Reading time ( words)
By a show of hands, who has seen the 2006 Disney/Pixar-animated film Cars? My guess is that most of you have, especially if you have kids. Do you recall thinking, "Yes, this could really happen!" If not, did you think of the film as science fiction, or maybe just fantasy?
Well, guess what, it isn't so far-fetched any more, aside from the cute car faces and actual talking. And probably some of the more outlandish stunts or getting mad and racing each other is also a stretch. But, oh my goodness—automobiles communicating with each other and driving themselves? I believe we're there.
Unless you have been on another planet or far, far away, you could not have missed the almost daily news items on self-driving cars, new electronic gadgets for cars, new safety features… and almost as many items about recalls.
There's not just slightly more electronics in automobiles—the electronics are increasing exponentially. And all those exciting new features have as their basic building block (ta da!) printed circuit boards, components and assemblies.
And if you haven't figured it out yet, that's the subject of all three of our I-Connect007 magazines this month: Cars—a Driving Force in Electronics. And we've got quite a line-up right here in The PCB Magazine, including an overview of the automotive electronics market today, where it's heading tomorrow, and what it all means to companies wanting to participate; latest innovations in automotive electronics; what to expect in our car of the future; and how lessons learned about supplier management and relationships can apply to any industry or market segment.