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Mid Day Report

Daily news and top headlines for IT professionals

Cellphone Tumors

July 18, 2011 8:54 am | by David Mantey, Editor, Product Design & Development | Articles | Comments

I now see why blind eyes are easily turned when news breaks of the latest carcinogen; we’re punch drunk with fear to the point of no return. Your cellphone will give you cancer, your laptop will make you sterile, your water bottle will hit three favorites -- breast cancer, sperm count, and prostate cancer (among others) -- and yet we remain sweaty, sport jacket-wearing mouth breathers who will be suddenly shocked when we turn paternal/maternal only to realize that our plumbing has been stripped out by homeless copper bandits.

From Art To Science

July 18, 2011 8:53 am | Articles | Comments

Food and beverage manufacturing requires high-volume production equipment and close adherence to FSMA and FDA rules and regulations for manufacturers based in the U.S. and for imported products. “From Art to Science” is an ongoing program and collaboration between manufacturers, GE Intelligent Platforms and STICORP to apply a rigorous and scientific approach to process optimization and product safety in the food and beverage industry.

Plastic Strip-Fed Terminals

July 18, 2011 7:18 am | Product Releases | Comments

Thomas & Betts (Memphis, TN) offers its line of Sta-Kon plastic strip-fed terminals. They are designed to enable high-volume production and not jam equipment and tooling. Internal barrel serrations increase conductivity and pullout strength. The sleeved barrels prevent separation that can diminish both pullout strength and dielectric performance.

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Whirlpool Lays Off 350 Workers At Iowa Plant

July 18, 2011 4:57 am | News | Comments

AMANA, Iowa (AP) — Whirlpool Corp. is laying off 350 workers from its refrigerator plant in Iowa. Kristine Vernier, spokeswoman for the Benton Harbor, Mich.-based company, told KGAN-TV that 300 permanent workers and 50 summer workers are losing their jobs. Workers were told of the layoffs on Friday.

Conn. Takes On Cleanups At Dirty Industrial Sites

July 18, 2011 4:56 am | by Stephen Singer, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WATERBURY, Conn. (AP) — To Joseph Vrabely Jr., the cavernous, century-old industrial building on a site polluted by oil and metals is a thing of beauty. With giant cranes inside the 700-foot-long workspace, the building that once housed one of the city's largest brass manufacturers is perfectly suited for Vrabely's company, Atlantic Steel & Processing LLC, which cuts steel to produce tools, automotive parts and other products.

HTC Builds Its Case In Patent Fight With Apple

July 18, 2011 4:54 am | News | Comments

NEW YORK (AP) — Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC Corp. said it believes it has a strong case for an appeal of a U.S. International Trade Commission ruling that HTC violated two Apple Inc. patents. HTC said it does not yet have the full ruling and analysis to determine the details of the findings, but General Counsel Grace Lei said, "We are highly confident we have a strong case for the ITC appeals process and are fully prepared to defend ourselves using all means possible," in a release dated Saturday.

Samsung Raises Ante In Patent Dispute Over LED Lighting

July 18, 2011 4:53 am | by Kelly Olsen, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A Samsung unit is raising the ante in a patent dispute with a German rival over energy-saving LED lighting amid intensifying legal disputes among global companies jockeying for supremacy in key consumer technologies. Samsung LED Co. said Sunday that it asked the United States International Trade Commission on Friday to bar products of Osram GmbH and two units from entering the U.

Google Comes Under Fire For Search Results... Again

July 18, 2011 4:52 am | News | Comments

BRUSSELS (AP) — At least three Belgian newspapers are reporting Google is preventing their web sites from being found through its search engine as part of a legal fight accusing the American-based company of copyright infringement. A Google spokesman said Friday it was required by a Belgian court order to block the searches.

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Third Worker Dies As A Result Of Tenn. Plant Fire

July 18, 2011 4:50 am | News | Comments

GALLATIN, Tenn. (AP) -- A third employee of a Middle Tennessee metal powders plant has died, following a May fire at the facility Fred Tuttle died at Vanderbilt University Medical Center on Thursday evening, according to WTVF-TV, which quoted a hospital spokesperson. Tuttle was one of five people who were injured -- three of them critically -- in a May 27 fire at the Hoeganaes (HAY'-gan-ehz) plant in Gallatin.

Ultra-realistic Robots Test Our Relationship With Machines

July 15, 2011 7:56 am | Videos | Comments

An ultra-realistic robot, known as a geminoid, is helping psychologists test how we relate to machines. The device is designed to be almost identical to the professor who's leading the project in Denmark. If you're having trouble watching this video, try downloading the latest version of Flash Player or contacting your IT department.

The Challenge Of Marketing Nutrition

July 15, 2011 7:38 am | Articles | Comments

The skepticism of nutritionists and investors poses a large challenge for food companies looking to market more nutritious products. By Lindsey Coblentz, Associate Editor, Food Manufacturing It seems more and more emphasis continues to be placed on eating healthy, especially with the ongoing media coverage of the nation’s obesity problem.

Ready For Harvest

July 15, 2011 7:18 am | by Greg Richards, FARO Technologies | Articles | Comments

By using laser scanning technology, Harvest Technologies creates products without much of the waste that comes with introducing the human element to measurement practices. Generally speaking, engineers are pragmatists. Find the best way to complete a task accurately, quickly, and easily – or easily enough – and run with it.

Google Shines Under New CEO Page

July 15, 2011 4:54 am | by Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google Inc. CEO Larry Page's traditionally frosty relationship with Wall Street turned into a warm embrace Thursday after the Internet search leader released strong financial results for its latest quarter. The results represented Page's first report card since he became CEO at the start of the second quarter in April, ending the decade-long reign of his mentor, Eric Schmidt.

EPA Proposes $176K Fine For Conn. Plant

July 15, 2011 4:53 am | News | Comments

CHESHIRE, Conn. (AP) — Federal environmental officials say a Connecticut aerospace and marine manufacturer faces a fine of nearly $176,000 for allegedly violating clean air and right-to-know laws. The Environmental Protection Agency said Thursday that Consolidated Industries Inc. in Cheshire violated the federal Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act by failing to file chemical reporting forms for chromium and nickel in 2007 and 2008.

South Korean Lawyer Wages Privacy Fight Against Apple

July 15, 2011 4:51 am | by Kelly Olsen, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A South Korean lawyer who is an avid user of the iPhone is waging a legal privacy battle against Apple Inc. over the device's tracking capabilities. Kim Hyeong-seok said Friday that he has gotten at least 16,000 people in South Korea to join him in a class-action lawsuit he plans to file against the company in a Seoul court in early August.

Federal Reserve: Manufacturing Falls Flat In June

July 15, 2011 4:49 am | by Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. auto factories produced fewer goods in June than the previous month, and overall factory production was flat. It marked the third straight month of weak manufacturing output. The Federal Reserve says factory production was unchanged last month following a tiny 0.

Samsung: Worker Cancer Unrelated To Manufacturing

July 15, 2011 4:45 am | by Kelly Olsen, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

YONGIN, South Korea (AP) -- A study commissioned by Samsung into cancers among six of its semiconductor workers found they were unrelated to exposure to chemicals on the job but the electronics giant is not yet releasing the full results. U.S.-based Environ International Corp. on Thursday announced the broad findings of a study it conducted over the past year of several Samsung chip manufacturing facilities.

Latest Economic Data Shows Uneven Future

July 15, 2011 4:44 am | by Christopher S. Rugaber and Derek Kravitz, AP Economics Writers | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A mixed slate of reports Thursday showed the economy is being held back by high gas prices and sluggish hiring. Economists are forecasting a pick-up in growth in the second half of the year. But the latest data revealed only faint signs of a turnaround. The Commerce Department said retail sales ticked up only 0.

Manufacturing Technology Orders Up 108 Percent In 2011

July 14, 2011 10:48 am | Articles | Comments

Year-to-date U.S. manufacturing technology orders of $1,984.87 million reflect a 108-percent increase when compared with 2010. Peter Borden, AMTDA President May U.S. manufacturing technology orders totaled $388.27 million according to AMTDA, the American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association and AMT, the Association For Manufacturing Technology.

The Importance Of Managers Is Overstated

July 14, 2011 10:30 am | Articles | Comments

Simply focusing on the manager means turning a blind eye to the contributions of the staff, and in doing so, you exclude a lot of the potential that exists within the company. Stop wasting money on expensive training courses for managers — send the entire team instead! This produces better results, says Johan Bertlett, who recently defended a PhD thesis in psychology at Lund University, Sweden.

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