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Thread: Backup Strategy?

  1. #1
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    Backup Strategy?

    When I see the news about Portland and the States in general, I get the idea that Teensy could suddenly be lost without notice.
    Is there a backup strategy for such a case? A trustworthy person abroad who could jump in, in case of problems? (do not let me name the scenarios, possibilities are obvious)

    This would be important for a decision to embed Teensy into a commercial product!

    Me personally, because of the unknown situation and the instability in US, I would at the moment not depend a project completely on Teensy, because if Corona or the police or politics take out people of PJRC or their suppliers in US, the supply would stall and eventually come to an end.
    The same applies to all long-term deals with US companies.

    So my question may be a bit heretical or offending to some, but still I think it is better to ask questions before the disaster, to make prepared decisions based on facts instead of fears.

  2. #2
    Senior Member+ Frank B's Avatar
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    Basically, the (very) long term question is: China or USA parts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank B View Post
    Basically, the (very) long term question is: China or USA parts.
    I read it as price versus quality...

  4. #4
    Senior Member+ Frank B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saibot View Post
    I read it as price versus quality...
    Maybe yes, if you prefer low price.
    China produces a *lot* high quality parts - for higher prices. You have these parts in all your consumer electronics "assembled in usa".

    But it was meant a little different - just look at the USA foeign politics,desatrous handling of corona (look at the worldwide statistics; wow.. america is leading again..with deaths), America first.
    There is nothing that gives hope for people *outside* USA. China will win the game. For sure.
    Last edited by Frank B; 07-29-2020 at 08:41 PM.

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    Made in Europe

    quality, reliability, worth the price
    It would be super to have a licensed production in Europe, as a backup in case of orange problems, or to have an economic and safe supply for outside-US and secure and steady income for PJRC, win-win for all.

    Anyway better than China copycat, lousy quality or slavery work.

  6. #6
    Senior Member+ Frank B's Avatar
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    Yes, agreed. But - where is it, the european CPU? or even a crystal? capacitor? resistor?

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    NXP is based in Einhoven, Netherlands.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NXP_Semiconductors

  8. #8
    Senior Member+ Frank B's Avatar
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    Yes, the central.
    They produce their parts where? I don't know. Taiwan?

    Edit:
    Singapur + Shanghai

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    Yes but because you did not look after your great electronics companies - Grundig, Telefunken, Siemens. Dutch did not look after Philips. Brits lost Mullard...

    Edit
    But you you did make Julianne Werding even if in Essen...
    Last edited by Saibot; 07-29-2020 at 08:56 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member+ Frank B's Avatar
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    Haha.. Essen is OK now. I live 50km away.
    Juliane was great...but..part of the past, like Grundig and the others.

    p.s. Gianna Nannini (Italy) was better

    ..or Sinatras daughter Nancy

    Last edited by Frank B; 07-29-2020 at 09:23 PM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank B View Post
    Maybe yes, if you prefer low price.
    China produces a *lot* high quality parts - for higher prices. You have these parts in all your consumer electronics "assembled in usa".

    But it was meant a little different - just look at the USA foeign politics,desatrous handling of corona (look at the worldwide statistics; wow.. america is leading again..with deaths), America first.
    There is nothing that gives hope for people *outside* USA. China will win the game. For sure.
    Hopefully, this is just a short term embarrassment for the USA. In about 3 months we will have the start of regime change for the better. Then we will begin taking Covid seriously, treating our friends like, well, friends and oppressors appropriately. It won't happen over night - it will take time to undo the mess that the 4 year-old leaves behind. But, we will get there. After January, the national spectacle will be watching all the court proceedings and, hopefully, jail time for more than a few.

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    Haha.. Essen is OK now. I live 50km away.
    Juliane was great...but..part of the past, like Grundig and the others.

    p.s. Gianna Nannini (Italy) was better

    ..or Sinatras daughter Nancy

    Yes both Juliane and Nancy are still my favourites - I will check out the other one

  13. #13
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    While the language in this image is a bit strong, as someone who lives in the outskirts of the greater Portland area and personally knows some of the protesters, I can confirm it really does truthfully show the scope of the BLM protests in Portland, Oregon.

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    PJRC and the contract manufacturers who solder every Teensy and the printing company that makes the pinout cards are all located *far* outside of the downtown Portland area shown on this map.

    This morning news came out that Trump's goons will be withdrawing from Portland. It was both called a "phased" withdrawal and said that they would be gone by Thursday (tomorrow!) Plenty of strongly worded statements were given by the feds, so it's difficult to know if some are staying or they're just trying to save face.

    Either way, I can assure you the media coverage depicting all of Portland as a war zone is grossly exaggerated. The protests truly are happening in just a few city blocks downtown. The violent conflicts have almost always been only between midnight to 3am. I'm going to refrain from commenting on the politics. My only point here is sensational media coverage you may have seen depicting war-like chaos overcoming all of Portland is just not truthful.

    Like so many people, right now Robin & I are in the "wait to see" what happens with the November election. We're not going to make any major changes until the situation becomes clearer next year.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilB View Post
    After January, the national spectacle will be watching all the court proceedings and, hopefully, jail time for more than a few.
    Never tie your happiness to an uncontrollable externality. Instead, consider the words of Aurelius: "Think constantly [of...] how many tyrants [have died], after using their power over men's lives with monstrous insolence, as if they themselves were immortal." (Meditations 4:48)

    Or, the words of Shelley:

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    In the cosmic blink of an eye, the heart that fed is fed upon, or reduced to ash. Everything these strange creatures do will be reduced to ash as well, every betrayal and treason paid back infinitely and for all time. And then, the one fate they cannot bear to think of: to be utterly powerless, which haunts them far more than it would most people; to be mocked by those who saw through their masks, without recourse, until all memory of them and their works die, proving at the moment of their demise and for every moment over the next fifty trillion years, that they were never anything special, never "better" than anyone else, that the entire Universe laughs at their ridiculous egotism for the briefest moment before it grinds them to dust.

    Now. Suppose that PJRC is wiped out by the plague (highly unlikely), and that they have named no worthy successor (which I bet they have, perhaps that workshop in New York that everyone buys addressable LEDs from.) What is the thing that makes a Teensy anything more than the sum of some components you can easily get from Mouser, Digikey, or a hundred other places, on a PCB that is also easy to duplicate?

    Three concerns: Some code in the Teensy's EEPROM, the program that runs with your IDE when you flash the board, and a very healthy community of experts and novices from many disciplines who stand ready to contribute code and help each other.

    The first two concerns are just code, and they can be re-created. (Perhaps not compatibly with existing hardware, but it would enable the community to move forward with new hardware.) That this has not happened at scale is because of the third concern. Fly-by-night idea-stealers cannot compete with the community that PJRC has carefully nurtured. The people at PJRC care about the quality of their work. The idea-stealers are neurologically incapable of understanding what that pride feels like, and they can never duplicate it. They can never be loyal to their customers, so their treatment of any community can never be anything but a dim, hollow imitation of what they see PJRC doing.

    I think that's why PJRC is still here.

    If they were suddenly not still here, and there was no obvious successor, you'd see it happening right on these forums: experienced members would come together and figure out how to replicate the EEPROM and IDE code. It might not be directly compatible with existing hardware, but it would open the way for new hardware to be developed that plays well with the Arduino toolchain. The community would go on. There would be newer and better hardware.

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    No offense but I don't understand why people spend their time thinking about worst case disasters. And my happiness is not predicated on an election outcome. In fact, I'll be pretty happy no matter what happens because I am basically a happy person. But I do relish the image of the entire country saying to the idiot "You're fired!". How apropos.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PhilB View Post
    No offense but I don't understand why people spend their time thinking about worst case disasters. And my happiness is not predicated on an election outcome. In fact, I'll be pretty happy no matter what happens because I am basically a happy person. But I do relish the image of the entire country saying to the idiot "You're fired!". How apropos.
    Plan for the worst, hope for the best. That way you should always win..win.

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    Sure but only if there is a reasonable plan you can have. Too many people natter about things they can't plan for or things where the cost of planning/prepping is way too high. As long as we are at it, people also raise perceived problems to a much higher level than reality dictates. As was pointed out earlier, Portland is not a lawless wasteland even though some news coverage might have you believe that.

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    That's exactly right. There is a short film (about 22 minutes) on YouTube called "Don't Be A Sucker." It's from 1947, but it's eerily relevant today. We are seeing the same con. Only the names of the boogeymen have changed.

  19. #19
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    I've been responsible for sourcing parts for optical measurement devices for long years. I'd say you seldom get complex parts/modules with less risk than those Teensies. Schematics is open source, firmware is open source. IIRC, there is even a reference board design available. So, if PJRC is suddenly vanishing you should be up and running with your own boards in say half a year. They might be not as teensy as the original boards but we are talking about a disaster recovery plan. -> If I needed to manage that risk, I'd simply buy enough boards to bridge that gap. Since I probably wouldn't have very high volume (otherwise I wouldn't use prototype boards in the first place) the cost for managing that risk should be overseeable.

    Just my thoughts of course...

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    luni's advice to stock so as to bridge the gap is a good one, altho you have probably waited too long.
    i have been designing hardware since 1975 and in the old days you could actually avoid single source
    parts. then starting about 1977 and the spreading use of lsi the waters became murky. since a design
    i did in late 77 that had an embedded microprocessor, it got harder and harder to not have ANY single
    source parts in a design. by about 2000 it was real hard, and by 2010 if you did it then the product
    often suffered for it. i think today you should make some effort to minimize single source parts, set
    your margins so you can afford to stock ahead on those all the time, and at the FIRST hint of trouble
    stock even further ahead.

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