NI’s CEO feels ease of use will help PAC take
Programmable Automation Control has become a hot topic in National
Instruments’ R&D labs. “PAC has the ruggedness of PLCs (programmable logic
controllers) and the software capabilities of PCs,” says NI CEO James Truchard.
PACs also have multi-function capabilities, such as logic, motion control and
many others, and they also employ as many industry standards as possible. NI’s
LabView software is “a superset of PAC,” supporting a range of hardware targets,
he adds. As part of the focus on this emerging field, Truchard is also
emphasizing a new thrust to make NI tools easier to use.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
Robots that walk have come a long way from simple barebones walking machines or pairs of legs without an upper body and head. Much of the research these days focuses on making more humanoid robots. But they are not all created equal.
The IEEE Computer Society has named the top 10 trends for 2014. You can expect the convergence of cloud computing and mobile devices, advances in health care data and devices, as well as privacy issues in social media to make the headlines. And 3D printing came out of nowhere to make a big splash.
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.