An attempt has failed to add more categories to those covered by the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The budget appropriation for the program in fiscal year 1998 is $3 million. It does not include funds for a proposed expansion of the award into healthcare and education fields. Currently, two awards may be given annually in each of three categories: manufacturing, service, and small business. The four winners of the 1997 Baldrige award were the 3M Dental Products Div., Solectron Corp., Merrill Lynch Credit Corp., and Xerox Business Services. This month at a conference in Washington, the firms will analyze their strategies for quality improvement. A new book, written by Baldrige examiner Kicab Castaneda-Mendez aims to help other companies achieve similar quality gains. Titled "The Baldrige Assessor's Workbook," it is published by Quality Resources of New York City. The book offers readers a number of hands-on exercises.
During a teardown of the iPad Air and Microsoft Surface Pro 3 at the Medical Design & Manufacturing Show in Schaumburg, Ill., an engineer showed this "inflammatory" video about the dangers of maliciously mishandling lithium-ion batteries.
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.
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