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SOIC & SOT, the Microchips

A librarian once told me that if you wanted to get to know the fundamentals of a subject, find a children’s book and start there.  So when a friend told me at the EOS/ESD symposium that there was a children’s book about microchips, I went to Amazon and bought Soic & Sot, the Microchips right away.

Written by Jeffrey C. Dunnihoo, this children’s book tells the charming story of our titular heroes’ earliest awakening. With youth interest in robotics, technology, and IoT, it is exciting to see a professional from the electronics industry recognize that interest in electronics extends beyond our own manufacturing community.

In this clever tale, the microchips make their way through manufacturing, and we share in their experience of loneliness, belonging, and first encounter of electricity (SPOILER: it was tingly).  Although there may be no intentional deep message in the book, by side stepping the design and mechanic fundamentals of “how microchips work”, this book is an endearing existential journey where SOIC and SOT go from living an isolated existence to finding their purpose.

Written simply and illustrated brightly with drawings by Simona M. Ceccarelli, the sweetness is in the details.   It is easy to imagine a parent using this book as a tool to explain what they do at work. But for older kids, like me, there are opportunities for additional exploration since the author has strategically placed QR codes throughout the book.  When scanned, the QR code links to definitions, videos and industrial illustrations that allow for deeper insight and an adventure of our own.

With over 30 years of experience as an electrical engineer in the semi-conductor and system development field, Dunnihoo has also co-authored many research papers including, System Level ESD Co-Design.  The intention of the author for this project was to write a book to give children an understanding of how electronic toys and tablets work, so that children not only play with devices, “but experience the adventure of what goes on inside.”

SOIC & SOT, the Microchips is informational as well as enjoyable. From the author’s website, I see that this concept will becomes a series, so we can continue to learn more about the journey of semiconductors and the greater world of electronics.

For more information about the author and the book, go to: soicnsot.pragma

This is a review of the book SOIC & SOT, The Microchips, by Jeffrey C. Dunnihoo, 2018, first edition, 20 pages, illustrated by Simona M. Ceccarelli with QR codes, $7.95, ISBN 9781732283619  Pragma Design, Inc., Bertram, Texas, USA

Reviewed by Mary Kay Botkins, ACL, Inc., marykay@aclstaticide.com