John Marc

Member Since: June 16, 2013

Country: United States

  • Stepping back, I'd like to say "Thank you" to Sparkfun. I sure you all gave this some thought about even if to post this, I appreciate the transparency.

  • Agreed, it's a complex issue. The tough part is we see an entire region (China in this case) that took actions to become a center for electronic manufacturing, and they excel at it. They built factories, supply chains, trained their people, etc. If we in the USA wanted to take steps to regain dominance in that or any specific field I'd welcome it, but we should do that by supporting businesses rather than placing tariffs.

    An example of an entire industry move is the film industry (just one of the industries I've researched in the past). Where regions (example: Atlanta) made moves to try to bring some of that Hollywood "pie" to them. They saw economic possibilities, made it easier (process and tax wise) to produce in their area which provided jobs and growth in housing.

    We in the USA should try to beat the competition on price, quality and environmental impact. We have some of the technical talent here in the USA to design chips, sadly as of today we do not have the technical manufacturing that China does (at scale) that beats them on price - which is why companies still get chips outside USA regardless of tariff. In the cases of tariffs companies pay more, customers pay to cover that cost.. And the money goes to the government?

  • Personally, the price of an "Made in America" product is typically too expensive; I'd have to be "elite" to afford it. I try to buy American as much as I can; however it's typically too expensive for my budget. If we just consider the labor costs, most products/companies cannot afford the customer demanded price. Let's take something simple: Hammers.

    If I make a whiz-bang product in China it'd cost me $5.50 to make, I can sell it for $10 If I make the same whiz-bang product in USA it'd cost me $10 to make, I'd sell it for $10? Probably not

    So I'd have to change the price. It's not a luxury tool, car or something else that it's highly desirable, it's a hammer. So my customers, some that buy these sweet hammers by the thousands choose a product that is just as functional, but a dollar cheaper. Are they obligated, ethically, morally or even patriotically to buy a product made in USA? I'd suggest not.

    Placing tariffs on products from certain countries does not balance the scales or create new jobs. Middle America "middle class" is typically 50-60k per year wage. If you had to mine the metal, make the paint, pay for the lights to be on, pay for businesses to build your buildings, pay for insurance, taxes, trucks to drive my hammers around, people to staff the trucks, people to assemble my hammers, people to market the product, people to price and do competitive research, support health care and 401k for my employees.. How much would I have to charge for my hammers? Would you buy this very expensive hammer (by the thousands) if you were a retailer?

  • Training to carry the Olympic torch has begun!

  • Had it in my cart, "Proceed to Checkout" kept bringing me back to the cart... Each time losing a box.

  • Was just in Colorado, don't think you had tours of either old or new buildings on Thursday... Maybe a "virtual tour" of the building before the live event? :)

  • With the "home" becoming a little more connected, major OS makers Apple and Android have started putting together frameworks to interact with hardware directly. Should we be looking forward to iOS programming tutorials that possibly interact with hardware? i.e.: Control home lighting/cleaning/locking doors with your iOS device? :)

  • Watching the live feed!

  • Is there any relation for XBee and Zigbee? I know that Phillips Hue uses Zigbee. Would be pretty awesome to make an Arduino control those...

  • Sparkfun, thank you for being awesome! We appreciate you guys being open and communicative about these kinda things! I am sure that it just means we will have to buy more in bulk from you guys!

    Thanks!