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May 23, 2007

I'd love to be proved wrong.

Writing about Manufacturing Engineering! from All Paths Lead to Kenya...

The video on Asim’s site looks great and in principle who can argue with the ideal but it is very idealistic. Do I mean unrealistic? I guess I do.

Very few manufacturing companies successfully implement and sustain complex IT systems. Keeping the data up to date is very difficult especially if, as in the demonstration, data needs to be reformatted. People have a natural tendency in my experience to select the path of least effort/resistance and in the case shown will sometimes elect to simply pass on a message verbally. Even if they have the intention of inputting the data a short while later will they? Always? or will the fast pace of manufacturing today leave them in the situation that they know that the original data is by now already out of date, so why bother?

I can see a version of this used in practice but I don’t think that many companies would be able to gain such a smooth and complete integration as shown by the presenter. For monitoring the plant I think it would work fine; as a component in a workflow environment fine; as an execution tool I doubt it…

... but I’d love to be proved wrong


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