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Meet the Team Series: Jodi Juretich, CFO

Posted by Cimetrix on Jun 8, 2017 11:45:00 AM

JCimetrix-Jodi_Juretich_copy.jpgoin us as we meet the Leadership Team of Cimetrix in the second post in our “Meet the Team” series.

Jodi Juretich joined Cimetrix in May 2007 and was promoted to Chief Financial Officer in November 2008. She has over 15 years of experience in executive accounting management for private high-growth companies and 10 years of public accounting experience. Prior to joining Cimetrix, Jodi was Vice President of Finance for two venture funded private companies, General Manager for a subsidiary of Monster.com, and an Accounting Manager with a division of The Times Mirror Company (Los Angeles Times). She has played key roles in raising venture capital in start-up organizations and led Cimetrix in implementing and managing the new Sarbanes-Oxley compliance requirements. Jodi earned a bachelor's in Business Management from Westminster College. Juretich grew up in Titusville, Fl., where her father worked for NASA, but has been living in Utah for almost 20 years. She currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Utah Foster Care Foundation.

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What brought you to Cimetrix originally?

I moved to Salt Lake City in 1996 and I celebrated my 10-year anniversary with Cimetrix this year. It’s an interesting story of how I got connected with Cimetrix and proof that networking works! A local CFO consulting firm had my resume which they passed on to a local CPA firm, which happened to be Cimetrix’s CPA firm at the time. They passed my resume on to Cimetrix and the rest is history. I was attracted to Cimetrix because it was a small company and had strong leadership with heart and passion.

What's your favorite thing about working at Cimetrix?

Most definitely the people, without a doubt. Cimetrix’s core values include Integrity, defined as “Upholding the Highest Ethical Standards in Everything We do”. I could not work for a company where bad behavior or unethical practices were tolerated.

What do you think makes a good CFO?

A good CFO must be suspicious of everything and can’t be bamboozled by anyone, no matter the circumstances. I am responsible for making sure the books are clean, people are doing what they say they are doing and we are making decisions based on increasing shareholder value and not personal or “alternative” agendas.  I am proud to say that we have our financials audited by independent third-party auditors each year and this year, we did not have any audit adjustments. My peers in the finance world know that’s no simple accomplishment. I have an incredible accounting team and they are committed to maintaining solid internal controls to prove there is no monkey-business going on.

CFOs at smaller and mid-size companies often wear a lot of different hats, tell us about your experience with that.

I have worked for small companies for most my career and have had similar experiences at all: You must be agile as a CFO of a small company because there are not layers of people to delegate responsibilities to. You must recognize your own capacity in terms of work load and technical expertise and know when to ask for help. Establishing good relationships with third-party professionals as well as your own network is vital. No one knows everything and you must be prepared to call on those relationships when necessary.

Do you have a favorite quote?

“If you say you can, you will, if you say you can’t, you won’t.” I continue to be amazed at what we, as human beings, are capable of. During the mortgage crisis when businesses were closing right and left, including many of our clients, Cimetrix survived. A business must have grit to survive hard times and Cimetrix has lots of grit.

How do you deal with challenges that come up in your work life?

I like to reflect on the Basic Principles, which I learned from a wonderful employer a long time ago.  

    • Focus on the situation, issue, or behavior, not on the person.
    • Maintain the self-confidence and self-esteem of others.
    • Maintain constructive relationships.
    • Take the initiative to make things better.
    • Lead by example.
    • Think beyond the moment.

What do you like to do in your free time?

Since 2012, I’ve been competing in triathlons, completing 3 half Ironman’s and 2 full Ironman’s in the last 4 years. This year, I am committed to relaxing a little more, taking a few more vacations with my husband and son and work in my garden.

What's the best thing that's happened to you in your time working at Cimetrix?

The best thing that’s happened to me at Cimetrix is the professional growth, feeling that I make a difference and friendships made. Cimetrix is a great place to work.  

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Topics: Doing Business with Cimetrix, Working at Cimetrix, Cimetrix Culture

Meet the Team Series: Robert Reback, CEO

Posted by Cimetrix on May 24, 2017 4:27:00 PM

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Join us as we meet the Leadership Team of Cimetrix in this first post of our “Meet the Team” series

Bob Reback — has served as President and CEO of the company since June 2001. Bob joined Cimetrix as Vice President of Sales in January 1996, was promoted to Executive Vice President of Sales in January 1997, and became President on June 25, 2001.  Bob grew up in Wisconsin and is an enthusiastic Green Bay Packers fan. We talked to Bob about how he got started at Cimetrix, the makings of a good CEO, and the challenges of running a global business.

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What brought you to Cimetrix originally?

My background was in robotics and factory automation. I worked at Texas Instruments in the ‘80s when TI’s business was booming and had the opportunity to deploy leading robotics and factory automation technologies of that era. I became involved in the semiconductor industry in the mid-80s with an important project which was one of the first applications of clean-room robots and the SEMI Equipment Communications Standard (SECS) to fully automate a lithography bay. This led to additional factory automation projects with the world’s leading semiconductor manufacturers, including the first uses of the new Generic Equipment Model (GEM) standard. In the early ‘90s, I moved to California to work for FANUC Robotics, the world’s largest robot maker. While at FANUC Robotics, Cimetrix called and recruited me. Cimetrix had a unique concept for a PC-based open architecture robot controller, which had the potential to disrupt the growing robotics industry.

What’s your favorite thing about working at Cimetrix?

There are several things that get me really energized. The first is meeting with a client who is an enthusiastic reference for Cimetrix. Fortunately, these meetings now occur on a frequent basis, and have become our expectation. These meetings are very enjoyable and personally satisfying, as I get to hear wonderful stories about how Cimetrix team members worked hard and took extra care to help our clients. The second thing is seeing the individual professional development of the great people who work at Cimetrix. We invest a lot in building the Cimetrix culture, emphasizing continuous improvement, and establishing shared values. It is a joy to see Cimetrix employees grow in not only the skill sets of their craft, but also in their professional careers.

What do you think makes a good CEO?

Well, I believe there are a number of things necessary to be a good CEO. First, I believe the focus must be on creating long-term value and building a company that lasts. This means looking at “What is best for Cimetrix?” over the long term. You must consider the interests of shareholders, clients and employees, while also ensuring every decision reflects the Company values. I believe the values and culture of the company start at the top. The CEO must personally possess the values he or she wants in the company, and demonstrate those values by example. They can’t just appear on a poster on the breakroom wall - you’ve got to really live and breathe them. They should be communicated and celebrated regularly, and there must be consequences for those whose actions do not reflect the company’s values.

Second, being a good CEO means being a good teacher who is able to listen, understand, empathize, and mentor. To do this, the CEO must be secure in his position - slow to blame others for problems, and quick to give credit to others when good things happen.

In addition, I believe the CEO must have passion and perseverance in the business. You never know what challenges may arise, and the CEO must be ready and able to lead the team in overcoming whatever obstacles the world may throw at us. It’s important for the CEO to have passion in order to articulate and reach alignment on the vision for the company, because you need people to be excited and energized about their role in fulfilling that vision.

Do you have a favorite quote?

People at Cimetrix know I read a lot of biographies, and can pull out quotes for almost any occasion. If I had to choose one favorite, I would go with the classic Vince Lombardi, “The will to win is not nearly so important as the will to prepare to win.”

How do you deal with challenges that come up in your work life?

First I refresh my memory and review what were the real goals and objectives we were trying to achieve. Then I try to understand the possible options, how much time we have to make a decision, and whether or not we have time to gather more data. We also always check to ensure that any decision reflects our company values, and discard options that might not reflect them.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I love to read on a wide variety of topics, especially history and biographies. I believe in doing some physical exercise on a daily basis, which might be running, biking, golfing, or skiing. I’ve also developed an interest in mindfulness and meditation which has led to some formal classes, retreats, and a regular yoga practice.

What’s the best thing that’s happened to you in your time working at Cimetrix?

Without a doubt, it would have to be all the wonderful people I’ve come to know, which includes clients, shareholders and employees. It also gives me genuine pleasure to see the company grow, and to work with satisfied clients and the truly great team of people we have here at Cimetrix. We’ve invested a lot in continually improving our software products, and know our clients can use our products to achieve success in their projects. We’re also seeing the financial rewards that come with that growth, using our profits to invest in some new products and markets to support that growth over the long term. It’s exciting for me to consider what’s possible in the next phase of our evolution as a company. We have a clear vision for how we can grow our markets, expand our product offerings, add more value for our clients, and do all that in a way that provides a good return to our shareholders. 

Finally, we know you travel quite a bit with your job. What have you learned from your travels?

For the past 20 years, Cimetrix has developed a client base across the US, Europe and Japan. This has provided many opportunities to travel to semiconductor regions in the US, such as the Bay Area, Portland, Phoenix, Austin, Boston and many other cities. We have clients in almost every European country, each with its own culture and work habits. Japan was the first Asian country in which we developed a meaningful client base. Japan requires a lot of patience as it has a unique culture, but once you establish a solid reputation and client base, it is a great place to do business.

Recently we’ve been developing business opportunities in Taiwan, Korea, China and southeast Asia. It has been fascinating to recruit staff and open offices in these areas, as each country has its unique ways of doing business. Cimetrix has become a truly international company with a diverse group of employees, as we now have employees from many different countries.

If I had to summarize what I’ve learned, it is that even though we have employees and clients from a wide range of backgrounds and perspectives, we also share many similarities. People want to be treated with respect, they want to be appreciated for their contributions, they want to be part of a team in which they take pride, and everyone wants to provide a good living for their family. I am convinced we can build a great company with employees from many different backgrounds while also having a shared Cimetrix culture and set of values.

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Thanks Bob for a great interview!

Topics: Doing Business with Cimetrix, Working at Cimetrix, Cimetrix Culture

President's Letter to our Cimetrix Community

Posted by Robert H. Reback: President and Chief Executive Officer on Feb 2, 2017 11:30:00 AM

To the Cimetrix community of clients, partners, shareholders and employees,

Cimetrix had another year of solid progress during 2016. Financial results were in-line with expectations, as Cimetrix continued to achieve profitability every quarter with full-year revenue in the $6M to $7M range.

Our key highlights include:

  • Cimetrix continued to enhance its reputation for product quality and the highest levels of customer support in the industry, receiving consistently excellent feedback from our client base.

  • Cimetrix continued to invest in building great products with new releases of all our product lines. Substantial improvements were made in both new features and internal testing that will benefit our clients for many years. 

  • Cimetrix gained additional “design wins” for its products in North America, Europe and Japan, where the company has an established presence. In addition, Cimetrix won important new clients in China and Korea. 

  • Cimetrix strengthened its organization as we added a number of new employees in business development, software engineering and technical support functions. The Company continued to invest in employee development, education and continuous improvement. We believe the concepts and training we’ve received in lean and agile processes will enable Cimetrix to build better products and more efficiently provide our clients with the highest levels of service. 

  • Cimetrix made a number of key investments that we believe will lead to future long-term growth. We strengthened our local sales and technical support in a number of Asian countries. We developed a number of new product prototypes in collaboration with key clients leading to the introduction of an exciting new Cimetrix product in 2016. Several other new products are in development and have the potential to significantly expand our markets.

Cimetrix also held its first shareholder meeting since going private in late 2014, which provided a forum to explain to shareholders why the Company took that important step, the progress we’ve made since going private, and our future plans. As a result of generating positive cash flow from operations, Cimetrix was able to continue providing liquidity for shareholders that contacted the Company. Prior to going private, the Company had over 4.5M shares outstanding, adjusted for stock splits. As of December 31, 2016, the Company had fewer than 3.9M shares outstanding. This means that every current shareholder’s ownership percentage has increased by over 15%.

Going Forward

Going forward, industry analysts predict an increase in semiconductor capital equipment spending for 2017. In addition, we are seeing increased traction for the relatively new SEMI Standards for Equipment Data Acquisition (EDA), also known as Interface A. We believe these trends will enable us to achieve short-term incremental increases in revenue that support continued operations on a profitable basis and investments in new products and markets that will lead to longer-term step function increases in revenue.

We will continue to focus on satisfying our worldwide base of clients, improving our efficiencies and effectiveness, and executing our plan to expand the markets for Cimetrix products for long-term growth.

From all of us at Cimetrix, we thank our clients for the trust they have placed in our products and our team. We also thank our shareholders for their patience and support. 

Sincerely,

Robert H. Reback
President and Chief Executive Officer

Topics: Partners, Doing Business with Cimetrix, Working at Cimetrix, Cimetrix Culture, Announcements, Investor News

Seminar to Prepare South Korean Companies for Samsung EDA Pilot Hosted in Suwon City, South Korea

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On March 30, 2016, Linkgenesis and Cimetrix hosted an Equipment Data Acquisition (EDA) standards seminar in Suwon City, South Korea to introduce equipment suppliers, sub fab component suppliers and system integrators to the concepts, history and best practices involving the SEMI EDA standards, also known as Interface A. The seminar was in response to Samsung’s EDA pilot targeted for Line 17 in Hwaseong with further rollout in Pyeoungtaek. While Interface A is being adopted in the US, Europe, Japan, and Taiwan; this is the first usage in South Korea. Recognizing this, Linkgenesis used their strong contact base in the South Korean semiconductor industry to bring together the major fab suppliers to share knowledge about EDA and demonstrate how Linkgenesis and Cimetrix can help them meet Samsung’s requirements.

The agenda was:

  1. Introductions by Sungwoo Jung, CEO Linkgenesis and Eric Ko, Sales General Manager

  2. EDA SEMI Standards Overview by Inhyeok Paek, Managing Director Research and Development Center

  3. EDA Industry and Market Trends by Dave Faulkner, Cimetrix Executive Vice President

  4. Factory Use Cases for EDA by Brian Rubow, Cimetrix Director of Client Training and Support (and co-chair of SEMI North American DDA Task Force)

  5. Best Practices in EDA Implementations by Brian Rubow

  6. CIMPortal Plus Feature Overview by Brian Rubow

  7. Development Steps Using CIMPortal Plus by Mingyu Chung, Linkgenesis Principal Engineer

  8. Question and Answer Period

With over 70 attendees, the Q&A session was lively with many good questions and exchange of ideas. Action items and next steps have been established with the attendees as everyone involved is working toward helping the Samsung pilot be successful.


If you would like to learn more about the application of the SEMI EDA/Interface A standards, click here for 10 in-depth videos on EDA technology. You can also download a white paper on the SEMI EDA/Interface A standards here.

Topics: SEMI Standards, Interface A, EDA, Doing Business with Cimetrix

SEMICON China 2016 was the Largest Semiconductor Trade Show of the Last Five Years

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On March 15-17 in Shanghai, SEMI hosted its annual SEMICON China and PFD China, which was the world’s largest semiconductor trade show of the past five years. With an increase of 20% over last year, the show had more than 2,600 booths from companies based all over the world. Many theme pavilions at the exposition demonstrated the strength of the industry. In addition, the series of concurrent conferences and programs brought the global industry knowledge sharing to exhibitors and attendees alike.

Starting Tuesday morning, the Grand Opening Keynote was delivered by world-class industry leaders including Dr. Zhou Zixue—the Chairman of SMIC, Ding Wenwu—the President of China National IC Fund, along with the CEOs from TSMC, Applied Materials, Amkor Technology, TEL, STATS ChipPAC, and Lam Research. The presentation explored global business and technology trends, market opportunities, and shared the panel’s ideas supporting the development of China’s semiconductor industry.

The rapid rise of China’s semiconductor industry has been driven mainly by an increasing market and investments. Chinese companies and funds have been active in the recent cross-border merger and acquisition deals. On Wednesday at the “Tech Investment Forum – China 2016,” leaders of China’s IC Investment Fund and leading global investment institutions discussed investment hot-topics within the Chinese semiconductor industry.

Also on Wednesday, SEMICON hosted a “Build China IC Manufacturing Ecosystem” forum that discussed establishing a full integrated circuit (IC) manufacturing supply-chain and building manufacturing core competencies that are vital for China’s semiconductor industry. The forum included speakers from China and leading global companies from the IC design, manufacturing, equipment, and materials fields. A wide range of topics was  covered including innovation and cooperation in leading-edge frontend processes, advanced packaging technologies, eight-inch production line, and more.

Other concurrent technology sessions included “China Memory Strategic Forum,” “Technology Shape the Future – Senor Hub Solution for Wearable and IoT,” “LED China Conference 2016,” “Power Semiconductor Forum 2016,” “SEMI-JEDEC Mobile and IoT Technology Forum,” and “China Display Conference/ASID 2016.” These sessions illustrate how the Chinese semiconductor market is interested in exploring industrial developments, share its visions for the future, and to work cohesively to grow the industry within China.

This was the first year Cimetrix exhibited at SEMICON China. We were able to make some valuable connections, visit with existing customers, and establish that Chinese companies have a definite interest in our product lines as well as how we can help them find greater success. We featured our complete SECS/GEM and EDA product lines with in-booth demonstrations and presentations.

We have already made plans to attend next year’s show to further explore how we can fit into the expanding Chinese market. We are hopeful that China will open new possibilities for the continued growth of Cimetrix.

Topics: SEMI, Doing Business with Cimetrix, SEMICON

When Should I Upgrade My Cimetrix Product?

Posted by David Francis: Director of Product Management on Feb 11, 2016 3:39:46 PM

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We live in a world where cell phone upgrades have become a way of life. Some people upgrade every time a new phone is available so that they can have the latest, greatest features and gadgets. Others prefer to keep their old phone since they are familiar with how it works and are satisfied with the phone’s functionality. While others still may upgrade because they have encountered a problem with their current phone that either can’t be fixed or has been addressed in the new model.

There are similar reasons to upgrade to a new version of a Cimetrix product. Here are a few sample questions that will help an OEM determine when is the best time to do so:

  1. Is there an issue my customers are currently facing that has been addressed in the new version of the product?

Cimetrix works to fix customer-reported issues as well as issues found during internal testing. It is not possible to make these fixes in all previously released versions of the product, so they are made as a fix in the latest released version of the product. Upgrading to the latest version benefits the OEMs by providing fixes to issues they may have reported or, more often, to issues they haven’t seen but have been reported by other OEMs.

  1. Are there added features or capabilities in the new version of the product that will improve my ability to support my customers and/or allow me to provide new functionality to my customers?

Cimetrix strives to support our customers by providing high-quality software products. As new technologies emerge and as scenarios in which our products are used evolve, we discover new ways to provide additional benefits to our OEM customers. These new capabilities are made available in new releases of our products. These improvements can include things like enhanced logging and diagnostic capabilities, new utilities for managing configuration files, or new screens for making setup easier.

  1. Am I planning a new release of my equipment control software?

Like Cimetrix, OEMs are continually looking for ways to improve their equipment and provide new features and functionality to their customers. This means that they will periodically release new versions of their equipment that may contain new hardware and/or software functionality. This is an ideal time for OEMs to also upgrade their Cimetrix software so that their new platform can take advantage of the latest fixes and enhancements that are available.

This is by no means meant to be an exhaustive list of questions to be asked/answered when determining the right time to upgrade to a new version of a Cimetrix product, but it does give you an indication of the type of things that should factor into your decision-making process. Each new software release has a set of Release Notes that describe the software fixes and new features that have been added in that release. These Release Notes are there to help you make the best determination as to when to upgrade, so be sure to read them carefully. And, as always, the Cimetrix Support team is available to answer any questions and provide additional information if you should need it.

Topics: Doing Business with Cimetrix, Product Information

SEMICON Korea Proves to Be a Fruitful Business Opportunity for Cimetrix as it Moves into this New Market

Korea5.jpegKorea4.jpgKorea2.jpegKorea1.jpegKorea3.jpegCimetrix and our new distribution partner, Linkgenesis, participated in a joint booth at SEMICON Korea last week in Seoul. With over four exhibit halls located in the COEX Convention and Exhibition Center, SEMICON Korea is the largest SEMICON in terms of number of visitors—about 40,000—and included over 1,870 booths in 36,000 sq. meters of show space. The theme of the show was “Connect to Future, Market, People and Technology” with keynote speakers from leaders at Synopsys, Texas Instruments, and Audi. The show was co-located with LED Korea. Included in the schedule was also a meeting for the Information and Control Technical Committee, Korea Chapter, to work on SEMI standards.

Korea remains the second largest equipment market for the second year in a row, and represents the largest region of installed 300mm fab capacity in the world. This show has more equipment manufacturers, in my opinion, than most SEMICON shows. So, because of the show’s location, it made it an ideal opportunity for us to meet with our current worldwide equipment manufacturing customers who seemed to be present in every row, and to meet the growing list of Korean equipment manufacturers as they build volume and increase their expertise. We already have several customers in Korea and expect this number to grow over the next few years.

Our new partnership with Linkgenesis was founded on providing EDA/Interface A solutions in Korea; currently Samsung and Hynix are both looking at incorporating this technology into their manufacturing systems. As the world leader in EDA/Interface A, Cimetrix can provide superior expertise to make the adoption process efficient and successful. Linkgenesis already has business with most Korean equipment manufacturers, so, by combining forces, we bring strong local engineering support together with our world-class EDA solution, CIMPortal™ Plus.

To accelerate our penetration into Korea, we have hired Mr. Hwal Song (+82 (0) 10-5058-0895) as our Korean General Manager to accelerate our customer introductions and partnership with Linkgenesis. Song has a long history in the semiconductor software industry.

We met with several new potential customers during the show setting a strong foundation for our continued growth in the Korean market. We left the show feeling very positive about Cimetrix’ entry into Korea.

At the Information and Control Technical Committee meeting, David Francis, Director of Product Management, represented Cimetrix. In the meeting there was an introduction to work being done by SEMI Japan related to Role Based Access Control (RBAC); however, this effort is still under development by the Japan Task Force. The North America DDA Task Force is starting discussions about Freeze 3 of the EDA Standards. Tom Salmon, Vice President Global Member Services and Standards, introduced information about the SEMI Automation Technology Committee that is working on the Smart Manufacturing initiate in support of efforts coming out of Industrie 4.0 and Industrial Internet Consortium. There was also an information share on the status of efforts around standards for Recipe Management Systems that address some of the concerns with the existing standards such as Recipe and Parameter Management (RaP).

SEMICON Korea 2016 as a whole was a success for both Cimetrix and the Korean semiconductor industry. Seoul was a great backdrop for the show and we look forward to returning next year with greater market penetration and the chance to catch-up with even more clients.

To be contacted about Cimetrix' CIMPortal Plus or any of our products and/or services, please click here.

Topics: SEMI Standards, Doing Business with Cimetrix, SEMICON

Cimetrix Announces a Forward Stock Split: Promoting Incentives to Keep Our Smart and Talented Workforce

Posted by Jodi M. Juretich: Chief Financial Officer on Jan 21, 2016 12:56:00 PM

11746307754_3a5946020c.jpgWith unemployment rates at some of the lowest rates in 10 years, keeping good employees can be a challenge. Ownership in the company they work for is one benefit highly valued by many employees. We all want to be part of a growing business, make it successful, and know we will be rewarded for our hard work. Cimetrix wants to provide such ownership incentives to our employees and do it in such a way that is fair and motivating to the employees while being fiscally responsible to shareholders.

One of the impacts of the December 26, 2014 reverse stock split was the price per share value went up and number of shares went down. The pre-reverse stock split value went from $0.15 a share to a post-reverse stock split price of $1,500 a share (as of December 26, 2014). This reduction in shares and corresponding increase in share price made it fiscally impractical to use stock options as part of our incentive program moving forward. Therefore, the Cimetrix Board of Directors approved a transaction to perform a 1,000 to 1 forward split effective December 30, 2015.

The forward split transaction resulted in 3,928,000 shares outstanding as compared to the pre-forward split shares outstanding of 3,928 and decreased the share price by the same ratio. While the ownership position of all Shareholders remained the same pre and post forward-split, it adjusted the price per share to a much more manageable price for granting incentive stock options.

For Shareholders holding physical stock certificates, a letter of instruction from our Transfer Agent, Colonial Stock will be mailed out by February 1, 2016. Shareholders with stock in brokerage accounts should receive notification from their brokerage firm directly.

We believe this transaction will benefit both employees and shareholders by providing the right level of incentives to keep a smart and talented workforce.

Topics: Doing Business with Cimetrix, Investor News

Cimetrix Partners with Linkgenesis That Will Serve as the Distributor for Our CIMPortal Plus Software in Korea

Posted by Erick Ko: Linkgenesis on Jan 19, 2016 1:12:00 PM

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Last November Linkgenesis Corporation, based in Seoul, became the official Korean distributor of Cimetrix’ EDA/Interface A solution CIMPortal Plus.

This partnership was a perfect fit as we at Linkgenesis have been providing software products and development services in manufacturing information automation systems and the software testing area since 2001. In November of 2014, Linkgenesis merged with IT-Innovation, a communication software solution provider for semiconductor and LCD factories.

In cooperation with Cimetrix, Linkgenesis will be delivering the globally-proven EDA solution to Korean customers, and will also provide enhanced XGem/XGem300 GEM Driver harnessed with CIMPortal Plus so that customers using XGem/XGem300 can easily adapt their equipment to provide EDA capabilities. XGem/XGem300 GEM Driver is a Linkgenesis’ software driver supporting SEMI 300mm standards and is based on XCom SECS Driver that has been proven reliable for more than 200 customers. Linkgenesis’ software testing tool, MAT (Machine Auto Tester), has also been largely used by Korean mobile companies and automotive companies such as Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, and Hyundai automotive groups.

SEMI EDA/Interface A standards were originally established in 2006 with Freeze-I and then updated with Freeze-II in 2010, but Korean chipmakers have not actively adopted Interface A standards in their production processes. However this is beginning to change as Samsung Electronics released its plan to introduce Interface A on its pilot line last August and SK hynix also started discussion of introducing Interface A.

In addition, Samsung Electronics plans to build a new line at its Pyeongtaek, South Korea and SK hynix’ plants to increase its production line at Cheongju and Yicheon, South Korea. However, according to Gartner’s forecast, semiconductor equipment spending by Samsung Electronics and SK hynix are going to slightly decrease this year. Samsung Electronics will invest $11.4 billion, which is a 13.5% decrease from 2014, and SK hynix will invest $4.8 billion this year, which is a 10.6% decrease from 2014.

We believe this new partnership between Linkgenesis and Cimetrix will provide a great deal of advantages to Korean customers in this emerging market, and will promote the increased interest in EDA/Interface A technology for chip manufactures.

Korea_2016_Banner_416x61.gifLinkgenesis will be exhibiting at SEMICON Korea 2016, which will be held in Seoul on January 27-29. Please stop by our booth in Hall C #1739 to see our product line as well as Cimetrix’ CIMPortal Plus, and discover how our software brings the latest innovations to the semiconductor manufacturing industry.

Topics: Semiconductor Industry, Interface A, CIMPortal, Doing Business with Cimetrix

Software Versioning Help Sets Users' Expectations

Posted by David Francis: Director of Product Management on Jan 14, 2016 1:02:00 PM

There are times in life when a surprise is a good thing. Like when you get a box of chocolates. We all remember the line from the movie Forrest Gump, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.” When you install a new version of software however, surprises aren’t as enjoyable. With a new software release, customers need to be able to assess the effort and impact the new release will have on their current systems and procedures. Then they can evaluate whether the new features and functionality will be worth the effort to deploy the new software release. One way software companies can help communicate the impact a new software release may have on customers is by using a clearly defined release versioning procedure.

Change is good and software products that grow and mature over time, adding new features and eliminating unwanted behaviors, can remain healthy and viable over a long period of time. However, consistency and predictability are also important characteristics of good software products. So how do software companies balance the two seemingly competitive objectives?

Itunes.pngsemantic-versioning.pngMany software companies can do this is through the way they use software versioning. It is common for software companies to use a major.minor.patch.build software versioning scheme, for example iTunes 12.3.1. This type of software versioning allows the software company to communicate the scale and impact of the changes in the release to their customers. A change in the “major” release number indicates to customers that there are some significant changes in this release that may impact the way it interacts with the product. The customer will likely need to make code changes or procedural changes when upgrading to such a release. A change to the “minor” release number denotes that there are multiple changes in the release, but customers should see only minor, or possibly no changes, in the way they use the product. A minor release may include some small new features that could potentially require code changes if the customers wanted/needed those new features. A “patch” release is generally used to address a specific issue and should not change the customer experience with the software. The build number is most often provided to help the software company when researching a question or customer reported defect.

Software versioning provides a way to set expectations with the customer about what is in the release and how it might affect the way they use the product. It can help take the surprise out of the process of installing a new software release. Life may be “like a box of chocolates,” but software releases shouldn’t be.

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Topics: Semiconductor Industry, Interface A, CIMPortal, Doing Business with Cimetrix

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SEMI Standards

SECS/GEM

GEM 300

Interface A/EDA

PV2 (PVECI)