I bought a $300+ digital camera that uses mini-CDs as media. The little plastic clip that holds the mini-CD split. I contacted the manufacturer and several repair places to get another small plastic
clip. I was informed they weren’t available as a separate item, that I could buy a motor-board clip for $ 141 plus labor. I went to eBay and bought the identical camera for $39 (it included camera, case, charger, etc.) and I am back in business. Plus, if the “new” one ever has a mechanical or electronic problem I can salvage the small plastic clip and be back in business with the original unit.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.