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Round-up 2013: Best of semiconductors, electronics and solar

December 31, 2013 Comments off

Virtex UltraScale device.

Virtex UltraScale device.

Friends, here’s a review of 2013! There have been the usual hits and misses, globally, while in India, the electronics and semiconductor industries really need to do a lot more! Enjoy, and here’s wishing everyone a Very Happy and Prosperous 2014! Be safe and stay safe!!

DEC. 2013
What does it take to create Silicon Valley!

How’s global semicon industry performing in sub-20nm era?

Xilinx announces 20nm All Programmable UltraSCALE portfolio

Dr. Wally Rhines: Watch out for 14/16nm technologies in 2014!

Outlook 2014: Xilinx bets big on 28nm

NOV. 2013
Indian electronics scenario still dull: Leaptech

Connecting intelligence today for connected world: ARM

India poses huge opportunity for DLP: TI

SEMICON Europa 2013: Where does Europe stand in 450mm path?

OCT. 2013
Apple’s done it again, wth iPad Air!

IEF 2013: New markets and opportunities in sub-20nm era!

SEPT. 2013
ST intros STM32F4 series high-performance Cortex-M4 MCUs

Great, India’s having fabs! But, is the tech choice right?

G450C

G450C

Now, India to have two semicon fabs!

Higher levels of abstraction growth area for EDA

AUG. 2013
Moore’s Law could come to an end within next decade: POET

What’s happening with 450mm: G450C update and status

300mm is the new 200mm!

JULY 2013
Xilinx tapes-out first UltraScale ASIC-class programmable architecture

JUNE 2013
EC’s goal: Reach 20 percent share in chip manufacturing by 2020!
Read more…

Very fitting finale to Harry Potter!


What a writer, J.K. Rowling! What a movie, the Harry Potter series! And, of course, what an illustrious star-cast!

I’ve just returned home after watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part II. And, I can’t stop thinking about the movie! Actually, I can’t stop thinking about the entire series! What a classic this has turned out to be!

Those who haven’t ever read the series, there’s nothing to worry! Your friends will surely commentate alongside you! 😉

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part II

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part II

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part II starts off from where Part I ended. Thereafter, it turns literally into a roller-coaster ride. Starting from the journey to the Gringotts Wizarding Bank, with Hermione Granger impersonating Bellatrix, little time has been wasted for Harry, along with Hermione and Ron Weasley, to return to Hogwarts school. We are introduced to Aberforth Dumbledore, the younger brother of late Prof. Albus Dumbledore, and to late Ms. Ariana, their sister, who actually goes and fetches Neville Longbottom from the school.

Now starts the real fun!

Right from the time where Harry confronts Helena Ravenclaw or the ‘Grey Lady’, the Death Eaters attacking Hogwarts, the very brave resistance and defense put up by the school inhabitants led by Prof. Minerva McGonagall, the tragic death of Severus Snape at the hands of Voldermort and his pet snake, Nagini, and Snape’s final meeting with Harry, following which Harry views Snape’s pensieve and learns about Snape’s love for his mother, Lily Potter, up to the time Harry enters the Forbidden Forest to meet his death! Its all breathtaking!!

The scene at the Forbidden Forest, where Voldermort appears to have ‘killed’ Harry, is quite chilling! Thereafter, it is all about the good triumphing over evil! You too need to watch the movie, isn’t it? 😉

All the right messages seem to have been made in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part II. Heroes require help to overcome evil, and so does Harry. Every person has a chance to do what’s right — as shown by Harry — even though that chance or choice may not be correct or right. Friends are shown standing up for each other, although, in the end, several (or some) fall, notably, Remus Lupin, and his wife Nymphadora Tonks, and Fred Weasley. Some battles are personal — again, Harry, and greater than one person. Harry’s rescue of his arch-rival, Draco Malfoy, from the Room of Requirement, is a great example of helping someone in great need!

What about the 3D effects? While I am not the right person to comment, one feels the movie would have still looked very fine, minus the 3D effects, but never mind!

As with all good things, the Harry Potter series of movies has now come to an end. And boy, don’t you feel it? It has been a decade long journey – first, with the books, and later, with the movies. As Harry Potter feels at the end of the book: All was well!

Categories: Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling

My old blog address is back! Am so happy!! :)

October 14, 2010 Comments off

Pradeep Chakraborty's Blog

Pradeep Chakraborty's Blog

My dear friends, this is a great day for me! Rohit Basa, manager – Business Development (North America), ProcSys, who is currently in the USA, just responded to an email I’d sent out inviting him for Durga Puja celebrations in town!

In his mail, Rohit very kindly informed me that my old blog address — http://pradeepchakraborty.blogspot.com — is again available for fresh registration. His message to me was crystal clear: “Book it before anyone else does and direct a link to your new website. I’m a great fan of yours, your blog and articles.”

Indeed! I was overjoyed when I re-registered the same old blog address, and got it back! I even brought back the same old look!! Well, at least, most of it!!!

The sheer pain of losing my original blog and blog address last August is something extremely difficult for me to get over! The effort I’d put in to develop that blog had been immense, and the loss was really shattering, to say the least! In fact, I even used to constantly check Blogger to find out whether the old blog address was still available.

While the pain has eased a bit on getting back my old blog address, I know very well that I simply cannot bring back the original traffic that it used to have. I moved my old blog to WordPress since that day it was taken off Blogger. The blog’s doing very well on WordPress. Still, the loss of my original Blogspot blog last year has haunted me every single day!

Thanks a ton, Rohit! I am so very touched and will remain forever obliged to you!!

I chose Sagar Desai of Symantec, from the US, a very close friend, as the next one to be informed that I’d got back my old blog address. Sagar stood by me in my darkest hour — when my old blog was injected with malware and later removed by Google in the middle of August, last year.

In fact, Sagar had commented just a while ago, on seeing my Durga Puja invite — “Did not know this cultural side of yours. Good to know that your life is just not semiconductors! ;)”

I’d then asked him whether I’d got typecast. His reply was — “That’s probably more to do with the way you brand yourself. Image set ho gaya hai! You need to break the stereotype.” 🙂

It is so very nice and touching to hear such remarks from a close friend! It shows that he cares, a lot! Perhaps, I am getting typecast as a semicon blogger.

Guess what! The other day, I was at a National Instruments event. A journalist friend and an ex-colleague, actually, found some new names for me. One was ‘Semicon Bong’ — since I’m a Bengali, and the other was ‘Semicon Bomb’! Ok, whatever that last one means.

Well, now I simply can’t wait to inform Usha Prasad, my associate and buddy, that I’ve managed to get back my old blogspot address. Usha stood by me during that time and has steadfastly been by my side since that time. I just can’t wait to see her reaction when she hears this news! She’s fast asleep now.. come morning, and this is the first thing I’m going to tell her!

Finally, many, many thanks to all of those friends who’ve stood by me all this time!

And, a very special thanks again from the bottom of my heart to Rohit! You really made my day, sorry, my year, buddy! 🙂

Here’s wishing everyone a very happy Durga Puja and Dusshera!

Epic — first ever web browser for India, from India!


Indians are highly skillful and innovative, and the recently released Epic web browser provides an excellent example. The Epic browser is said to be the first-ever web browser for India. It is also the first product from Bangalore-based Hidden Reflex, a software company. Hidden Reflex is a software product start-up founded by Alok Bhardwaj in 2007.

Epic incidentally comes with a built-in anti-virus scanner. Some privacy features include one-click private data deletion, one-click private browsing, and flash cookie deletion built-in (Epic claims to be the first browser ever to kill them!).

The Epic web browser.

The Epic web browser.

Quite nice and easy to use and surf the web, Epic has loads of sidebar applications — a huge plus point! You can type in any Indian language. Next, you can skin your Epic browser.

I selected Sunil Gavaskar, the famous Indian cricketer, as my skin (see top of image) for multiple reasons. One, I feel that he’s the one man who changed the way India plays cricket today, starting from his epic performances in the West Indies in 1971! Two, whatever anyone wishes to say, he is India’s greatest test cricket batsman ever! The other choice was Bruce Lee, but I could not locate him!

Next, there’s an application that lets you edit and save as text or HTML. There’s another application called Snippets, which lets you highlight text, images, etc., and drag and drop into the sidebar to create a snippet. I tried developing one and it works quite well.

Users would be interested to know about a video sidebar. You can perform a YouTube search while working, and find and watch the video you like! The My Computer application opens all folders you’d like to see. So, you can open any folder and directly open any file or files, while surfing on the browser. Another application lets you create a To Do list, to remind you of the chores you need to do! Yet another interesting application has a timer, alerts and stopwatch.

There are direct links to social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Orkut, as well as to Gmail and Yahoo — all on the browser’s sidebar. Okay, there’s a Maps application as well. You can use the built in Google Map to locate places, find directions, etc.

There’s a travel application, which allows you to book air tickets via Yatra, Cleartrip, etc. I clicked on the Trains, which showed up Cleartrip. Wish that Epic can add the IRCTC website as well at the earliest.

There’s a sidebar application on Jobs as well! I tried it out, and again, it works well! Games is yet another application of interest! I didn’t try that out, lest I get sidetracked! Read more…

Future Horizons signs me as its India affiliate!

December 2, 2009 2 comments

Recently, Future Horizons signed me up as its India affiliate. It is indeed, an honor to be an affiliate for any leading research and consulting house, and I am grateful that Malcolm Penn, chairman and CEO, thought that I would fit the bill.

I have known Malcolm for several years now. Although I know making any forecast is really tricky stuff, and nine times out of ten, one is bound to go wrong, owing to market conditions and other unforeseen happenings, I’d still stick my head out and say — hey forecasters, you do a great job!

Even I’ve asked Malcolm several times as to whether Future Horizons would be revising its forecasts. And yes, it has, it does and will probably continue to do so in the future. That’s the nature of the global semiconductor industry!

There is a lot of semicon related activity going on in India, besides solar/PV. Just take a look at some of my recent  posts on embedded, some of the initiatives undertaken by the ISA to promote the Indian industry overseas — particularly, in the UK and Japan.

With so much new activity in India, am sure that a lot of Future Horizons’ publications, its well known International Electronics Forum (IEF) and the Start Up Service will appeal to this market. I am new, rather a greenhorn, and will seek the industry’s guidance and support in playing my role as a Future Horizons’ affiliate. And no, I won’t be writing anything for Future Horizons. Of course, I will continue my posts on the global semiconductor industry forecasts with Malcolm, as I do with several others — here, on my blog.

Personally, I’d love to see an international semiconductor conference hosted in India. Am tired of hearing friends overseas telling me: Hey, there’s this big show being held in the USA or Taipei. Are you attending?

Incidentally, I was very pleased to be able to attend SEMI India’s Solarcon 2009 last month in Hyderabad — a truly global event with a galaxy of international speakers. So, I turned around and asked my friends — hey, why aren’t you attending?

I hope Malcolm can some day bring IEF to India, with the help of the India Semiconductor Association. It will really act as a major boost for the Indian semiconductor industry.

On another note
Today, it is exactly a year since my blog and I won Electronicsweekly.com’s World Title for the Best Blog in the Electronics Hardware category in Dec. 2008! Alun Williams from Electronicsweekly.com recently told me: “There is no EW blog awards this year, by the way. We’ll do it bi-annually, so you get to keep your crown for another year!” Thanks to Alun and Electronicsweekly.com.

Thanks for all of your kind support, dear readers, friends and well wishers, who have cared to stop by my blog now and then. Some of you also leave comments from time to time. I personally don’t know most of you who leave comments, but many thanks to all of you for doing so.  Hope that you continue to find my blog and my work useful.

If there’s something missing in my blog, do understand that I have several constraints, and also do not have access to lot of companies, regions, shows, etc., as I’m merely a blogger. Nor am I part of any large media house! Nor am I any authority on semiconductors, solar or telecom, and so on and so forth!

If, at any stage, I am forced to stop writing, or otherwise, this blog belongs to all of you!

Have a merry X’mas and a very Happy New Year, lest I forget to wish everyone. 🙂 Best wishes and good night!

My blog’s been nominated again — by Computer Weekly, UK!


Computer Weekly Blog Awards

Computer Weekly Blog Awards

Wow! It has happened again! What a relief!! I am overwhelmed!!!

For those who are unaware, during the middle of August, my original blog — http://pradeepchakraborty.blogspot.com — was suddenly found to be containing malware, and then, without any information, Google removed my blog. That was really devastating!

Not knowing what to do, I quickly rolled out a fresh blog — http://pradeep-chakraborty.blogspot.com — only to find out two days later that it also had malware, and subsequently, Google blocked it too!

Despite mails and requests, nothing happened, and none of the two blogs were returned!

If this alone wasn’t enough, five of my other blogs — on telecom, semiconductors, components, solar and electronics — were marked as spam blogs! All of this, within a space of one week, as though someone, somewhere was out to get me! Rather, remove me from cyberspace, so it seemed!

It was only then, that I moved everything to WordPress — and hence, https://pradeepchakraborty.wordpress.com really came into being. It had been around since 2007, but I only re-activated it when I was literally forced to move my blogspot posts to wordpress.

Not only did I lose traffic, there were lots of emails and messages from folks who were followers of my earlier blog!

Today afternoon, after returning from meetings, I get a mail from Computer Weekly, UK, with this message:

Congratulations, you’ve been nominated for an Award! You are now entered for a Computer Weekly Blog Award, under the category of IT Consultant and Analyst.

I was also pointed to a link: http://epidm.edgesuite.net/RBI/computerweekly/CWAWA/nomin_notification20091006.html

And,

Download your badge here:

http://email.computerweekly.com/cgi-bin1/DM/y/eBz6e0bTQjI0BCI10F7FO0EP

This is just the first stage on your way to winning. The awards will be judged by readers of Computer Weekly and users of ComputerWeekly.com, so start building up support right now — brag about your nomination on your site by downloading a Blog Awards badge onto your homepage.

I tried adding the badge to WordPress, but for some reason it does not appear. So, I’ve added a jpeg image above.

Computerweekly.com also left this message for me: Check out Computer Weekly and ComputerWeekly.com on 27th October to see if you’ve been shortlisted. Voting for shortlisted entries will open on 27th October.

Save the date!

All shortlisted bloggers and tweeters will be invited to our Awards evening on 25th November 2009 at London’s exclusive Shoreditch House. More details to follow in your shortlisted announcement.

Irrespective of my blog getting shortlisted and whether I win this time or not, it is a relief to know that folks still like my blog.

Friends, August 2009
was a testing month with my blogs either getting knocked out or blocked. Three great friends, particularly, Usha Prasad, Sagar Desai and Jo Kuo, along with my family, stood right by me at all times during those testing times!

Scott Weitzman left a lovely message, Poornima Shenoy gave me good advice, Sandesh Advani kept his faith me, as did Intel. Rahuldev Rajguru decided to wait and maintained his faith, as did Meghna Bhutoria, and lately, LK Pathak. The semiconductor and the solar/PV industry stood by me, steadfastly, all this while!

There were good wishes from several others — the list is so long that they can’t be all accommodated here.

My other blog — http://pradeep-chakraborty.blogspot.com — was also eventually returned by Google, without the malware warning, this month.

All I can say is: thanks a lot, my dear friends and dear readers. Whether I get shortlisted or win — these things hardly matter! What matters to me is: I shall always have folks such as you to lean on during tough times. Thanks a lot, everyone.

Finally, thanks a lot for selecting my blog, Computer Weekly.

Welcome to PC’s Telecom Blog!

April 24, 2009 Comments off

Welcome to PC’s Telecom Blog (http://pctelecoms.blogspot.com)!

Hi friends, I’ve been thinking about adding a telecom blog to my network for a very long time! The reason being, I started my career in electronics and telecom back in 1989.

I had the privilege of being part of Asian Sources Telecom Products — a site, which I managed and built, with the help of my team and colleagues at Asian Sources Media, and later, Global Sources. Later, I moved on to Wireless Week, USA, as Asia Pacific Editor for the Asian Edition.

Back in India, I managed Convergence Plus for a short while, before launching four sites for CIOL in 2004 — Mobility, Networking, Storage and Security.

Given this background in telecommunications, it is apt for me to start a blog on this subject as well. Telecom has been my forte, and well, it is a subject that has also won me four awards in technology journalism, while at Global Sources.

Again, this blog has been spun out off my award winning blog! That blog remains unchanged, and will continue to carry top-quality, world class content!

This blogs will now include specific blog posts related to telecommunications, as well as press releases, industry updates, new products, features, statistics, etc. It will cover wireless, wireline, broadband, networking, optical networking, Test & Measurement, etc.

Thanks for your kind support as always. Suggestions for improvements are always welcome! 🙂

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