It’s great that Chinese companies may want to buy Chrysler or GM. That’s how the free enterprise system works. Companies are priced at a fair market value in public exchanges (if they’re publicly held) and then anyone with the cash can buy them, just like any products are bought and sold a la Adam Smith. IBM was able to unload its no-longer viable personal computer business to Chinese investors. It’s a great way to get money back into the hands of American businesses and investors. And as John Dodge pointed out on his Facebook page, GM has a capitalization of only $1.35 billion at current stock prices. GM has a large product development center in China and Buick is one of the top-selling brands in China. Most importantly, a Chinese buyout of GM or Chrysler saves US taxpayers a lot of cash.
Divestiture of assets to foreign investors is not a great long-term strategy, however. Our weak financial situation is a result of years of deficit spending and a bulging federal debt. If you’re mad about General Motors going bust—don’t be mad at me. Be mad at your own spending and voting patterns.
To give engineers a better idea of the range of resins and polymers available as alternatives to other materials, this Technology Roundup presents several articles on engineering plastics that can do the job.
The first photos made with a 3D-printed telescope are here and they're not as fuzzy as you might expect. A team from the University of Sheffield beat NASA to the goal. The photos of the Moon were made with a reflecting telescope that cost the research team £100 to make (about $161 US).
A tiny humanoid robot has safely piloted a small plane all the way from cold start to takeoff, landing and coming to a full stop on the plane's designated runway. Yes, it happened in a pilot training simulation -- but the research team isn't far away from doing it in the real world.
Some in the US have welcomed 3D printing for boosting local economies and bringing some offshored manufacturing back onshore. Meanwhile, China is wielding its power of numbers, and its very different relationships between government, education, and industry, to kickstart a homegrown industry.
You can find out practically everything you need to know about engineering plastics as alternatives to other materials at the 2014 IAPD Plastics Expo. Admission is free for engineers, designers, specifiers, and OEMs, as well as students and faculty.
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.