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 What Would Joe Do?
Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena is a freelance journalist and Editor of EDA Confidential at She can be reached at peggy at aycinena dot com.

EDAC Gala: Channeling our inner angels

October 10th, 2013 by Peggy Aycinena

Given that history and innovation are being featured here in this space this week, it’s only appropriate to highlight the fact that EDAC is hosting a very interesting event related to history and innovation in Silicon Valley next week.

On Wednesday, October 16th, those who have made massive contributions to the EDA industry will be highlighted and celebrated at a black-tie optional dinner at the Computer History Museum. If you’re interested in rubbing elbows with the powerful and prolific, you should be going to this event. If you want a chance to bid at auction for lunch with today’s corporate leaders in EDA, you should be going to this event. If you think said corporate leaders make enough money to pay for your lunch, rather than vice versa, you should still be going to this event.

That’s because, if you go to the EDAC dinner and if you contribute any amount of money amidst the zaniness of a wine-fueled auction on Wednesday evening, the people who run the CHM will use your donation to create a new gallery in their museum – a long-overdue display that promises to showcase the contributions electronic design automation has made to the development of modern technology.

At some level, this dinner is wonderful and excellent. At another level, it’s just plain silly. Anybody who knows “EDA: Is where Electronics Begins”, knows that the last 50 years in the semiconductor industry have been built on increasingly sophisticated design automation.

You don’t need the Computer History Museum to tell you that. You don’t need the museum to tell you that it’s no longer about how many angels a theologian can place on the head of a pin; now it’s about how many transistors a design engineer can place on a silicon die. It’s that simple and that complicated, both at the same time.

And it’s those millions of transistors, now into the billions, that have made everything that we love here in the 21st century possible: tablets, smartphones, ubiquitous connectivity, wireless car fobs and the NSA. So go to this dinner.

Meet the people you admire most: Wally, Aart, Lip-Bu, Kathryn, Cooley, Bernie, Jacques, Bob, Randy, Dave, Raul, Rick, Ed, Joe, Dean, John, Bob, Jack, Soha, Penny, Jim, Chenming, John, Ernie, Rajeev, Dave, Alan, Scott, John, Simon, Jim, Sanjay, and Ravi.

If you know who these people are without even seeing their last names, you should be at the dinner on Wednesday. If you know how much at least 5 of these people made selling their companies to other people on this list, you should be at the dinner on Wednesday. If you want to help sculpt the history of this industry, as least the way the story will be told by the Computer History Museum, you should be at this dinner on Wednesday.

It costs $200 if you’re a member of EDAC, $250 if you’re not. Aw come’on. Shell out the money. Go to the dinner. Nobody’s getting any younger and this luminous group may never be in the same room at the same time ever again.

The facts surrounding their contributions, and probably yours as well, will be told far better by the Computer History Museum with the funds that will be raised at the EDAC dinner. Be there, observe the group, and enjoy the fact that you’re involved in the most interesting industry in the world.


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