Bill Watkins may have parted ways with hard drive giant Seagate, but he hasn't dropped out of the realm of high technology. Just a few months after Seagate announced that 800 workers, along with CEO Bill Watkins, the ex-CEO has returned with his own startup. Watkins has founded a flash memory company focusing on high-density chips, marketing to “small devices”. Those would include things like laptops and other handheld devices, which could include PDAs. The company, Vertical Circuits, claims they will be working with new technology that promises to make flash memory even thinner than it is today.

Watkins has been a somewhat prominent figure in the media, mostly due to the very strong public statements he gave about the direction Seagate was taking. In his latest endeavor, he sites space as a premium concern for industry vendors, claiming that there are big differences in demand and price for a mere millimeter of thickness. When you look at devices like modern PDAs, such as the iPhone, it's easy to see his point – package density is an important concern when your real estate is smaller than a deck of cards.

There is no mention if the new startup has any big deals in the works, or what companies they are working with.