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Mid Day Report

Daily news and top headlines for IT professionals

Make Decisions Quicker And Easier

April 2, 2013 10:15 am | by Alan Nicol, Executive Member, AlanNicolSolutions

Take a look at those wastes and see how many of them can be, or are, caused by indecision.  Waiting is obvious; we often wait for decisions and a lack of decisiveness exacerbates the wait.  When people wait, so does work or output generally, so we create inventory of work-in-progress that isn’t getting done


Six Ways Manufacturers Can Build A Profitable Digital Presence

April 2, 2013 10:00 am | by Curtis M. Alexander

Recently a company approached me with a thorny problem: They decided to establish a digital presence. After a high five figure investment and six months of work and debate they had a beautiful website with all the bells and whistles. Unfortunately, they had no visitors, revenue or profit.


American Built, Building America

April 1, 2013 9:59 am | by Michelle Avila

More and more companies from Apple to General Electric, Ford and Caterpillar, are deciding to make their products here. But what is behind this manufacturing renaissance? Why are companies bringing back jobs and what makes those companies think they can succeed?


Countdown To REACH — Complying With Document Delivery Challenges

March 29, 2013 9:40 am | by Malcolm Carroll, Director, Reach Delivery

The aim of REACH is to improve and ensure the safe use of chemicals, and the one of the things that REACH does is make all parties in the supply chain — from manufacturers, distributors through to downstream users — directly responsible for the safety of the chemical substances they handle.


Launching A Counterattack On Rising Commodity Costs

March 27, 2013 9:38 am | by Thomas Bornemann, Global Consumer Products Practice Leader, Procurian

In the current commodity bull market, consumer products companies face increasing margin pressure. Consumers are demanding value — increasing competition from private label and restricting manufacturers’ ability to pass along rising raw materials costs.


Virtualization In Manufacturing

March 27, 2013 9:30 am | by Manufacturing Business Technology

Manufacturing Business Technology took time to talk to Frank Hill, director of manufacturing business development, Stratus Technologies, about virtualization. Hill explains what it is, how virtualization can help manufacturers take advantage of the processing power they may already have and how to mitigate some of the risk facing companies every day.


The Apocalyptic Threat Of Undead Projects

March 26, 2013 11:30 am | by Alan Nicol, Executive Member, AlanNicolSolutions

Are there any of us who haven’t been assigned to the “undead” project?  You know, those projects that seem to go on forever without ever possessing the priority or proper resources to get finally to launch, or the ones that are constantly re-directed or re-defined such that we never make meaningful progress.


Redundancy In Manufacturing Control Systems

March 26, 2013 9:47 am | by Greg Lynch

Depending on the type of interruption and the severity of the consequences, some manufacturing systems require PLC redundancy to keep people and equipment safe. Instrumentation and manufacturing engineers need to balance the cost of redundant PLCs with the consequences of an outage.


ProMat 2013 Serves As Launch Pad For Material Handling Products

March 25, 2013 10:35 am | by IMPO

Thousands of material handling technology enthusiasts braved a frigid Chicago winter in order to attend MHIA’s biennial ProMat expo this past January – enough, in fact, to cause a record number on the show floor Tuesday, as well as a record number of attendees to Tuesday’s keynote by Steve Forbes.


Synchronized Motion In Automated Loading Systems

March 22, 2013 9:15 am | by Pines Technology

The design challenge for the loader system of this size was to come up with a method that would ensure smooth, synchronous motion. The design configuration had to be simple enough to allow for disassembly after initial testing in Pines’ manufacturing plant, then reassembled for actual operation in the customer’s overseas production facilities.


7 Common KPIs For Production Monitoring

March 21, 2013 3:31 pm | by Red Lion Controls Inc.

KPIs are assorted variables that organizations use to assess, analyze and track manufacturing processes. These performance measurements are commonly used to evaluate success in relation to goals and objectives. Even if an organization does not employ formal continuous improvement initiatives, efficiency gains can still be realized by borrowing lessons learned through visual management techniques.


iPurchase: Safety

March 20, 2013 11:15 am | by Manufacturing Business Technology

While looking at the latest trends in safety equipment and compliance issues relating to the manufacturing environment, it's important to remember that knowing the requirements of organizations like ANSI and OSHA is not quite enough. The enforcement of internal best practices plays a key role in the outcome — and it's a culture shift that comes from the top down.


Upgrading The Components Side Of Material Transfer

March 20, 2013 8:53 am | by Rachel Leisemann Immel, Associate Editor, IMPO

That “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts” certainly rings true when considering industrial conveying systems. The components side of material transfer can be the lifeline of a manufacturer, ensuring that parts get safely and efficiently from point A to point B — saving workers strenuous and expensive labor — and going where forklifts and other material handling solutions might not be able to go.


Survive A Network Failure Without Duplicating The Network

March 20, 2013 8:47 am | by Bernie Anger, General Manager, Control and Communication Systems for GE Intelligent Platforms

Ensuring high levels of system uptime is essential for many control systems, as this drives productivity and profitability. The risk of downtime is a significant concern since it negatively impacts operational resources and the bottom line.


Q&A: Automation Trends For Food Manufacturers

March 19, 2013 8:41 am | by Lindsey Jahn, Associate Editor, Food Manufacturing

Incorporating automated equipment into food manufacturing processes can offer a wealth of benefits. Matt Wicks of Intelligrated spoke with Food Manufacturing about how food processors can best harness automated technologies in their facilities.


Onshoring With Automation

March 19, 2013 8:32 am | by Automation GT

Onshoring, the movement of returning outsourced manufacturing back to the U.S., first began with labor issues in China. Because of raising labor costs, companies are looking to move production back to the U.S. CEO and President of Automation GT, Simon Grant, states “we’ve seen a trend with companies wishing to be ‘reshored’. 


Automation & Process Controls Week

March 18, 2013 9:52 am | by Manufacturing Business Technology

Manufacturing Business Technology is devoting this week to Automation & Process Controls. Check here daily for articles, blogs and videos being featured this week. Hear from industry experts on how they've integrated technology, the solutions currently being offered in the industry and gain insight on making the most of your operations. 


The Virtual Plant Seen Through Standardized 3D HMI

March 18, 2013 9:28 am | by Chris Parkinson, Senior Engineer, HMI Technology Lead

As the manufacturing industry moves rapidly into the virtual, paperless era, the standardized working environment for managing manufacturing operations require tools like HMI 3D visuals and flat screen monitors in control rooms and at strategic points throughout the facility.  It is becoming the norm, not the exception.


Modular Control Buildings Bring Flexibility To Remote Processing Sites

March 18, 2013 9:18 am | by Matt Hodson, President and CEO, Principal Technology Inc.

Pressures to reduce staff levels for onsite operations coupled with the increasing sophistication and expense of automation and control equipment have led to growing trend to use modular structures to house and protect sensitive process and automation controls. 


Why The Manufacturing Supply Chain Is Putting Revenue At Risk

March 15, 2013 8:57 am | by Michael Kerman,Director of Industry Development, Revitas

Creative sales incentives are the bread and butter of manufacturing and technology companies. Typically, the more attractive the incentives, the more shipments will be driven through the channel, and the more revenue the company will collect. But while such incentives have helped many companies grow, they also pose serious risks to revenue when managed improperly.



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