Mike Campbell is an executive VP for CAD at PTC. He's also a member of the Design News Advisory Board. When I met with Mike a few weeks ago (oddly, we live/work fairly close to each other, but met in Germany), he sent over a few links to videos that PTC had created to highlight the features of its Creo design software.
I agreed to look at the videos. But to be honest, I get lots of these types of video where a vendor is pitching his product, and didn't have high expectations. The first two (of three) videos were really well done. However, they still fell into that "pitch" category. However, the third video really made me sit up and take notice. It still talks about Creo and how it was used by this OEM, but it was really compelling. It's a video about a company called College Park. Based in Detroit, they develop high-tech prosthetics.
The video looks at a few individuals who have made use of the College Park product to lead perfectly normal lives, if you consider motorcycle racing, snowboarding, and mountain climbing normal. It's a five-minute video, and I think you'll be glad you watched.
What an inspiring video. This has to be the most rewarding field of engineering. Not every engineer can have a job with such an immediate visible payback, but the engineers who do this work can easily see the difference they make in people's lives. Great video.
The video is excellent but the star is Reggie Showers "World's Fastest Amputee". He is very well-spoken and has an unbelievably great attitude. What an example of overcoming adversity. Wow. Thanks for the link.
Speaking of rewarding; the design aspect alone is inspiring, indeed. I remember when I first started out, I made a promise that I wanted to work in a field that helped people, (as opposed to weapons & munitions which was an opportunity I decided to pass)
But beyond design inspiration, I was amazed at the images of the production facility at College Park. I mistakenly imagined prosthesis centers as little labs with a small staff of designers hand-crafting the elements; but that place was like a automotive production center. The operations manager talked about the multiple combinations of elements (stated 460,000 differentiation's possible!) Impressive logistics as well as inspiring design.
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.