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Would You Read a High-Tech Graphic Novel Created by a Fellow Engineer?

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Keysight enters the long tradition of using comic books or graphic novels to entertain and educate engineers.

Everyone knows the escapades of Scott Adams “Dilbert” through his comic strip adventures. Dilbert is an engineer stuck in a dead-end job in corporate America. But it’s not a very technically oriented comic, especially since it’s a daily strip covered chiefly in newspapers. To tell a story in any detail requires a graphic novel, which has more space to delve into the major elements of a good story including a plot, character development, and technical explanations.

In the past, engineering-focused comic books – or rather graphic novels - have fallen into two basic categories; 1) technical, and 2) marketing. Both used the comic book format to deliver helpful information to engineers using the modern medium of the graphic novel. An example of the former is the anime-styled series of books, such as “The Manga Guide to Microprocessors.”

The second category is those with technical but also marketing and business messages. One great example was the “Xena,” IPextreme’s warrior princess. She fought against the shelving of valuable intellectual property (IP) design blocks by companies that lacked the capability or interest to catalog, document, and make their IP available to other members of their design teams. Xena championed the cause of IP reuse to help save fabless EDA tool vendors millions of dollars and hours of design iterations. Oh, and the reused IP could be licensed to outside companies for a tidy profit.

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TECC Force Comic

Today there is a new entry into this world of engineering comic books: Keysight Technologies “TECC Force.” This great little comic book series debuted last month. It combines technical intrigue with just a hint of a marketing message. Best of all, it's written by an engineer, Cheryl Ajluni, Director, Electronic Industrial Solutions Group and Software Solutions at Keysight Technologies.

Here’s the story pitch: “Technology is rapidly advancing, opening the door to villainous characters determined to achieve world domination at any cost. Wherever technological chaos breaks out around the world, Team TECC Force is on the case, with nothing but their wits, cunning, and a whole lot of Keysight tech to help save the day and, in the process, humankind. Join Team TECC Force on their adventures and their quest to save the world, one precision measurement at a time.”

John Blyler is a Design News senior editor, covering the electronics and advanced manufacturing spaces. With a BS in Engineering Physics and an MS in Electrical Engineering, he has years of hardware-software-network systems experience as an editor and engineer within the advanced manufacturing, IoT and semiconductor industries. John has co-authored books related to system engineering and electronics for IEEE, Wiley, and Elsevier.

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