– “We all love figures-of-merit – that’s why there are so many of them.”
Well … in reality there are only one or two that have reached canonical status, while the rest have found marginal use independently of their qualities (or possible lack thereof). Nevertheless, they are out there, and to bring some order in the flora and also to prepare the way for future analog-to-digital converter (ADC) FOM proposals and a better discussion of the topic, I will follow in the footsteps of another Swede – Carl Linnaeus – and try to develop some classification of the FOM species. In order to do that, I’d like to introduce you to “The Mother of All FOM” (TMAF):
A long list of generic sub-expressions (FOM classes) are found on the page named ‘Generic ADC FOM classes’ , together with examples of explicit FOM expressions found in the literature. Here, I’ll just give one example by looking at the generic sub-expression for the “A-class” FOM (for lack of better nomenclature):
With , and , we get the expression for the “ISSCC FOM”, the most commonly used ADC FOM today:
By setting , and , we get the inverted expression for the “ITRS FOM”, which is used e.g., in 
Read more in , and see more examples in . The introduction of a generic FOM and generic FOM classes allows the similarities and differences between figures of merit to be analyzed in a more systematic way. It’s a first attempt to define a common language and classification so we can actually compare and discuss the strengths and weaknesses of different FOM – a discussion that I believe is much needed.
Stay tuned, and you will find out …
 B. E. Jonsson, “A generic ADC FOM”, Converter Passion blog, On-line, https://converterpassion.wordpress.com/a-generic-adc-fom/, Jan., 2011.
 B. E. Jonsson, “Generic ADC FOM classes”, Converter Passion blog, On-line, https://converterpassion.wordpress.com/generic-adc-fom-classes/, Jan., 2011.
 System drivers, International Technology Review for Semiconductors, 2009 Update, On-line, http://www.itrs.net