This year, for the first time since 1976, the economy will grow in
virtually every corner of the globe. Name a country, and economists predict
solid gains in the gross domestic product in 1995. In Europe, Germany and France
are both expected to grow by 3%, while Great Britain is forecast to be up 4%. In
North America, the United States and Canada will grow by more than 3%. Brazil
and Chile will be up 6%, and Argentina 4.5%. The outlook is even brighter in
Asia, where China's surging economy should advance 9.5%, while South Korea will
grow nearly 8%. Even Japan, still recovering from a tragic earthquake, will see
its economy climb by 3%.
Helping to ensure more economic progress in the years ahead is a whole series of vital economic agreements. The European Community is welcoming new nations to its fold and encouraging a broader exchange of goods and services. The North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has created similar benefits for the U.S., Mexico, and Canada. Meanwhile, nations everywhere will gain from the successful conclusion of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). Never before in history has the world enjoyed a greater and freer climate for trade. With the enormous productivity gains of recent years, U.S. companies in particular can savor their best export opportunities of the postwar period.
In this healthy global economy, engineers everywhere will be challenged to design truly world-class products. They will be able to specify the best materials, components, and systems from suppliers all around the world. Engineers will travel more and learn about a wider range of technologies. Increasingly, they will work together with engineers from other companies and countries in technical alliances. What's more, their jobs will be made more productive by new and better computer tools. In short, as the world economy grows in the balance of the '90s, engineers will grow right along with it.
Science fiction author Isaac Asimov may have the best rules for effective brainstorming and creativity. His never-before-published essay, "On Creativity," recently made it to the Web pages of MIT Technology Review.
Much has been made over the potentially dangerous flammability of lithium-ion batteries after major companies like Boeing, Sony, and Tesla have grappled with well-publicized battery fires. Researchers at Stanford University may have come up with a solution to this problem with a smart sensor for lithium-ion batteries that provides a warning if the battery is about to overheat or catch fire.
In this new Design News feature, "How it Works," we’re starting off by examining the inner workings of the electronic cigarette. While e-cigarettes seemed like a gimmick just two or three years ago, they’re catching fire -- so to speak. Sales topped $1 billion last year and are set to hit $10 billion by 2017. Cigarette companies are fighting back by buying up e-cigarette manufacturers.
Advertised as the "Most Powerful Tablet Under $100," the Kindle Fire HD 6 was too tempting for the team at iFixit to pass up. Join us to find out if inexpensive means cheap, irreparable, or just down right economical. It's teardown time!
The increased adoption of wireless technology for mission-critical applications has revved up the global market for dynamic electronic general purpose (GP) test equipment. As the link between cloud networks and devices -- smartphones, tablets, and notebooks -- results in more complex devices under test, the demand for radio frequency test equipment is starting to intensify.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.