Best LinkedIn Groups for PCB Enthusiasts – 2010
I am so excited to see how many people have joined various groups in the last year! Last April I compiled a list of the best LinkedIn groups for printed circuit board professionals and enthusiasts. Many changes have occurred since then, with the addition of new groups and the demise of others. Below is my take on the best groups for 2010. I also want to point out a few groups I find to be great concepts, but which have yet to find the type of traffic necessary to sustain them. Hopefully you will be encouraged to check them out and contribute regularly.
Here we go…
Electrical/Electronics and Computer Development Engineers Group (2,789 April ’09- 5,796 Members Now)
This is the largest technical group I was a part of last year. It is a dynamic group, and very active. However, the content tends to be a little bit more generic, and lacks the technical specificity found within the smaller groups formed for topical discussions. That being said, I really appreciate that there is always something new whenever you visit, and there is a large, diverse audience to whom you can field discussion questions, share news articles, and work on your networking skills.
EMS Insider (Electronics Manufacturing Services (2,663 April ’09- 5,815 Members Now)
EMS Insider falls into the same category of LinkedIn group as the EECDE group above. More general discussion on larger, less specific, and often marketing/manufacturing oriented topics. This is a great group to be a part of so that you have messaging rights to people within the industry.
PCB Forum (1,133 Members Now)
The PCB Forum group is a mid sized group and falls right in the middle of everything. Decent membership, good conversation, relevant news, etc. If you’re not a part of this group, you ought to be.
Printed Circuit Board Technologies and Solutions (330 Members April ’09- 930 Members Now)
Same thoughts as the PCB Forum above.
PCB Designers and PCB Designers Group (423 Members and 378 Members respectively)
These two groups cater to the PCB Designer, as is clear by their titles. PCB Designers is the more robust and put together group, although PCB Designers Group still has provided some valuable activity for me in the news section whenever I have posted a link. There is a discussion thread about combining the two groups… and whether that happened or not, I am not sure. I would speculate that a majority of the members are overlapping members. However, these are my two favorite groups!!…. be sure to check them out and join. I see them growing tremendously in the next year.
VLSI (2,337 Members April ’09- 4,233 Now)
This group has grown a lot, but still has that feel of being subsidized by a few key contributors rather than it being a lively, dynamic community.
IPC – Association Connecting Electronics Industries
The IPC group is a great resource for the PCB Professional. Although it is not updated or contributed to as often as many other groups, it is relatively free of junk postings and distractions. I really appreciate the IPC and their efforts to provide resources; and supporting their LinkedIn group is a great way to show some support.
These groups have great potential and I see them growing tremendously in the near future… however, that’s up to all of you. With a little love and involvement, I see these topic/technology specific groups growing into very informative communities. Some have very few members, and great content, while others have a good number of members, but need more applicable content.
Flex Circuit (42 Members April ’09- 172 Members Now)
PCB/BGA Rework and Repair (103 Members Now)
Unexplainable PCB Quality Issues (151 Members Now)
PCB HDI – Next Generation (124 Members Now)
Signal Integrity Engineering (1,184 Members Now)
RF/Analog/Mixed signal circuit design & product/test engineering (883 Members Now)
RFID/AIDC Technology (1,818 Members Now)