Chief Systems Architect
Director of Engineering
Software Engineer Hardware
Instrumentation Engineer Audio/Video
Designer Inventor Algorithm
Project Manager Team
"Increasing competitive effectiveness through
development processes and technology strategies
that support and
enhance business and organizational objectives."
accomplished technology thought leader
polymath with a proven record
of unmitigated innovation
Over fifteen years’ experience in
platform design and engineering project
management; an energetic,
versatile team leader who knows
the importance of planning
and preparation in the
consistent delivery of high quality,
reliable, and cost-effective
applied physics, applied mathematics, and
electronic engineering theory
and practice, from product concept to manufacture.
highly motivated, focused,
A team player
who encourages team synergy through cooperative interaction
(there is no "I" in team).
Knows the value of questions such as,
Why? Why not? What if?
in the creative process.
aptitude. Naturally inquisitive.
depth and multidisciplinary breadth of knowledge
drive the identification, selection, and implementation of
systems and architectures in support of business and
organizational objectives. Has a
demonstrated ability to see trends and connections
that others miss, and who challenges
assumptions and embraces positive change.
comfortable with outside-the-box
at associative thinking and
abstract logical reasoning, to
solve complex systems problems
despite incomplete or ambiguous definition.
Quickly translates product
requirements into feasible system architectures and technology
firm believer in DWYSYWD (do what you said you will do).
technology, hardware engineering and
engineering knowledge resource who brings a
vision supported by
well-honed analytical skills, plus breadth and depth of
knowledge across multiple disciplines; who has a documented trail of product
able to apply advanced concepts to strategic technology
management and development decisions.
high-end all-digital home theater, and
of a new
infrared remote control repeater technology.
engineering design and product experience has given me a good
idea of what works, and how to
avoid common risk factors,
covering the gamut of analog, high-speed digital, mixed signal
circuitry and instrumentation systems, and also real-time
DSP algorithms, RF and baseband signals and systems (particular
interests). Maintains technology roadmaps.
professional development. Member of IEEE and AES. Experienced
presenter, manager, educator, and mentor.
In my early
years as a physicist and biomedical engineer, I
worked with some of the top people in these fields. During
this time I
completed a Masters degree in applied physics, with
specialization in digital
signal processing. Later, while working as an instructor of electronic
engineering, I began a
collaboration with CERN physicist and fellow audiophile John
Hagelin. This led to the formation of a small high-end audio company
Enlightened Audio Designs (EAD), which
was formed on the premise that something was wrong with the
conventional approach to analog-to-digital conversion in the
digital audio compact disc system. By combining our physics and engineering expertise,
John and I developed a new approach to the design of the
critical current-to-voltage converter stage, which we called
AccuLinear. The AccuLinear circuitry revised the conventional
wisdom about digital audio quality by demonstrating the
necessity of using high-gain, video-speed, devices to properly
integrate the audio staircase current waveform. AccuLinear
functioned by using an op amp with i) a sufficiently high open
loop gain, ≈ 65536, to give good low frequency accuracy,
and ii) a high enough gain bandwidth product, 40 MHz, for fast
linear settling. These techniques and others ensured accuracy
for large and small signals alike, whether low frequency or
high, or of a transient nature, largely preventing non-linear
settling behavior and consequent transient intermodulation
distortion. Transient intermodulation distortion is thought to
be the major cause of dissatisfaction with digital audio
compared to analog sources. The AccuLinear design innovation was
applied to dozens of innovative and
award-winning audio EAD products.
later, when the high-end audio boom was beginning to
flatten, I persuaded my business partners that digital home
theater, based on Dolby Laboratories'
up-coming 5.1-channel AC-3 technology, was where we needed to
be. Building on my vision of the architecture for this product,
which was named TheaterMaster, I became project manager, leading
a team of five. With development work proceeding apace, we successfully exhibited a prototype in June 1994 at summer CES in
Chicago. Six months later at winter CES, January 1995, we showed
off our production
version of the TheaterMaster, the world's first consumer
5.1-channel surround sound processor. In the six-to-nine month window of opportunity before there was
any competition, we sold 800 pieces. Working initially in the
role of Director of Engineering, as the EAD brand evolved, I was
promoted to VP of Engineering, in which role I developed a new,
more advanced, line of home theater audio processors (the
Signature/Ovation/Encore TheaterMasters). When EAD transitioned
in 2000 to a successor company known as Thunder Lake Audio, I
was appointed as its CTO. Hit hard by the aftermath of the 9/11
events in 2001, Thunder Lake was purchased by an Oregon company,
Tara Labs, who created a small company, Alpha Digital
Technologies, to develop new products under the EAD brand, with
me on board as Chief Engineer. One of my product designs at
Alpha Digital was the DVDMaster 8000 Pro, a unique DVD-Audio
player designed to appeal to audiophiles and videophiles alike.
In 2003, this product, which the first DVD-Audio player with
full 5.1-channel bass management, and which also used Silicon
Image 480p video line-doubler circuitry, won the coveted SGHT
Editors' Choice Platinum Award for best DVD player.
phase was with the Miami-based custom
whole-home audio company, Niles Audio, where as lead engineer I was tasked by vice president
Frank Sterns with getting a new whole-home audio system to market. As a result, the
project went from ailing and in danger
of being canceled, to becoming, in 2007, Niles biggest success story ever,
as well as the recipient of several major industry awards.
Promoted shortly after to Chief Architect of
Systems, I contributed to many other Niles products and
technology platforms, including a whole home digital audio
streaming device that plays Internet Radio, Pandora, Sirius-XM,
Rhapsody, and iTunes. Despite Niles' continuing brand success,
the housing downturn in 2008, together with the on-going
commoditization of whole home audio, and strong competition from
a strong new D.I.Y. wireless audio competitor, resulted in the loss of
independence and a downsizing of the company, culminating in the loss of nearly all of Niles'
engineering and technical team.
by the friendly nickname of "Professor" (a result of my
engineering instructor days), I stay current in the latest technologies, especially audio/video,
but also amateur radio and
music. In my spare time I tend to immerse myself in technology
and writing. However, for a healthy lifestyle balance and relaxation,
during weekends I
can often be found hiking with my wife, and photographing the
fauna and flora of southern California and/or Oregon.
Played a pivotal role
in bringing Niles Audio’s award-winning ICS multizone audio system to market,
increasing revenues by $25M in 2007
(a 50% increase), Niles’ best year
ever. I had been hired to lead the solution of myriad design problems
in this product that was over-budget, only partially
functional, & in danger of being
lead engineer & project manager
for the award-winning, critically-acclaimed TheaterMaster Classic (the world’s first consumer Dolby
Digital/DTS audio processor), demonstrated at CES 1995,
and shipped in February 1995, 6
months ahead of its rivals. All 5.1 modes, 2°
CinEQ, Hafler Matrix, Mono expander, 2°
bass, and AutoSetup mic. Lifetime revenues of
on 800 units.
Feb ’95, pp. 10, 80-, 81, 89; Audio (Ger.) Apr ’95, p.3, 142; Video
Apr ’95, p.52; Video May ’95, cover, p.38; USA
Today Jul 18, ’95, 6D; AV Interiors Jul ’95,
a cost-effective high-fidelity wideband IR repeater, patent application
US 2010/0258729 A1, suitable for the new high-density codes (Philips RC-MM, UEI XMP, etc.),
sustaining Niles’ $5M per year IR sales.
A new IR sensor based on this technology, the MS220, was
named a Finalist for the 2010 CEA Mark of Excellence
Architect & lead engineer
for 2nd-generation TheaterMaster, preventing competitive erosion of
$2.5M annual sales.
Launched Jan 1998:
Dual DSP, 4°
bass management, absolute speaker phase test, alphanumeric GUI.
Sept 2002: Reference Cinema 6.2/ Cinema 7.1 modes, new GUI &
custom DSP modes;
See Audio Nov ’98; Stereophile Guide
to Home Theater Dec ’98.
Architect & developer of the nationally & internationally
EAD PowerMaster home theater multi-channel power amplifiers.
Based on multi-parallel, bridged power devices to
increase speed and decrease distortion, as clean at 3 W
per channel as at 300 W.
See Stereo (Ger.) Nov ’99;
Prestige Audio Vidéo (Fr.) Jan ’00.
the EAD SmartCable, a very compact, in-line, AC-3 RF
demodulator, popular for laserdisc playback in the early days of
the Dolby Digital 5.1-channel surround sound format.
the award-winning EAD DSP-9000 III, and DSP-7000 III audiophile
DACs, which utilized the critically acclaimed Hagelin-Roxburgh
AccuLinear technology, and Digital Flywheel quartz PLL clocking methodology for
ultra-low TID and jitter (10 psrms).
Audio / Video / Analog / Digital / Mixed-signal / RF / microwave /antennas / EMC / ESD / Ethernet / PoE /
design/power management architecture/power supplies (linear 5 W – 2
kW, SMPS 1–100 W). Reliability-based design
CMOS VLSI design and layout,
I2C, SPI, RS232, RS485, CVBS, VGA, SDI, BT656, HDMI, DVI,
LVDS, 802.15.4, 802.11, CPLD,
ARM, PIC, NAND flash and parity ECC, SDRAM, EEPROM, and
other related technologies.
Instrumentation signal conditioning & interface (solar pyranometer,
anemometer, thermometer, rain gauge, ns PIN photodiode,
photomultiplier, thermopile, more...); data logging & analysis;
battery systems, solar charging, environmental
High-voltage, high-pressure spark gaps and tapered RC
charging networks, 0-50 kV, UV gas laser design, including EM
shielding and treatment; optical design; ray-tracing; sensor
integration. FMEA (failure modes and effects analysis), FTA
(fault tree analysis). Electromechanical design.
NI Multisim; SPICE; MATLAB; Mathematica; WinSMITH; WinLINE; Wireshark (RF and
wired); AWR Microwave Office; Protel/Altium
Berkley CMOS VLSI design tools: magic,
crystal, cosmos, esim, spice, eqntott, espresso, mpla,
SOP creation, best engineering practices, functional
specs, test plans/reports, PTCR (Performance, Time,
Cost, Risk) analysis, RCA (root cause analysis), failure
product management, project management, product
marketing, competitive analysis. Systems architecture
specialist with IC (internal communications) experience. Technical & scientific writing.
network analysis, SPICE-based Monte Carlo WCA or WCCA
(worst-case circuit analysis), statistical analysis, USB
interface signal logging (thermocouples, voltage, current, etc.)
and Excel analysis, worst-case and average-case
performance analysis of firmware.
design and implementation: FIR, IIR filter design,
FFT, convolution; discrete mathematics: difference
equations, numerical methods, time-space trade-off and
big-O complexity analysis of algorithms.
68K, PIC, 68HC11, ZR38001 assembler; VHDL.
MS Office 2010, Visio,
MS Project 2010, FrontPage; Adobe Photoshop; Sony Sound
Windows, Unix, Linux.
Amateur Radio Extra Class License; FCC Radio Station
Iowa, Iowa City, IA
Cumulative GPA 3.89
Graduate coursework in ECE PhD program (Intro to VLSI
Design, Computer Communication, Microcomputer-Based
Systems, Individual Investigations in ECE), July 1988,
One-micron CMOS design project: Binary Lookahead Carry
Adder, Aug. 1988. (20 pp.)
Individual Investigation report: On Computing the
Discrete Fourier Transform, July 1990. (34 pp.)
|University of Otago,
M.Sc. (Physics/Applied Physics; Math & Applied Math
Minor) May 1987
Thesis title: The Simple Fourier Transform. (249 pp.)
Post Grad Dip. Sci. (Physics/Applied Physics),
Thesis title: N2 Laser at 337.1
nm for the Study of Organic Laser Dyes. (54 pp.).
B.Sc. (Physics/applied Physics Major; Math &
Applied Math Minor), May 1971
Website by Alastair Roxburgh