First Web-based e-learning for boundary scan is centerpiece of ASSET’s Internet strategy

March 7, 2002

The new Web-based training curriculum offered by ASSET InterTech, Inc., the international leader in boundary-scan (IEEE 1149.1/JTAG) test and in-system programming (ISP), is the industry’s first e-learning courseware on boundary scan. As part of its strategy to make its Web site a resource for test engineers and designers, ASSET has assembled an extensive array of Web-based tools and online services.

“Over the last 10 years, the Internet has become the preferred way for engineers to learn, research, communicate and interact with the rest of the industry,” said Arden Bjerkeli director, customer application support for ASSET InterTech. “In recognition of this, we’ve made a significant investment in developing interactive, multimedia boundary-scan and ScanWorks™ courses, design guidelines, a Web-based automated support system and other resources to help engineers do their jobs more efficiently and increase their technical knowledge to be more valuable to their companies.”

ASSET’s ScanWorks boundary-scan test and ISP environment is currently used by leading electronics companies such as Cisco, Lucent Technologies, Ericsson, Intel, Rockwell International, EMC and others. As a leader in boundary-scan technology, ASSET gives its customers access to a complete solution, extending beyond hardware and software to consulting, service, training and support.

Web-Based e-Learning Assures Effective Test

ASSET University on the ASSET Web site ( is composed of several layers of educational and training materials. Engineers or technicians can choose the type of course that best meets their needs.

Based on the Techniq Learning Content Management System from Vitalect, Inc., ASSET has developed multimedia, Web-based courses including a boundary scan tutorial as well as a course on how to develop boundary-scan tests using ScanWorks. These courses take students step-by-step through a logical and self-paced learning process. Animated exercises and audio explanations enhance the learning efficiency of the experience. Course administrators with ASSET University can monitor the progress students are making and offer assistance when it is needed.

Another layer of training and education is available through ASSET’s Web-based conferencing. Learning conferences on ScanWorks are regularly scheduled or an individualized course can be constructed to address the needs of a certain group.

ASSET’s Web-based training courses complement the traditional classroom training curriculum that is offered in training centers around the world, including five US cities, and locations in Europe and the Pacific Rim.

“We found ASSET’s Web-based training to be unique and a significant advantage,” said Don Crawford, project manager at Turnkey Test, a user of ScanWorks. “It gave great flexibility to our staff, so each person could proceed at his or her own pace. And they could access the training from any of our offices or any other location, and at any time. A great tool! We didn’t have to travel and going through the Web-based training while you’re using the software is really a thorough learning experience. Plus, we got excellent support from ASSET’s support staff.”

Design-for-Test Tools

In addition to e-learning and training, the ASSET Web site features free design-for-test (DFT) guidelines. This material has been compiled from various sources, including technical papers that have been presented at the International Test Conference by companies like Motorola, Lucent and ASSET InterTech, as well as information provided on the Texas Instruments and National Semiconductor Web sites.

“Guidelines for Device and Board DFT Based on Boundary Scan” is a straightforward tutorial that takes designers through the various issues and trade-offs involved in designing boundary-scan test and ISP capabilities into a printed circuit board. By employing sound DFT techniques during the early stages of design, the circuit board can be more effectively tested and programmed as a prototype and as an assembled product during manufacturing.

Online Support Services

The ASSET Web site has deployed extensive support information, as well as a system that reduces the response and resolution times for technical support inquiries.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs), application notes, customer success stories in various vertical industries and other types of information are available for free. A new Case Management System (CMS) functions as a support portal, giving customers access to the boundary-scan engineers who make up ASSET’s customer support group.

Users are able to submit their queries electronically through the ASSET CMS. The system then automatically routes each question to an engineer with expertise in the topic or to an engineer with general knowledge of boundary-scan technology and the ScanWorks system. The CMS system lets customers manage ASSET’s support response better by assigning priorities to each support request. CMS uses each query’s priority to automatically manage the response of ASSET’s support group so that the needs of the customer are effectively satisfied. The goals of the Web-based CMS are to respond to customer questions as quickly as possible, to ensure that all customer needs are adequately addressed, and to provide monitoring and analytical data on support activities.