Welcome to a new era of Future Fab International – the new digital editions.
We have listened to our readers and our customers and evolved a business model that was almost breaking (note how thin most industry pubs have become or the fact that some of your old favorites no longer exist), into a model that can change with our readers and customers, while fulfilling their needs.
The publishers of Future Fab International (FFI) – Mazik Media Inc. – envision a new reality where business-to-business communication is more versatile for the reader and cost-effective for those that make the magazine possible: the advertisers. Our acceptance of a new digital magazine platform has already seen us launch Future Fab International’s sister magazine – Fab Engineering & Operations (FEO) – to address the completely ignored mainstream semiconductor segment, and now will allow Future Fab International to become the magazine we always dreamed it could be: the unifier of the Design, Fab and Packaging segments. No longer will these codependent segments be separated; Future Fab will instead cover technologies throughout the entire process. This approach will allow the numerous issues that affect all three segments to be covered more effectively then ever before, as the process of reintegration takes hold and these communities work in ever-closer proximity, further blurring the traditional barriers between the disciplines.
The world is becoming a digital domain through consumer products, the further proliferation of the Internet and the need to use these technologies to address the needs of society. Paper, for all its tactility and prestige, is not the best method of communicating with an industry that is as geographically spread as it is diverse – one that has changed the concept of communication itself. The semiconductor industry has shown that clinging to old ways and habits is the path to obsolescence, so why should a member of the media community behave any differently? Beginning with Future Fab and FEO, Mazik Media will usher in a new era in business magazines, as we plan to spin out a variety of similar magazines from the same platform.
We’d like to thank all those that read, supported and contributed to the biannual print versions of Future Fab International, and hope that you embrace this evolution of the best technical journal in the cutting-edge semiconductor space.
The Future Fab Team
The book was published in the U.K. from 1996 to 2003 when it left the offices of its founding company (Montgomery Research Europe Limited) and was folded into the parent company Montgomery Research Inc. based in San Francisco. In 2002, the Future Fab website was founded and has since served as a technical library for all of our content, dating back to January 2000 (edition 8). As soon as a new edition was published, all of the content was submitted to the site, providing an invaluable resource to those who received the book and to those who weren't a "qualified" recipient.
In 2005, the Future Fab team created a new home at Mazik Media Inc. with a view to developing the brand and expanding the potential of the Future Fab concept, and after an extensive period of research & development, took the brave step of becoming the semiconductor industry's first exclusively digital publisher with the 2008 launch of the 24th Edition of Future Fab International – the first magazine to reunite the fragmented Design/Fab/Packaging sectors.
Having more in common with a technical conference, the content-generation model works in a very different manner than traditional trade publications. There are no journalists or in-house editors originating content, there is no news or commentary, just 100 percent invited technical papers with some viewpoints from the editorial board as introductions to the sections. Unlike many trade publications that have editorial “advisory boards” and an editor-in-chief who controls the content, Future Fab’s content direction comes from the guidance and suggestions of our editorial board, with whom we liaise on every edition. In this manner, the reader sees the views of the manufacturing industry itself instead of an outsider's analysis.
A New Era
From the outset, one of Future Fab’s chief aims was to unite the front end (FEOL/BEOL) fabs with the back end (final manufacturing) packaging facilities. We were advised long ago that these two would become closer and closer as time progressed and so separating them would be unwise, guidance that proved true. We were the first publication to do so, starting a trend that is now commonplace (either merged magazines or front-end magazines with a section on packaging and test). To further this reach in 2003, we also opened a Design for Manufacturing (DFM) section in the book, again under the editorial panel’s guidance, and became the first nondesign-focused publication to continually look at the field and its effects on manufacturing, another trend that has been repeated throughout the industry. Now as the semiconductor industry moves further into a manufacturing reality beyond classical scaling, a new need has arisen: virtual reintegration. In the nanometer manufacturing era, design, fab and packaging technologies are becoming increasingly interdependent; Design for Manufacturing (DFM), Design for Yield (DFY), Design for Test (DFT), Wafer-Level Packaging, Through Silicon Vias & Vertical Integration are all set to become more and more prevalent, but there is no magazine that can cope with issues across the space. Not until Future Fab International’s digital editions. Now there is one magazine that all disciplines can contribute to and all can take technical information from, with no limit on who can subscribe and a flexible digital platform that is only in the beginnings of realizing its potential. Welcome to our new era.