Field Tests and the Silver Screen (Episode One)

It’s Iron Man vs. Thanos, the final battle scene of Avengers: Endgame. Thousands of warriors span the screen as the two armies collide—explosions and carnage on all sides. With a snap of his fingers, Thanos declares: “I am inevitable”. But there’s one more plot twist that renders Thanos powerless and brings us to Tony Stark’s famous last words: “I am … Read More

Technical Leadership Lessons from Edison

If Thomas Edison was working at a defense contractor today, he would probably be the world’s most effective principal engineer, teaching us valuable technical leadership lessons. Although he’s most widely known for the invention of the lightbulb, Edison holds a total of 1,093 patents in the United States. To date, he is acclaimed as America’s most prolific inventor. That level … Read More

Dinosaur Bones and Wireless Signals

The American Museum of Natural History is known for its iconic Tyrannosaurus Rex, the centerpiece of the museum’s Hall of Dinosaurs. As visitors stare up at this magnificent skeleton, they see this 4-foot-long jaw studded with its 6-inch teeth and could imagine this creature chasing its prey across the plains of Texas millions of years ago.  (Don’t worry, we’ll get … Read More

RF Recorders are the Ultimate Scout

In designing a wireless system, certain assumptions about the propagation path are generally made. Idealized models are often used as a baseline to model the path even if they don’t necessarily represent the real world. Seasoned engineers understand that the real world is more complex than that. When the ideal world meets the real world in the field, the sleepless … Read More

RF Recorders Turn an Expense into an Investment

Field tests are expensive—and not just in a monetary sense. Sure, you’ll rack up thousands of dollars a day in equipment rental expenses, vehicle rentals, airfare, hotel costs, meals, etc…that’s obvious. But field tests also drain your company’s most valuable assets: the engineers. Here’s how RF recorders can be your best ally in RF record and playback: Field Tests Limitations … Read More

Repeatability and Reproducibility: Whose Problem is it Anyway?

Perhaps it’s a cliché, but today’s systems are becoming more and more complex, and intermittent problems more and more frequent. Repeatability and reproducibility have become major issues. The good news is, repeatability and sanity can be restored. RF Recorders Bring Repeatability and Sanity Back to the Table Have you found yourself asking how your team can fix an issue that … Read More

About those Specs…

It’s easy to write specs on a datasheet. Product engineers might feel a little queasy about some of the specs claimed on their own product’s datasheet, but marketing and sales folks almost never do.  Unfortunately, when it comes to real-world RF performance, there often are no real specs or benchmarks in the datasheets–just unsubstantiated claims. Whose device or product can … Read More

Avoid an Avalanche of Regression Test Costs

Sometimes the tiniest tweak can trigger an avalanche of regression test costs. It may be very tempting to upgrade to the latest technology from a vendor or the latest algorithm from the PhD’s in the signal processing group. But what’s the risk of that upgrade vs. the actual benefit? Do you dare push forward with that upgrade without commissioning a … Read More

Capture the Moment of Truth with an RF Recorder

Field tests are the moment of truth. Testing can reveal answers to crucial questions. Did we successfully transport the bits from the input of the transmitter to the output of the receiver? What is the probability that the bits are error-free? What happens when it rains? What if a plane flies through the propagation path? What about atmospheric ducting? What … Read More