I am an electrical engineer who has a passion for using software to solve real life problems that musicians have also being a concert pianist.
I studied music all my life and went to Eastman School of Music and the University of Notre Dame to finally achieve a Masters in Music. The highlight of my childhood musical activity was performing a debut concert at 14 in NYC at what was then called Carnegie Recital Hall, now known as Weill Recital Hall.
My beginning in engineering was creating a home-brew computer that actually worked! Constructed from the power supply to the wooden frame and wiring to the keyboard. Everything was made by me and after months of work, I saw the four seven-segment LED numbers light up. I created an EPROM programmer to write programs for it. So my first experience in programming was in assembly language for the Z-80 microprocessor.
I then went back to school and got my Masters in Electrical Engineering at the University of Houston.
After graduating from the University of Houston, I went to work for AT&T Bell Labs in the field of digital signal processing. I learned about the Unix environment there and became involved in exploratory work to reduce the bandwidth of a signal by introducing intersymbol interference intentionally. I learned about a chip at Bell Labs called the Graph Search Machine. It was intended to be used in speech recognition but also had features that made it well suited for doing Viterbi decoding. I also got involved in using Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) coding.
I wanted to continue to get a Ph.D. in Engineering so I moved to Allentown and started working in the Computer Aided Design department and at the same time attended classes at Lehigh University. I created the user interface for their in-house analog simulator, ADVICE. I was also involved with the creation of its replacement, Celerity.
Bell Labs had a software program called STAGE. STAGE was an application generator generator. (Yes, two generators) An application generator generator is a program which creates an application generator. An Application generator is a program which creates a program. I was able to use this technology to create software for designers who wanted to control the simulator programatically but didn’t have the software skills to create the controlling software. When Cadence purchased the computer aided design department, I moved over to the Modem and Multimedia group where I learned about analog circuit design and became an analog IC designer who was now using the software I helped to create to develop chips.
As an analog designer, I created a new type of band-gap circuit and received a patent on this design. Much of my work was involved in taking existing designs and redesigning them for a smaller technology. At the time we were moving from 0.5 microns to 0.35 microns.
Ultimately I was layed off during the big crash in 2002 as the company tried to deal with the losses due to the market. I started to work for a new startup called Mesh Semiconductor.
More to come…