Good post, Rob, and it raises a lot of issues. I'm actually reporting a story as we speak on some of the tools used to help facilitate compliance initiatives and most of the engineers/experts I'm talking to are echoing Ken's sentiments that the administrative burden of environmental compliance should not fall on the design engineer's plate. Rather, it should be the domain of an operations person or if that resource is lacking, be outsourced to a specialized consulting firm. The argument: That tracking down the increasingly complex details and paperwork that goes with this is a distraction for design engineers and takes them away from their core competency--designing good products. I'll be curious to hear others wade in.
In an age of globalization and rapid changes through scientific progress, two of our societies' (and economies') main concerns are to satisfy the needs and wishes of the individual and to save precious resources. Cloud computing caters to both of these.
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.