Category: Technology Planning
June 28, 2012
Corporate boardrooms and government organizations lack diversity. When I say this, the reader's first thoughts may jump to sexual, racial or ethnic diversity, but what I am seeking is diversity of thought. We need more leaders skilled in scientific thinking and methods....
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Patent setback or reasonable patent reform?
March 27, 2012
Last week the US Supreme Court rejected a biotech industry patent previously granted to Prometheus Laboratories, a Nestle unit. The Wall Street Journal characterized this as a "setback for medical - test firms". It seems to me that the principles the court applied could also be used to setback many information technology and automation patents, but would this be a setback or just reasonable patent reform?...
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The IT - Engineering Chasm
July 17, 2011
It is eleven years after Y2k in an age when kids can use a computer network by the age of 3. Yet we are still hearing of issues between engineering and information technology (IT) departments that get in the way of maximizing operations on the shop floor. What gives?...
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Govenment officials warn of cyber attacks
February 11, 2011
Two days after my post on cyber security and end users' need to take an architected approach to the automation and control systems, the Los Angeles Times reported on how concerned US intelligence officials are about cyber attacks on the US....
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Security - Another reason for an automation architecture
February 9, 2011
If you weren't convinced before, sitting through the Anti-counterfeiting and Brand Protection sessions at the ARC World Forum was enough to convince anyone that there are a bunch of bad people out there who don't care what kind of harm they cause to your company or to your customers. And while on the topic of security and bad people, we can't overlook the increasing need to be concerned about cyber...
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Implications for packaging as US manufacturing rebounds
January 22, 2011
Manufacturing output, productivity, capital investment and jobs are all on the rise as the US creeps out of recession according to this week's Wall St. Journal. As worldwide demand for goods increases, especially in Asia, some US manufacturers are once again investing in capacity in the US and using their overseas capacity to fill overseas demand. With suitable government support, cooperation between labor and management and a return to teaching...
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Documentation - the MOST important tool
December 17, 2010
An effective industrial maintenance program for packaging, or any other advanced manufacturing operation, depends upon three things: workers with well-developed technical skills; workers with job-specific knowledge and experience; and complete and adequate documentation. It has become of concern to me that, just as we are facing a severe a lack of both skills and experience, I am now hearing that more and more corporations are losing control over the one...
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Packaging applications of linear motors debut at Interpack
May 5, 2008
Linear motors have been slow to catch on in packaging, but several applications appeared at this year's Interpack. It's time to put linear motors on your company's technology plan....
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OMAC should maintain a simple focus on packaging
February 25, 2008
At the annual OMAC Users Group meeting, held this month in Orlando, a discussion was generated on the topic of putting a more general face on OMAC by dropping its focus on packaging with regard to PackML and PackTags. The argument goes that since the technical product is elegant enough to be applied to other industries, it shouldn't be referred to as PackWhatever, implying that its use is limited to...
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Social Networking - The Next Great Enabling Technology
December 7, 2007
Few would disagree that the digital servo has been the great enabling technology for packaging operations over the past 15 years. Could it be that social networking software as exploited by YouTube and MySpace may be the next great enabler?...
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It's 2007: Do you know where your drawings are?
September 24, 2007
There may be one piece of intellectual capital that packagers value less than their aging workforce (see Packagers undervalue intellectual captial) and that is their equipment documentation. Lack of good documentation is one of the greatest contributors to poor productivity in American manufacturing. All too often, management finds it easier to point fingers at their employees for lack of skills rather than pointing at themselves for lack of a coherent...
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Interchangeable parts - Why not software?
August 19, 2007
The concept of interchangeable parts is one that packaging machinery builders readily understand and depend upon every day. Not only are parts from a single manufacturer interchangable within a machine, but builders source custom parts from multiple manufacturers to control cost and schedule and generic parts are interchangeable across a host of different machines and devices. We have come to enjoy and expect that fasteners, shafts, gears, couplings, motors, valves,...
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The hidden packaging economy
May 30, 2007
Let's do a little experiment. Ask yourself the following questions? Can I name 2 of the top 3 North American automobile companies? Can I name 2 of the top 3 North American metals companies? Can I name 2 of the top 3 North American petro-chemical companies? Can I name 2 of the top 3 North American packagers? Can I name 2 of the top 3 North American packaging machinery?...
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Community activism or tribalism for automation industry?
May 14, 2007
Automation professionals used to behave as a community. End users, technology providers and systems integrators would convene at industry-wide events, much like county fairs, to share ideas, best practices and lessons-learned....
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Why demographics will drive your packaging automation
March 26, 2007
Indications are that capital spending for packaging automation is on the rise. PMMI reports increased sales among their members; automation companies are reporting a brisk business environment; and machine suppliers that I have talked to report both increasing backlogs and forecasts. One reason often cited for this is workforce demographics....
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|About Keith Campbell
|Leaders learn from the past while
looking to the future - and bring both to bear on the here
and now. This is the philosophy that has steered Keith Campbell's
30+ years in manufacturing. It has worked for him in operations,
maintenance, engineering, R&D, education, consulting and
professional organizations--and now he's putting it to work
for you--taking you to the edge of his thoughts on packaging