HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
Feature
Automation & Motion Control

The Evolution of Packaging Controls

NO RATINGS
< Previous Page 2 / 3 Next >
View Comments: Oldest First|Newest First|Threaded View
Page 1/2  >  >>
Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Welcome standardization
Rob Spiegel   9/7/2012 8:53:09 AM
NO RATINGS
It's good to see yet another step toward standardization on the factory floor. This is one more step away from hodge-podge world of plant automation. I would guess this will also give control engineers some relief from the daunting task of original programming.

Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Standards seem to be a must here
Beth Stackpole   9/7/2012 8:53:31 AM
NO RATINGS
It's actually amazing to me that there hasn't been a common HMI look and feel and standards prior to this kind of effort--or at least one that has any teeth. Coordinating that diversity must be a bear for organizations to manage let alone impeding worker productivity. Why has it taken so long to push standards?

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Ann R. Thryft   9/7/2012 11:42:53 AM
NO RATINGS
HMIs are an interesting, sometimes overlooked area of focus for software/display technology improvements. Yet they play a vital part in what happens on the factory floor, and how well, and how quickly, operators can adapt to, or fix, problems in process control. It seems like improvements have been ongoing for a really long time. It's good to see that some kind of standardization is finally arriving, at least on packaging lines.

Charles Murray
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Welcome standardization
Charles Murray   9/7/2012 5:32:58 PM
NO RATINGS
Seems like OMAC has talked about this for a while, Al. Good to see it's finally happening.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Rob Spiegel   9/10/2012 12:01:37 PM
NO RATINGS
I agree it is a good thing, Ann, especially as systems are becoming increasingly complex. I would imagine this becomes a more manageable world for control engineers -- greater complexity, simpler interfaces and less original programming.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Ann R. Thryft   9/10/2012 12:46:51 PM
NO RATINGS
Rob, my understanding is that better, more use-friendly HMI systems are key for both control engineers and operators. There's a shift underway to put more decision-making into the hands of lower-cost operators rather than engineers, which is made possible by more automation of functions and databases that experienced engineers used to do, as you've mentioned several times. This is also being facilitated by better HMI systems.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Rob Spiegel   9/10/2012 3:01:55 PM
NO RATINGS
That's a new twist I was not aware of, Ann. I didn't realize the decision making was shifting to lower-cost operators. I knew vendors were relieving plant operators of the original programming that used to be part of running a plant, but I didn't realize that meant non-engineers had their hands on the controls.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Ann R. Thryft   9/11/2012 12:18:19 PM
NO RATINGS
The decision-making can shift to lower-cost operators because they're making fewer decisions--and more low-level ones--as more functions get automated. This is by no means the case everywhere, but it's yet another cost-cutting trend. That's what I've heard, anyway.

Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Rob Spiegel   9/11/2012 12:52:27 PM
NO RATINGS
I guess that shouldn't be surprising, Ann. This could be part of the trend of replacing the baby-boomer engineers at plants. As the boomers retire, I hear they are being replaced by younger workers who have less automation and control experience, but more computer experience, which is mostly appropriate given the changing nature of automation. And of course they would be lower-cost workers simply because of their youth and inexperience. 

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Standards seem to be a must here
Ann R. Thryft   9/11/2012 1:04:53 PM
NO RATINGS
Interesting, Rob. I hadn't connected the dots between the baby boomer retiring trend and younger workers with the cost-cutting trend of using less expensive operators instead of engineers on the factory floor. I'm not sure they're the same thing. First, the engineer vs operator trend is usually described as being due to improved HMI, as we were originally discussing. Plus, isn't the first trend occurring mostly within engineering?

Page 1/2  >  >>
Partner Zone
Latest Analysis
Here's a variety of views into the complex production processes at Santa's factory. Happy Holidays!
The Beam Store from Suitable Technologies is managed by remote workers from places as diverse as New York and Sydney, Australia. Employees attend to store visitors through Beam Smart Presence Systems (SPSs) from the company. The systems combine mobility and video conferencing and allow people to communicate directly from a remote location via a screen as well as move around as if they are actually in the room.
Thanks to 3D printing, some custom-made prosthetic limbs, and a Lego set, one lucky dog and a tortoise has learned new tricks.
An MIT research team has invented what they see as a solution to the need for biodegradable 3D-printable materials made from something besides petroleum-based sources: a water-based robotic additive extrusion method that makes objects from biodegradable hydrogel composites.
With Radio Shack on the ropes, let's take a memory trip through the highlights of Radio Shack products.
More:Blogs|News
Design News Webinar Series
12/11/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
12/10/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
11/19/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
11/6/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Dec 15 - 19, An Introduction to Web Application Security
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  67


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.
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service