practical, so we talk on the phone, something that has been made easy and cheap by Skype. At least there is some human communication over the phone. Email and chat is used to keep in touch with quick things, but it tends to be less personal. I’ve found that if I stay in touch, people will bring me issues sooner and I can deal with them before they threaten to sink the project.

The customer, the customer, the customer - Especially within larger organizations that have been around awhile, there develops unspoken organizational and personal agendas and objectives that run counter to project success. Sure, it’s nice not to have to travel if you have a family (or to get to travel if you are young and single). It’s great to be able to work with the latest new tools or on the most challenging 28nm project or work with your best friend. In the end, however, as tough as it may sound, we’re all out of a job if we don’t take care of the customer. Whenever there is a tough decision to be made, it’s important to make project and customer success the #1 goal. That does not mean that everybody has to cancel his vacations and work 80 hour weeks, but it means that the impacts to the customer need to be considered and mitigated. Or else we’ll have a lot longer vacation than we bargained for.

There’s a lot more to project management than these 3 tenets, some of it nuts-and-bolts (how to develop a schedule, do risk management, etc), and some of it very difficult (how to deliver bad news to the customer). I like to think that these 3 tenets provide some guidelines that make the other stuff easier.

harry the ASIC guy

It Shrinks?

Sunday, January 2nd, 2011

As we enter a new year, it is comforting to know that we all are just a little bit dumber than we were last year.

According to an article in Discover Magazine, human brains have shrunk approximately 10% since Cro-Magnon man walked the earth 20,000 years ago. Although there is no certain relationship between brain size and intelligence, this still seems to be rather alarming and goes against what we all grew up believing. After all, don’t all those aliens have small bodies and big heads?

There are, of course, theories to explain this shrinkage.

One theory is that our brains have become more efficient and hence can do the same or better job with less mass. That’s the theory I’d like to believe.

Another thoery, described quite well in this clip from the movie Idiocracy, is that intelligence is no longer an asset for survival and procreation, and may even be a liability. That’s the theory I fear is true whenever I channel surf.

An interesting observation made by one anthropologist is that a smaller brain seems to be a way of naturally selecting against aggression and for tolerance and collaboration. Whereas early man had to be self-reliant and independent and aggreesive against his fellow man to survive, modern man benefits from the community which requires him to be tolerant and to collaborate.

By that reasoning, social media and social networking, which require a large amount of collaboration, are just the next stage in the evolution of the species.

So, as we start 2011, I’d like to propose a toast to us small-minded folks in social media. Smaller is better :)

harry the ASIC guy

Theodoric and Me

Saturday, December 18th, 2010

Several of you have inquired what’s been going on and why it’s been so long between blog posts. So, here’s the deal.

It’s been a rough few months.

I don’t feel like going into too much detail, but our family has been hit by a pretty difficult streak of illnesses. Thankfully, our immediate family is fine, but we lost my mother-in-law to an illness and both my parents have spent the better part of the last few months in the hospital or nursing care. And, not the least, we lost our beloved family dog Mookie as well.

Family priorities being what they are, my time and strength has been allocated elsewhere. Hopefully, this post will be the transition back into a more regular schedule going forward.

These several months dealing with the medical system has been eye opening, and not in a good way. Not that I thought that everything was great beforehand. You see, my father had been hit by a car several years ago and I got a good look at the “sausage factory” that is the US medical system at that time. Mistakes, inefficiencies, and just plain neglect are the status quo for most who need hospital or nursing care and are not able to strongly advocate for themselves or have someone do so on their behalf.

I could go on and on with stories, and maybe I will someday, but here are just a few of the moments that I recall the most:

  • My father’s medical records were faxed from the hospital to a nursing facility when he was transferred. Sounds good, except the original was on 2-sided paper and the fax was sent 1-sided, so they only had every other page.
  • While at a nursing home, my mother-in-law acquired a wound so bad that was so neglected that they did not even notice until she needed a blood transfusion.
  • A nurse insisted that my father had the correct care for 2 wounds even though I could plainly tell that she had them reversed. It took a whole day to get her to admit that she “might” have been wrong and check with the doctor.
  • My mother, who was unable to feed herself due to her condition, had her breakfast meal tray delivered and left sitting there. When I showed up just before lunch and pointed it out, they were going to feed her the breakfast that had been sitting there for 3 hours. Yummy, 3 hour old milk.
  • Numerous mistakes made while hand-copying medication lists when transferring between facilities. Turns out nurses don’t write any more neatly than doctors.
  • My father acquired a wound on his heel while he was left in bed with a broken leg. The wound then acquired an MRSA infection that took 6 months to heal.
  • My father did not receive any antibiotics for an infection that gave him a 104 degree fever because he could not recall if he had any allergies to medications.

I’ve found that, unless I am being a pain-in-the-ass to the staff, I’m not really doing enough to make sure my parents get the quality of care they deserve. That should not be the case.

According to some studies I’ve seen referenced, there are 225,000 deaths annually in the US due to medical errors, which is almost 10% of all deaths in the US.

To us engineers that design the most complex SoCs and systems, it seems unfathomable that our medical system is still mostly using pen and paper. How hard could it be to have a central location to store all medical information on each individual? So a doctor, or even a paramedic in the field, can access your entire medical history in seconds and know exactly what is your situation. So medications follow the individual and are correctly identified. So any doctor can access any report, to see when the last flu shot was given and whether there was an adverse reaction.

What is most frustrating is that this is a very solvable problem. We have the technology. But, as usual, politics gets in the way. Even though last year’s stimulus package put billions aside to create such a database, privacy “advocates” try to block progress.

I don’t want to use this post to get on my pulpit and preach. And I’m not trying to advocate for one political party or the other. So, I’m sorry if it comes off that way. But, come on people, can’t we just figure something out to bring us into the 21st century?

harry the ASIC guy

Harry’s SEO Homework

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

William ShakespeareAs I’ve mentioned before, I live in California, the state with the 46th best elementary school system in the country. Thank you California Lottery! So keep that in mind as you read the rest of this post.

One of the more challenging homework assignments my 3rd grade daughter receives regularly is to write a short story using a list of the week’s dozen or so spelling words. For instance, this is one that she received not so long ago:

Write about a time when you worked very hard to learn something. Tell what the experience was like. Use spelling words from the list.

And the list was:

coach    blow    float    hold    sew    though

sold    soap    row    own    both    most

She wrote about the time she learned to play the piano at summer camp. I won’t embarrass her by posting the story here, but suffice it to say that it was pretty forced. Don’t even think about asking how she got the word “soap” into the story!

So, this evening, whilst walking the dog, I was listening to this week’s episode of Leo Laporte’s This Week in Tech podcast (aka TWiT). On the podcast, someone mentioned a site called Wordstream. On this site, you can enter a keyword and it will tell you the most common search terms that includes that keyword. The idea is that, if you want to increase your SEO (search engine optimization), you should use the words that are most common in searches and the search engines will send people to you.

I immediately thought of my daughter’s homework assignment. The users of this site must feel like her, trying to weave the words generated by this site into their prose. I wondered how odd that would be. So, I decided to try it, just so I could get a taste of what my daughter went through. And also, because I thought it would be kinda fun.

Being “the ASIC guy”, what word other than “ASIC” could I have entered. After entering my keyword and my email address, I received an email with the 10,000 most common search terms that include “ASIC”. I decided to focus on the top 50 search terms, separating them out into individual words and listed them on a sheet of paper.

Now, without further ado, is Harry’s SEO Homework:

 __________

The alarm rang.

I lurched up out of bed, already in a panic, staring at the clock to see what time it was.

11:00am. Damn!

I took care of the basic biological necessities, then threw on my jeans, a T-shirt, and my brand new ASIC Gel-Kayano running chaussures. At least the company I worked for didn’t have a dress code and they didn’t care what shoes I wore. Designing ASICs and FPGAs is much easier when I’m comfortable.

I had been assigned to the verification team. My job was to search for bugs and to wrestle them down. Thankfully, I was able to use Verilog and System-Verilog for this project. Not like those VLSI design days, when I, and so many of my fellow engineers, had to wear a tie to impress the boss and had to use VHDL because they made us . A language by any other name is better than VHDL. Sure, VHDL is more structured. But, Verilog is a whole lot easier to use.

I’d been searching in some DCT4 code for one particular bug that had eluded me for 15 days. It should have been implemented in analog, but some Einstein decided digital logic was easier to design, so here I was.  It was me vs the bug. And the bug was winning!

Then it hit me. I was looking at the wrong register!

I felt a surge of power as I unlocked and modified my testbench. The combination of sleeplessness and Mountain Dew made me delirious. For a moment, I thought I was wearing a women’s dress and Onitsuka ASICs while playing volleyball in a prison cell. Gotta stop hanging out with those guys from the UK who watch Monty Python all the time.

I acted quickly, changing an “lt” to a “gt“, invoking the recompile flow on the new code, and kicking off the regression sim.

The simulation worked and I breathed a sigh of relief. My boss had threatened to bring in some hotshot design services company that he’d found on a website if I couldn’t find this bug. The nimbus that had been floating over my head for weeks was gone.

Now I could keep my job.

And now it was time for the layout guys to sweat!

__________

Phew! That was a lot harder than I thought. (Especially since those ASICS running shoes get a lot more hits apparently than the ASICs I usually write about). But now that I wrote and published that story, I expect I’ll be #1 on Google Search in the morning:-)

To be fair, I think there is certainly some value in understanding how people find this blog through various search terms. It helps me to understand what kind of information they are looking for and that helps me choose better topics to write about. But, taken to the extreme, if I write content for the search engines instead of all of you (my readers), then I’m in trouble. You may find me, but you won’t like what you find. And that would be much worse.

If anyone else wants to give this a try just for grins, just go to Wordstream and try it out. Just let me know where to find your “masterpiece”.

harry the ASIC guy

Honey, I Tattoo’ed The Kids

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

gid-it Glow In the Dark Skin Stickers I may be the engineer in the family, but my wife is the inventor.

Being an engineer is easy. You go to school to learn well established laws and methods. When you get a job, there are others who can mentor you and show you the ropes. If you need to know more, there are training classes to take. Someone else, usually marketing, decides what needs to be to be designed. All you have to do is follow the rules.

Being an inventor is hard. There is no school for inventing, nobody to teach you the ropes, and no classes to tell you how to do things. You come up with your own idea that has never been done before. You learn on the fly what you need to know from a variety of domains you know nothing about. You build it yourself. There is no such thing as first pass success. Experimentation and refinement are a constant process.

For those of you who know Joyce and have been privileged to receive one of her hand-made personalized holiday “greetings”, you know that she is one of the most creative and gifted people you could ever meet. I’ve had people tell me that they look forward to the holidays just to find out what she is going to send. Most Novembers, our garage looks like a scene out of Honey I Shrunk The Kids as Joyce invents a new holiday greeting. Each of these inventions takes countless hours of brainstorming, planning, experimenting, assembling, and tweaking to get it “just right”.

There was the mobile of our kids made with clear fishing line tied off. The fishing line, being so slick, would always untie until Joyce figured out to add a drop of glue to the end to keep it in place. Problem solved.

A few years ago Joyce made a lantern with pictures of our children on the outside. It took a lot of research and experimentation to make sure the cardboard comprising the lantern was sufficiently coated so as not to catch fire but still provide a cozy glow. Good to go.

And probably the most interesting of all, there was the snow globe which contained an acrylic encased photo of our daughter Kiara reaching for the stars. I remember Joyce’s frustration trying to pry the small Lucite blocks from their molds until she realized that sticking them in cold water would loosen the blocks from the molds due to the CTE mismatch between the materials. Then, these Lucite blocks were placed in baby food jars that had to have just the right mixture of water and propylene glycol to be viscous and not grow algae. Perfect.

About a year and a half ago, we were visiting Legoland in Carlsbad, CA. My kids (then 4 and 6), especially my son, have a gift for getting “sidetracked”. So, Joyce thought it would be a good idea for our kids to have our cell phone numbers conspicuously on them in case they got lost. That way, it would not depend on their memory of our cell numbers for us to be contacted by a helpful stranger if they wandered away. That’s when the idea for the “WhoTat” was born.

WhoTats

Joyce decided to start a business called Aware Gear that would provide safety products for young children. The first product was the WhoTat which is a temporary tattoo that is personalized with a phone number to call in case of emergency. Kids like to wear them and parents know that their kids don’t need to remember their phone numbers. Now, I’ll admit that I was personally dubious that this was needed. After all, how hard is it for a kid to remember a phone number? The problem is that most of us have several phone numbers (home, work, cell) and a scared lost child of any age can get confused and even mix the phone numbers together. That’s what my son did, mix the numbers together.

As with the other holiday greetings, this was an invention of its own. At first it seemed easy. Just buy these tattoo sheets that could be fed into a printer, design some neat tattoos, add the phone number, and print. But it wasn’t so easy. First there were moisture issues where the printing process wouldn’t work on humid days or the ink wouldn’t stick. Then the Tats were kind of sticky, so baby powder was used to remove the stickiness, but not too much so as to blur the image. It was probably 6 months before she got the process down to something that would repeatably produce a high quality product.

The second offering was a skin sticker where you could write in your own phone number or message on the fly. Again, material problems. Most recently, she is producing glow-in-the-dark skin stickers called gid-its. With Halloween coming up, and all the inherent dangers of visiting strangers while trick-or-treating, this should help kids stay safe. Once again, this has proven to be a real lesson in materials science, specifically how to get paint with glow-in-the-dark powder to adhere evenly to a non- porous acrylic surface. Who knew? Oh, and 2 days ago she told me about another invention idea and I already see the beginnings of prototypes around the house.

Since Halloween is coming around and child safety is a big concern for a lot of parents, I’d like to ask a favor … ummm … I mean offer you an opportunity. Actually, 3 opportunities.

First, as I mentioned, my wife is a creative genius and you have the opportunity to acquire some of there original work. Her products really do help to keep kids safe and are fun and you have the opportunity to get them for your kids. If you don’t have young kids, tell a friend who does. You can order them here. An if you use the checkout code ASICGUY10 you will get a 10% discount.

Second, you have an opportunity to support a good organization. In addition to the 10% discount mentioned above, Joyce will donate 10% directly to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The NCMEC acts as an information clearinghouse and resource for parents, children, law enforcement agencies, schools, and communities to assist in locating missing children and to raise public awareness about ways to prevent child abduction, child sexual abuse and child pornography. John Walsh, Noreen Gosch, and others advocated establishing the center as a result of frustration stemming from a lack of resources and coordination between law enforcement and other government agencies.

Lastly, if you have gotten some value out of reading this blog over time, then here is your chance to thank me. I’d really appreciate it.

harry the ASIC guy

What Makes DAC 2009 different from other DACs?

Sunday, July 12th, 2009

By Narendra (Nari) Shenoy, Technical Program Co-Chair, 46th DAC

Each year, around this time, the electronic design industry and academia meticulously prepare to showcase the latest research and technologies at the Design Automation Conference. For the casual attendee, after a few years the difference between the conferences of years past begins to dim. If you are one of them, allow me to dispel this notion and invite you to look at what is different this year.

For starters, we will be in the beautiful city of San Francisco from July 26-31. The DAC 2009 program, as in previous years, has been thoughtfully composed from using two approaches. The bottom up approach selects technical papers from a pool of submissions using a rigorous review process. This ensures that only the best technical submissions are accepted. For 2009, we see an increasing focus on research towards system level design, low power design and analysis, and physical design and manufacturability. This year, a special emphasis for the design community has been added to the program, with a User Track that runs throughout the conference. The new track, which focuses on the use of EDA tools, attracted 117 submissions reviewed by a committee made up of experienced tool users from the industry. The User Track features front end and back end sessions and a poster session that allows a perfect opportunity to interact with presenters and other DAC attendees. In addition to the traditional EDA professionals, we invite all practitioners in the design community – design tool users, hardware and software designers, application engineers, consultants, and flow/methodology developers, to come join us.

This first approach is complemented by a careful top-down selection of themes and topics in the form of panels, special sessions, keynote sessions, and management day events. The popular CEO panel returns to DAC this year as a keynote panel. The captains of the EDA industry, Aart deGeus (Synopsys), Lip-Bu Tan (Cadence) and Walden Rhines (Mentor) will explore what the future holds for EDA. The keynote on Tuesday by Fu-Chieh Hsu (TSMC), will discuss alignment of business and technology models to overcome design complexity. William Dally (Nvidia and Stanford) will present the challenges and opportunities that throughput computing provides to the EDA world in his keynote on Wednesday. Eight panels on relevant areas are spread across the conference. One panel explores whether the emphasis on Design for Manufacturing is a differentiator or a distraction. Other panels focus on a variety of themes such as confronting hardware-dependent software design, analog and mixed signal verification challenges, and various system prototyping approaches. The financial viability of Moore’s law is explored in a panel, while another panel explores the role of statistical analysis in several fields, including EDA. Lastly, we have a panel exploring the implications of recent changes in the EDA industry from an engineer’s perspective.

Special technical sessions will deal with a wide variety of themes such as preparing for design at 22nm, designing circuits in the face of uncertainty, verification of large systems on chip, bug-tracking in complex designs, novel computation models and multi-core computing. Leading researchers and industry experts will present their views on each of these topics.

Management day includes topics that tackle challenges and decision making in a complex technology and business environment. The current “green” trend is reflected in a slate of events during the afternoon of Thursday July 30th. We start with a special plenary that explores green technology and its impact on system design, public policy and our industry. A special panel investigates the system level power design challenge and finally a special session considers technologies for data centers.

Rather than considering it a hindrance to attendance, the prolonged economic malaise this year should provide a fundamental reason to participate at DAC. As a participant in the technical program, DAC offers an opportunity to share your research and win peer acclaim. As an exhibitor, it is an ideal environment to demonstrate your technology and advance your business agenda. As an attendee, you cannot afford to miss the event where “electronic design meets”. DAC provides an unparalleled chance to network and learn about advances in electronic design for everyone. Won’t you join us at the Moscone Center at the end of the month?

__________

This year’s DAC will be held July 26-31 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Register today at www.dac.com. Note also that there are 600 free DAC passes being offered courtesy of the DAC Fan Club (Atrenta, Denali, Springsoft) for those who have no other means to attend.

A lot of paper…

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

(The following is the text of an email I received this afternoon from a friend of mine in the Bay Area. I thought it was great and so I am sharing it with you, with his permission. If you would like to help him “unload his burden”, please let me know and I can put you in touch).

__________

Hi all,

Ok, so let me preface this by saying that I know I have a very deep and very hard to cope with, mental illness.  Somehow I feel that makes this more acceptable. As you may or may not know, we are moving.  I have decided that the boxes and boxes of IEEE and ACM journals will not be moving out of my storage and to our new home.  This is very hard for me.  It kills me to think about all the work and energy that went into fighting the universe’s entropy to come up with these things, and I CANNOT just take them to the dump (which I know is what I ought to do in a very real and cathartic sense.)

I know they are all available online and will forever be, at this point.  Years from now, I will not have the lone surviving issue of an incredibly important research paper otherwise to be lost to history.  I know that.  When I was younger, I had visions of one day having them all bound into annual editions and putting them in my library with oak or mahogany lined walls, overstuffed burgundy furniture, and a pool table with red felt in the middle of the room.  It’s time to put away my childish things and stop carrying this load.

As I said, it is very difficult for me.  What I would most like is to find a good home for them where they will be shelved, appreciated, and used.  The problem is that I think all the engineering libraries in the bay area all have as many (or even more) than they would like.  If any of you want to fill out a company library, I would be happy to give them to you.  I have about 25 years worth… the prized parts of the collection include IEEE Computer, IEEE Transactions on Computers, and IEEE Transactions on Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence… amongst lots of others. It will be hard to dump the Computer issues back to 1985… that seemed to be a glorious time in computer architecture and design.  A bygone era.  

I hate reading these things online.  My first inclination when I see an article I want to read online is to print it.  I’d much rather have it on a shelf and look it up that way saving myself the time to print, but I know it’s crazy, and I can no longer afford to keep hauling around this paper.

I believe I am going to fail in finding a home for these things.  This is my last ditch effort to find someone to take them.  I suppose the next best thing to the dump is taking them to an actual paper recycling plant.  I suppose that is at least one step more green than doing the landfill thing, which I truly find distasteful.

I am open to any and all suggestions.  Sorry for this long e-mail.  I hope it was at least a little entertaining looking into another person’s deep dementia.  I know I have issues.  Over twenty-five years’ worth…

-al

Mentor Graphics Displaced Worker Program

Thursday, February 26th, 2009

I’m still up at the Design Verification Conference (DVCon) and have not had a chance to summarize last evening’s Software-As-A-Service and Cloud Computing EDA Roundtable. I will do that over the weekend and have a complete rundown next week, including slides.

In the meantime, I wanted to pass on some information that was announced a week or so ago and which I became aware of just this week. Mentor Graphics has initiated a Displaced Worker Program to provide free training to customers who have lost thier jobs in the last 6 months. Back last Decemeber I had issued a challenge to the EDA vendors to do just this. I don’t know if this challenge had any affect; hopefully they did this because they thought it was the right thing to do.

So far Mentor is the only company that has done this, to my knowledge. I’ve personally had discussions with one other of the “Big 3″, so hopefully they will follow suit. Maybe Mentor’s offer will help prompt them.

What do you think? Should they do this?

harry the ASIC guy

The Dream Lives On

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

Although I’ve observed the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. every year since I was a child, I must acknowledge, for obvious reasons, that this year was special. The confluence of this holiday with the inauguration of the first African American President seems like the culmination of the dream that Dr. King spoke of in 1963. Even though I am not African American, I can’t help but feel a sense of pride that this nation was able to finally make good on the check that the founding fathers wrote over 2 centuries ago when they said that “all men are created equal”.

I’m not naive enough to believe that we now have complete equality and that there are no racial, cultural, or religious biases remaining in the US. I know several people that harbor prejudices towards “others”. Indeed, many Americans have simply found new groups towards which to have these biases. And if history teaches us anything, it’s that history repeats itself. That is why I feel it is so important that we teach our children about Slavery, the Holocaust and other ugly chapters in American and World History .. so (hopefully) it does not occur again.

Still, I realized the other day how fortunate I am to work in a truly global engineering community that is so diverse and where people are, for the most part, judged not by the color of their skin, but by their abilities. I won’t lie and say that I am not aware of the race or nationality or cultural background of the people I work with. Of course I am. But it just isn’t that important to me. And hopefully my race is not that important to them.

If you have the time, watch the video of Dr. King’s I Have A Dream speech and share it with someone who needs to hear it. Or if you have a little more time, read Dr. King’s Letter From A Birmingham Jail (thanks to John Ford for pointing this out in a tweet). In our current age of the sound bite, we rarely hear or read anything so eloquent or poetic.  It’s worth your time.

harry the ASIC guy