Ideas for Connected Industry

Discussions about innovative, high-performance technology solutions for industryDD

What Do You Mean The Internet Is Down??…Dad!

Those are the chilling words that strike terror into any parent of teenage children. In fact, these days any-age children. It’s amazing today how reliant we have become on the Internet, and when we lose connection, the impact it has on the whole family. In my house, with two kids, when we get an outage, it impacts my home PC, the kids’ laptops, my wife’s iPad®, our streaming movie account, our smart TV connectivity, etc. Not to mention, all our...

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Why Good Strategies Fail. Time To Staff Up!

In my two blog posts in the series, I tackled some of the key topics in a recent report from The Economist Intelligence Unit, sponsored by the Project Management Institute (PMI; Why good strategies fail, lessons for the C-suite (1) , which really resonated with me. Now that we have discussed how to get sponsorship early on in the project and turn that sponsorship into an executable strategy via a governance model, I want to tackle the last topic...

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Optimizing Water and Wastewater Operations via the Industrial Internet

Enter the world of water utilities: aging infrastructure, declining revenues, increasing service level expectations, and regulations. What’s more, resources for water and wastewater capital programs are limited, making it difficult to carry out infrastructure modernization, expansion, and technology upgrades. How can you address these critical challenges while delivering the best return on investment to ratepayers or private sector investors?...

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The Surprise Impact of Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE)

If you’re in manufacturing, you’ve heard of OEE and the positive outcomes it can deliver. It’s a pivotal application that pulls together activities around process improvements, resulting in benefits like manufacturing stability, shorter runs and reduced materials. But, there’s also another positive impact to your operations that will likely surprise you—watch the video.

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My Dad, the Good News RSS Feed

My dad loves to give me articles to read – all kinds of information that he thinks will be useful or interesting to me. I’ve gotten articles from him about health, cars, bug sprays, parenting, GE, home security, 401K investments, blueberries, you name it. He always has a stack of articles to give me, sometimes even articles for other people that I’ll be seeing, with their name written at the top. He’s the original RSS. Last weekend, Dad gave me...

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Vanilla Is the Best Flavor for ERP

To maximize value, you’ve got to connect your ERP system to the shop floor. But that can be a complex undertaking because you have all these systems to connect. Hear how using best-of-breed products for PLM and MES help you take up that complexity so you can make the most of your ERP investment.

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When It Comes to Your Business, Who’s Manning the Scoreboard?

With spring comes baseball. With baseball comes a multitude of familiar things from sunflower seeds to bad calls by the ump. One other consistent thing, at least for me, is the old scoreboard at our town baseball diamond. When the older boys play, some of the younger teams man the scoreboard. You can see the younger boys sitting on the wooden deck with their feet dangling in the wind and paying little attention to the actual game. This results...

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A New Kind of Startup

Watching the Super Bowl last weekend, the pinnacle of American football, I reflected back on my own gridiron career. I was one of the biggest—if not the biggest—kids on the field during most of the eight or so years I played organized football. I was strong from lifting weights with my teammates, and I understood the fundamentals of the game as well as anyone from watching countless hours of pro ball with my football fanatic father. I had good...

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Say “Bon Voyage” to the Experienced Workforce

A few months ago, I went to the retirement and going-away party for my neighbor, Don. He had worked in the same job his whole career, which is amazing to me. Now, in his early 60s, Don was leaving to sail away to the Caribbean islands – a great retirement dream that he earned. At the party, I tried to think of other people I know who stayed at one job for decades. My grandfather came to mind. Also, my parents are close behind in years at their...

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IoT-Enabled Asset Optimization: A Matter of Life and Death

Asset utilization/ optimization is one of the few now-term, horizontal, killer applications in the Internet of Things. IoT-enabled asset utilization/ optimization will instrument physical assets that have been heretofore dark, anonymous and subsequently sub-optimal in their application. This illumination will, along with evidence of its ROI, energize many executives to invest in these capabilities. Operators of assets with cost and performance...

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Just Give Me One Version of the Truth, Please

To any of my fellow travelers who have been fighting their way across country battling the weather in the past few weeks, this blog is dedicated to you. I thought we had gotten through the worst of it, but it seems that is not the case as I type this blog late on a Friday night stuck in a hotel room rather than at home where I should be. So how did I end up here? Well, it started when one of my colleagues who shall remain nameless ( @...

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Life Lessons Learned From the “Dog-House”

This past Saturday, February 15, the day after Valentine’s Day, I was standing in line at my local florist patiently waiting to purchase a bouquet of flowers for my wife. In case you missed it…I was 24 hours late in making this transaction and was attempting to do what’s called a “Valentine’s Day Do-Over!” As I was listening to the gentleman in front of me, whom by the way was clearly in the same boat as me, struggle to articulate his needs to...

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Planes, Trains, and…Improved Time-to-Market

I know what you are thinking - isn’t it Planes, Trains and Automobiles? Well, not when it comes to the world of complex discrete manufacturing. In industries that are low volume and high mix - with engineer to order business models - the pain points, challenges, and subsequent solutions are unique. High Profile Time to Market Failures In the most extreme cases, if things don’t work out to plan, a company or program can even end up on 60 Minutes...

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The Connected Industrial World Is at Your Fingertips—Have You Turned Off Airplane Mode?

A few years ago I bought a GPS that I was quite pleased with. Then one day the touchscreen suddenly seemed unresponsive. I had to press hard on each letter on the pop-up keypad, and hold my finger there a bit longer than expected. As it turns out, nothing had changed on the GPS. The difference was that I had started to use an iPhone with capacitive touch. Suddenly the resistive touch screen on the GPS felt slow and cumbersome. Every time I get...

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Manufacturing Is Just Like Life – You Need Balance!

I was discussing life with some friends recently. The discussion centered on how life is really experienced in three dimensions – mental, physical, and spiritual. As always with this kind of topic, there were differences of opinion, which lead to some lengthy philosophical and at times heated discussions. In the end though, we all agreed that in order to have the fullest experience in life, we must be able to find a balance between the mental,...

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