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'[PIC]: microchip.com bad site'
2001\02\20@025113 by Roman Black

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face
Hi people, time for a <rant>

Has anyone else gone looking for a PIC at the
new Microchip.com site and been really miffed
by the way they have changed it??

It used to have each "family" page with the PICs
listed down the page, and each PIC had a little
box showing rom size, number of pins, timers, etc
etc. So you could scroll up and down the page and
compare the PICs to see which one had enough pins
and enough memory...

Their "new improved" web page is a disaster!
Each family page just has a list of the PIC numbers
with no info!!! You have to click on each one,
wait for the page to load, before you can even see
what memory size that PIC has!! What moron web
designer at Microchip could possibly think that
was a step forward??? You're sacked buddy!

For people with slow modems on the other side of the
planet (like poor little me) this was a really uncool
change to an already poor web site.

Haven't those retarded web site programmers at
Microchip ever been to a GOOD web site like Texas
Instruments, National semiconductor, or... heck,
just about anybody??

TI get my vote. I was there looking for a DAC the
other day, they have a couple of hundred listed on
the SAME PAGE (listening Microchip?), so I could
just scroll up or down and see the 8-bit, 10-bit
ones. It's in a column. If it is single DAC, or dual,
etc. If it serial or parallel. By just scrolling up
and down the page there was ALL the info I needed
to choose a product.

And it loaded real quick, pages of text do that.
And WOW! Just by clicking one button I could SAVE
the data for EVERY CHIP to my hard drive to see
anytime! And again, by pressing one button I can
print all this data to paper that I can highlight
products and write notes on. Modern technology,
isn't it wonderful.

OK, maybe Microchip do provide a "search" facility,
(but it's not working at the moment). Anyway, why
should I have to enter data and wait for it to go
and find what I want?? How do I print the whole
product list from that to view later?? Who said
a java solution was supposed to be better??

What a joke Microchip web designers. Get your
act together! Visit some good sites and take
notes. And ADD PRICES! See the NS home page...
Even a ballpark price is really handy when
choosing a chip for the next project.

I am real annoyed at having to click on EVERY
SINGLE PIC (and then wait) just to see how much
memory or pins it has!!!
</rant>

As a positive input, why not just have all PICs
listed on one page (there are not that many!)
and colour code each column.
Like the "pins" column could be red for 18 pin
devices and blue for 28 pin devices etc.
You could colour code the device name for flash,
eprom,otp, etc. You could colour code the rom
column for 1k, 2k, 4k, etc. And show prices.

This would give a quick loading, saveable, printable,
one-page lookup table. You could scroll up or
down and instantly find all the 18pin, 2k devices.
The peripherals and pricing etc, columns allow you to
quickly choose between types and consider different
design options based on having ALL the information
in front of you at once. The absolute greatest
functionality...
Ahhhh. Dreaming again. :o)
-Roman

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2001\02\20@082515 by mike

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On Fri, 26 Nov 1999 18:46:42 +1100, you wrote:

>Hi people, time for a <rant>
>
>Has anyone else gone looking for a PIC at the
>new Microchip.com site and been really miffed
>by the way they have changed it??
<snip>
>TI get my vote. I was there looking for a DAC the
>other day, they have a couple of hundred listed on
>the SAME PAGE (listening Microchip?), so I could
>just scroll up or down and see the 8-bit, 10-bit
>ones. It's in a column. If it is single DAC, or dual,
>etc. If it serial or parallel. By just scrolling up
>and down the page there was ALL the info I needed
>to choose a product.
..although it's not perfect - recently I was after data on a new
product - I found the press release, but it had no links to the data
sheet - had to hunt elsewhere for it!
I would comment NS and TI for making it easy to find pricing info, but
no-one offers the feature that almost all users would really want -
list in order of PRICE!
>OK, maybe Microchip do provide a "search" facility,
>(but it's not working at the moment). ..I've NEVER found a good search facility on any semi makers' website
- I've lost track of the number of times I've failed to find something
with 'search' but subsequently found it by trudging around. And I'm
only talking about searhing for exact part numbers! How hard can it be
to make this work properly?

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2001\02\20@093934 by James Paul

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Roman,

At the risk of sounding sarcastic, why don't you just get a line
card from Microchip?  They'll send you one in the mail along with
a CD of the whole website.  And it only takes a few days.  Just a
thought.   I'll go look at the NEW site now and see what I think.

                                              Regards,

                                                Jim



On Thu, 25 November 1999, Roman Black wrote:

{Quote hidden}

.....jimKILLspamspam.....jpes.com

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2001\02\20@094805 by Simon Nield

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mike:
>list in order of PRICE!
>...
>..I've NEVER found a good search facility on any semi makers' website

you should check out the natsemi website, it's excellent. You get parametric tables (including
price) which you can sort by any column... for example:
www.national.com/parametric/0,1850,2820,00.html
They even give you volume pricing information, which is usually like getting blood out of a stone.

Regards,
Simon

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2001\02\20@095013 by promero

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part 0 44 bytes
his is a multi-part message in MIME format.
part 1 302 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset=us-ascii (decoded 7bit)

you should try downloading the product line card which contains many
tables with the characteristics of every single microchip products. The
only thing you won't find there is pricing information (it will take
time because it's 1.3Mb long, but it will be only once)


part 2 422 bytes content-type:text/x-vcard; charset=us-ascii;
(decoded quoted-printable)

begin:vcard n:Romero Plaza;Pável Ernesto
tel;cell:5489528
tel;fax:6-7444829
tel;home:6-7464233
tel;work:6-7444829
x-mozilla-html:TRUE
url:http://www.insitel.com.co
org:Insitel Ltda.;Research & Development
adr:;;Calle 21 # 16 - 46 Piso 7;Armenia;Quindío;;Colombia
version:2.1
email;internet:@spam@promeroKILLspamspaminsitel.com.co
title:Hardware Engineer
fn:Pável Ernesto Romero Plaza
end:vcard


part 3 105 bytes
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2001\02\20@100431 by David VanHorn

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At 12:19 AM 2/20/01 -0500, promero wrote:
>you should try downloading the product line card which contains many
>tables with the characteristics of every single microchip products. The
>only thing you won't find there is pricing information (it will take
>time because it's 1.3Mb long, but it will be only once)
>Content-Type: text/x-vcard; charset=us-ascii;
>  name="promero.vcf"
>Content-Description: Card for promero
>Content-Disposition: attachment;
>  filename="promero.vcf"
>X-MIME-Autoconverted: from 8bit to quoted-printable by
>silena.insitel.com.co id JAA01402


Your mail is coming across here in a very odd format, with header lines in
the body of the message.

Just FYI.

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2001\02\20@101231 by Olin Lathrop

face picon face
> Has anyone else gone looking for a PIC at the
> new Microchip.com site and been really miffed
> by the way they have changed it??

I noticed their new Java interface the other day too.  Yes, it's a lot
slower with no apparent adavantages, but you're missing the point.  Web
sites have to be cool, which of course means using all the latest technology
with maximal TLAs.  Lots of spiffy animated graphics is a must too.  Sure,
actual site visitors may get annoyed at how long it takes to download every
page, but that's the price of progress.  But most importantly this stuff is
much more fun and profitable for the web developers than creating those old
fashion content-laden pages.  Who'd want to be caught dead with one of those
on their resume!

By the way, each page seemed to have three choices down the bottom about web
page style.  The default was the new Java stuff.  It seemed that if you
selected the non-Java mode you ended up with the old site.

> OK, maybe Microchip do provide a "search" facility,
> (but it's not working at the moment).

Yeah, what a crock!  I was delighted to hear they had finally set up a
parametric search engine, so I gave it a little test drive to see what it
could do.  Just to pick something, the task I set for myself was to find all
the PICs that have both UART and IIC modules.

The first page is broken into two separate boxes, labeled something like
"general parameters" and "specific parameters".  I never did understand the
distinction and why they had to be separate.  You could only select one I/O
module at a time, so I started by asking for all PICs with UARTs.  I looked
at the list and indeed it seemed to have found the right matches.  OK, so
now I figured I could search this list for those PICs that have IIC modules,
which should yield the list that has both UARTs and IICs.  Down the bottom
of the list it says to hit the refine button below to refine your search,
except that there is nothing below.  Duh!  Didn't they test this at all?!!
So I went back to the previous page with the two blocks of choices.  This
time I selected IIC module and hit "refine".  This generated a list of all
PICs with IIC modules, not just the ones in my previous search results.
Argh!!  So how does one refine an existing search as apposed to starting a
new one?  I never did figure this out, but I know it's not done with the
"refine" button.

I noticed the whole search engine was taken down a day after I pointed this
out to the folks a Microchip.  Maybe they are fixing it.

> And ADD PRICES!

Yes, yes, please!  Yes, I understand real prices vary, but at least some
form of relative prices would be very useful.  I suggest the quantity 1000
list price, but anything consistant will do.  The purpose is not to figure
out exactly how much a design will cost to produce, but rather some idea of
the cost of tradeoffs.

> I am real annoyed at having to click on EVERY
> SINGLE PIC (and then wait) just to see how much
> memory or pins it has!!!

Check out the line card.  That's what it's for.  The new Q1 2001 line cards
are being sent out now, so this is a good time to ask for one from you local
office.  You can also download the PDF from the web site.  The line card is
my primary tool for chosing a PIC, especially since the parametric search
engine is so useless.


*****************************************************************
Olin Lathrop, embedded systems consultant in Devens Massachusetts
(978) 772-3129, spamBeGoneolinspamBeGonespamembedinc.com, http://www.embedinc.com

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2001\02\20@101852 by Stephen B Webb

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> Has anyone else gone looking for a PIC at the
> new Microchip.com site and been really miffed
> by the way they have changed it??

Yes, I was.  One of the first rules in web usability is "consistency".
Make the site look/feel/work the same all over, and don't change it on a
whim.

I do believe you can get the old site somehow (by clicking on the middle
option for site display type ...)  I also visited it wiht Netscape 4.7 (or
something) under linux, and the old site was displayed without event.

Hmm..

While we are ranting and raving:

National semconductor's site sucks.  Hard to find shit, slow to load.
Agilent's site sucks.  Hard to find prices/small q order, etc.
Digikey's site is very nice. Easy to search, etc.


Steve

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2001\02\20@103812 by Bob

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If you truly want to see the manufacturer's site from hell, take a look at SGS
Thomson's web site ( http://us.st.com/ )

And then try to find the correct "contact" number..... (good luck).

{Original Message removed}

2001\02\20@104303 by Robert Shady

picon face
Wow.. This must have REALLY upset you. :)
Just go to this link:

http://www.microchip.com/10/

It will take you to their old website.

-- Rob

--- Roman Black <fastvidEraseMEspam.....EZY.NET.AU> wrote:
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2001\02\20@110000 by severson

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> I noticed their new Java interface the other day too.  Yes, it's a lot
> slower with no apparent adavantages, but you're missing the
> point.  Web
> sites have to be cool, which of course means using all the
> latest technology
> with maximal TLAs.  Lots of spiffy animated graphics is a
> must too.  Sure,
> actual site visitors may get annoyed at how long it takes to
> download every
> page, but that's the price of progress.  But most importantly
> this stuff is
> much more fun and profitable for the web developers than
> creating those old
> fashion content-laden pages.  Who'd want to be caught dead
> with one of those
> on their resume!

I have a feeling about the design of sites like this. My guess is that the
site is designed, as you also suspect, by a graphics-weenie intent on
flashiness.

But I'd guess that the big problem is that the weenie shows the site to the
company for approval ON A LOCAL MACHINE. Sure, all of this java, animation,
and data served from the host is fast when demonstrated locally.

When you complain to mchip (or whoever has an annoying site) tell them to
access their own site from a 33k modem. Perhaps then they will understand.

-Rob

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2001\02\20@114028 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>By the way, each page seemed to have three choices down the bottom about web
>page style.  The default was the new Java stuff.  It seemed that if you
>selected the non-Java mode you ended up with the old site.

I saw that too, and quickly clicked the graphic page, as that is what I have
always used. It is also nice that they give a text option, though I have never
tried to use it - one advantage on being on a university network where the
slowest bit of cable is from the wall to your PC.:)

Apart from the way they have rearranged the parametric sort so you have to
select each processor to find out about it, the graphic page does seem to be the
same as always.

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2001\02\20@114359 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>If you truly want to see the manufacturer's site from hell, take a look at SGS
>Thomson's web site ( http://us.st.com/ )

You are not wrong there. why does it try and load an EXE onto my machine when I
try and do any enquiry???

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2001\02\20@115431 by Mike Mansheim

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from Olin:
>I noticed their new Java interface the other day too.  Yes, it's a lot
>slower with no apparent adavantages, but you're missing the point.  Web
>sites have to be cool, which of course means using all the latest
technology
>with maximal TLAs.

Admitting to already not being cool myself, I can ask the dumb question.
What is a TLA??

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2001\02\20@115853 by Dale Botkin

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On Tue, 20 Feb 2001, Mike Mansheim wrote:

> Admitting to already not being cool myself, I can ask the dumb question.
> What is a TLA??

Three-Letter Acronym...  so TLA in actually recursive in a way.  Web
developers sometimes seem to think the site just has to be "buzzword
compliant" even if there is no valuable content there.

Dale
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2001\02\20@120058 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>What is a TLA??

Three Letter Acronym - not to be confused with an FLA consisting of four
letters.

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2001\02\20@120526 by Bob Ammerman

picon face
The microchip site was never great, but the new design is AWFUL!

The JAVA/FRAMES think is _way_ too slow.

Losing the 'quick look' at basic specs (ie: line card type information) is
also rotten.


Bob Ammerman
RAm Systems
(contract development of high performance, high function, low-level
software)

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2001\02\20@120734 by Douglas Wood

picon face
A "TLA" is a Three Leter Acronym.

A "FLEA" is a Four Letter Extended Acronym

(Humor)

Douglas Wood
Software Enigneer
EraseMEdbwoodspamEraseMEkc.rr.com

Home of the EPICIS Development System for the PIC and SX
http://www.piclist.com/techref/member/DW--RA4

{Original Message removed}

2001\02\20@120738 by Douglas Wood

picon face
Except that "FLA" doesn't consist of four letters. Use "FLEA" (Four Letter
Extended Acronym).

Douglas Wood
Software Enigneer
@spam@dbwood@spam@spamspam_OUTkc.rr.com

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{Original Message removed}

2001\02\20@121150 by Bob Ammerman

picon face
----- Original Message -----
From: Robert Shady <spamBeGonepicnewbiespamKILLspamYAHOO.COM>
To: <.....PICLISTspam_OUTspamMITVMA.MIT.EDU>
Sent: Tuesday, February 20, 2001 10:42 AM
Subject: Re: [PIC]: microchip.com bad site


> Wow.. This must have REALLY upset you. :)
> Just go to this link:
>
> http://www.microchip.com/10/
>
> It will take you to their old website.
>
> -- Rob

Nope!

It gets rid of the JAVA/FRAMES garbage but you still have to drill down to
each device to check its basic parameters.

And the parametric search is still down.

Bob Ammerman
RAm Systems
(contract development of high performance, high function, low-level
software)

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2001\02\20@122011 by Roman Black

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James Paul wrote:
>
>  Roman,
>
>  At the risk of sounding sarcastic, why don't you just get a line
>  card from Microchip?  They'll send you one in the mail along with
>  a CD of the whole website.  And it only takes a few days.  Just a
>  thought.   I'll go look at the NEW site now and see what I think.
>
>                                                Regards,
>
>                                                  Jim


I have the CD. It's a pain in the butt. My line card is
old and really doesn't provide the functionality possible
even with just a decent HTML table online. And having to
ring up everytime I need a price?? Don't they know their
own prices???

With our products we list the price on the HOME page near
the top. Price should be a selling point, not some mystical
voodoo magic that only the annointed sacred sales rep
can pray for an answer. ;o)
-Roman


{Quote hidden}

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2001\02\20@122232 by Roman Black

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promero wrote:
>
> you should try downloading the product line card which contains many
> tables with the characteristics of every single microchip products. The
> only thing you won't find there is pricing information (it will take
> time because it's 1.3Mb long, but it will be only once)

And a 1.3Mb line card is better than a 50kb color coded HTML
table? How? ;o)
-Roman

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2001\02\20@123724 by Roman Black

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face
Olin Lathrop wrote:
>
> > Has anyone else gone looking for a PIC at the
> > new Microchip.com site and been really miffed
> > by the way they have changed it??
>
> I noticed their new Java interface the other day too.  Yes, it's a lot
> slower with no apparent adavantages, but you're missing the point.  Web
> sites have to be cool, which of course means using all the latest technology
> with maximal TLAs.  Lots of spiffy animated graphics is a must too.  Sure,
> actual site visitors may get annoyed at how long it takes to download every
> page, but that's the price of progress.  But most importantly this stuff is
> much more fun and profitable for the web developers than creating those old
> fashion content-laden pages.  Who'd want to be caught dead with one of those
> on their resume!
>
> By the way, each page seemed to have three choices down the bottom about web
> page style.  The default was the new Java stuff.  It seemed that if you
> selected the non-Java mode you ended up with the old site.

Ha ha! So i'm not the only old fashioned person that values
actual function??

A pretty web page that performs slowly/badly is like buying
a pretty car that can only do 10mph... The designer should
be SHOT.

{Quote hidden}

Not fixed yet. I got "page not found". At least
you got something!


> > And ADD PRICES!
>
> Yes, yes, please!  Yes, I understand real prices vary, but at least some
> form of relative prices would be very useful.  I suggest the quantity 1000
> list price, but anything consistant will do.  The purpose is not to figure
> out exactly how much a design will cost to produce, but rather some idea of
> the cost of tradeoffs.

You got it in one. Some of the other manufacturers do it,
and do it well. Even if we just get a rough idea of 1000q
pricing we can work with that. We know it gets dearer for
small q and cheaper for large q, and roughly how much.
We're just poor overworked designers that have to choose
between a $5 chip and a $12 chip.

I'm sick of "praying at the altar of the sacred but
incompetent sales rep" and waiting days for the
holy pricing answers.


> > I am real annoyed at having to click on EVERY
> > SINGLE PIC (and then wait) just to see how much
> > memory or pins it has!!!
>
> Check out the line card.  That's what it's for.  The new Q1 2001 line cards
> are being sent out now, so this is a good time to ask for one from you local
> office.  You can also download the PDF from the web site.  The line card is
> my primary tool for chosing a PIC, especially since the parametric search
> engine is so useless.

Thanks for the tip. I'll download it. Still seems
annoying that i'm loyal to Microchip but get stuffed
around so much.  Seems that their site is so poor we
are all rushing to download a big file so we never
have to suffer going to their site. Surely someone
there has a clue?

Maybe if enough piclisters complained (offered
suggestions?) they might improve their site...
-Roman

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2001\02\20@124157 by Roman Black

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Stephen B Webb wrote:
>
> > Has anyone else gone looking for a PIC at the
> > new Microchip.com site and been really miffed
> > by the way they have changed it??
>
> Yes, I was.  One of the first rules in web usability is "consistency".
> Make the site look/feel/work the same all over, and don't change it on a
> whim.
>
> I do believe you can get the old site somehow (by clicking on the middle
> option for site display type ...)  I also visited it wiht Netscape 4.7 (or
> something) under linux, and the old site was displayed without event.


I always choose the "0" site (text version) and this
choice is now on the front page: http://www.microchip.com
but even the text only site still has the new (bad)
changes.



>
> Hmm..
>
> While we are ranting and raving:
>
> National semconductor's site sucks.  Hard to find shit, slow to load.
> Agilent's site sucks.  Hard to find prices/small q order, etc.
> Digikey's site is very nice. Easy to search, etc.

I have had good experiences at the NS site, but
must admit I had a good idea what I wanted when i
went there. Haven't tried the others. :o)
-Roman

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2001\02\20@134745 by James Paul

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On Tue, 20 February 2001, Mike Mansheim wrote:

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2001\02\20@140016 by James Paul

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Roman,

AMEN to what you just said.  I agree 100% about the prices being
a selling point.   I wish all internet vendors followed this same
philosophy. But to be fair, some parts of the electronics components
markets are so volatile that if a price were published, it could be
very wrong 5 minutes later.  And either the customer or the vendor
would lose a bunch.  But generally speaking, I agree with you.

                                               Regards,

                                                 Jim



On Tue, 20 February 2001, Roman Black wrote:

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2001\02\20@210339 by David P. Harris

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Actually, I just use the Digikey catalog, it has simple tables and
prices :-)
Its just very upto date.
David

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2001\02\26@011353 by Harold M Hallikainen

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On Wed, 21 Feb 2001 04:21:01 +1100 Roman Black <RemoveMEfastvidEraseMEspamKILLspamEZY.NET.AU>
writes:
> I have the CD. It's a pain in the butt. My line card is
> old and really doesn't provide the functionality possible
> even with just a decent HTML table online. And having to
> ring up everytime I need a price?? Don't they know their
> own prices???


       I think CD-ROM is today's microfiche. Just about as convenient. You've
gotta go dig thru the pile of CD-ROMs the suppliers send you, stick it in
the machine, then find the page you want. Of course, the CD-ROM was out
of date the day before you got it.
       The web is the ONLY way to distribute product info, though I generally
get a bound "datasheet" with product samples, which is a little easier to
deal with than my 200 pages of printed out pdf.
       On our internal network, I have an HTML page called "Suppliers."
Manufacturers are listed by product category with links to their home
pages. If there's a part I'm designing in to a product, I put a link to
that datasheet under the manufacturer's name. This HTML page has replaced
my shelves full of databooks.
       So... for this application, I think CD-ROMs are obsolete...

Harold

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