Subject: Re: Scheduling solutions?
From: John Shott <>
Date: Thu, 22 Jan 2004 14:08:32 -0800

John, Hendrik, and all Raith Users:

I certainly welcome discussions related to improved ways of reserving the 
Raith.  As I'm sure many of you are painfully aware, there are a handful of 
tools in the lab for which reservation "allocation" becomes a problem.

My own preference would be to try to avoid solutions that avoid staff time to 
administer and I would hope that we could come up with a set of reservation 
rules that could be enforced or checked in an automated way.

I want to make you aware that Bill Murray is currently working on putting the 
infrastructure in place that will allow us to specify and check 
equipment-specific reservation rules.  While it will likely take several 
months before something is ready for production, I can also tell you that this 
capability has been on our wish list for some time and has finally gotten to 
the top of the list.

I would encourage you to continue to think of rules or collections of rules 
that you think might offer the means of allowing fair allocation of scarce 
equipment time.  I expect that we will be able to accommodate AND/OR 
combinations of different rules.  In many respects easily expressed rules may 
offer a good place to start ... easily expressed probably translates into 
easily understood and easily implemented.  Examples of easily expressed rules 
might include:

1. A limit of X total hours of reservation time during the coming week.
2. Maximum individual reservation duration of 4 hours during "prime time" and 
8 hours during other times. (For some definition of prime time such as M-F, 
3. Cancellation of a reservation less than X hours in advance penalizes the 
ability to make reservations for a time into the future.

Some of the things that may be harder to do would include some sort of waitng 
list or priority-based allocation ... at the moment we have no support for 
"bidding" for reservations or a waiting list.  While that could be added, if 
need by, my guess is that we can improve many things, from a reservation 
standpoint, by being able to define and enforce collections of simpler rules.

In any event, I wanted you all to know that support for improved means of 
allocating reservations is important to Team Coral and we are beginning to 
work on tools that will, we believe, have a positive impact on many if not all 
of the heavily used tools such as the Raith, STS etcher, LPCVD nitride, etc.