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In electronics design, Computer Aided Design (CAD) tools manage part data in a logical schematic view (a part symbol) and a physical PCB view (a part footprint). Yet, a part has a third view, which CAD tools ignore - its supply data (manufacturer part number, variant, distributor, etc). To manage this manufacturing view a broad class of tools known as Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) have evolved. A substantial chasm exists between the manufacturing and engineering views. More specifically, part data known to the supply chain (managed through PLM tools) and performance and specification data known to the engineering world (managed through CAD tools) must be manually integrated and managed by the design team.
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