Joe Zott's blog

Joe Zott

As an engineer who spent over 30 years in the Silicon Valley you are probably not surprised that I have a lot of opinions about technology and the industry. I have seen lots of technical and business successes and failures. The last couple of years I have started blogging, but not with any consistency. I am going to try to do better.


But maybe I need to clean up my lab first.

Factory test and calibration

A common need in any embedded product development project is engineering development, test, and calibration applications. Laser beam scanning products support software needs are even greater than most developments as mirror and laser calibration are essential to safe high performance operation.

Embedded Command Line with Scripting

While not currently a common development approach ZedTech has used a command line / device scripting approach based on the Forth programming language.


I have been doing a lot of reading and thinking on EVs and the future of transportation. Perhaps some of my observations will be useful to others. (still draft, but wanted to get out there)

Cost of intelligence

An interesting question is the relative cost of biological and non-biological intelligence. Starting with the question on how expensive is non-biological intelligence.

Projection Augmented Reality

I worked on developing, mnaufacturing, and distributing vein visualization tools for over 12 years. So I have talked about the technology a lot. These product are an excellent example of projection augmented reality.

While the story sounds simple, “Having a hard time finding a vein? Use a simple vein visualization tool to help you visualize the veins in your arm.”, it is not as simple as it sounds.

Enhanced Reality Manifesto

The immersive experience market continues to evolve with the search for revenue and as the market grows. As the different participating companies search for differentiation and sales, they have come up with a variety of terms to describe the market that they are addressing

5nm product PCBA

5nm product PCBA

Roaring 20's for Semiconductor Technology?

With the recent technology, fab, and government funding announcements what do the 2020’s represent for the advance process semiconductor industry?

Clearly a transition is occurring. Today this industry has 3 fab players: TSMC, Samsung, and Intel and a large infrastructure of innovators and suppliers.

Semiconductor process node availability at the most advanced process node has been flattening for a decade. Yet technology innovations, product demands (and ability to pay for them), and government supported capex programs all combine for the technology growth to continue.

Computer languages

The post I did on the R language made me think about the computer languages that I have liked and those that I haven’t. Thought it might be worthwhile to review what I continue to use.

In defense of the R language

In a meeting I was in yesterday someone apologized for only knowing the R language. While not a classical “great” programming language I explained that it can serve many useful and practical purposes and that there is no reason why one should be apologetic about it as it has some many useful and practical applications.

I thought it might be useful to share some of the applications that I have professionally used R for:

Visualization Latency

I have built a number of visualization products and like other augmented reality products latency is a key design characteristic.

History of Near IR Vein Visualization

Having built a series of vein visualization devices for AccuVein (AV300/AV400/AV500) I thought it would be interesting to share the history of NIR vein visualization. As technologists we usually think we are living in and creating things that are completely new. I thought the story was a good reminder that while we think we are creating new things that we stand on the shoulders of others and that others have gone this way before. Many of the ideas that we are working on have been around for a very long time.

I shared a bit of this story when I received the SPIE Prism award for best medical device of the year for the AccuVein AV400 in 2014. SPIE is the premier international professional society for optics and photonics, so I was very honored to receive this award.

Vein visualization has been around for a long time. It will be interesting to see where it goes in the future.

Engineering site relaunches

A couple years ago I decided to start blogging and ended up not being as committed to it as I intended. Not waiting for the new year and restarting this activity.