Matt: how do you spend the bulk of your time? Drawing transistor blocks in computer software, sketching them up in paper, having meetings, running simulations in the lab...? Can you describe a typical slow workday vs a crunch workday nearing a product launch?
Well, since I prepare the models for BIOS developers, my cycle trends just before the actual validation curve. To that end, the boring days fall during the requirements-gathering phase, and the nonstop days fall more between our model's "release" and actual Silicon power-on. In this period, we're playing catch for any bugs that get thrown our way, working closely with BIOS guys to get them ready for platform arrival.
I don't spend too much time in meetings - my program manager tries to absorb those for the actual technical staff. My team is pretty small currently, 5 total: an architect, a program manager, and three developers. We're an agile team, adjunct to the much larger BIOS teams (15-20, times N).
A normal week in development is spent like mostly any other software development job: requirements gathering cycle, proposal review, prototyping, design review, and implementation. Simple.