DAC Austin, while seemingly not as busy as last year, was one of my best DACS in YEARS. I left DAC with several new clients and job reqs, so from my perspective it was terrific. However, while my ego thinks I am important and the best judge, others may not, so let’s talk about what I heard talking to so many for three full days. DAC is still the place for us in EDA to come together to do business. Yes, it has lost a bit of its allure as the place for the good ole boys of EDA to come together, but as I notice more and more every year, there are not as many good ole boys left.
As a 20-year veteran, I am considered by many to be an old-timer (which I hate thinking about; how about you just call me a long-time veteran much younger than most)! As always, those that knew the right people, saw the right people. Most booths were busy and several people I know well were locked in meetings consistently…that is the real criteria. All in all, DAC 2017 was a success with decent attendance (though I doubt they broke any attendance records this year, we shall know soon enough) and contrary to the beliefs of some, DAC will be around for many years to come.
As for the future of EDA, I doubt it is a secret to anyone to learn that EDA is not the first choice on new grads’ agendas and that many quality engineers have migrated out. Careers in IOT or similar spokes on the proverbial wheel of Internet programming and functionality are, as some would say, a bit more exciting. The reality is that no one ever claimed that EDA is the most exciting field in the business, though those that go to DAC and see the endless magicians and parties might somewhat disagree. (Most of them don’t get out much).