Thanks, Beth, great slideshow. The convergence of 3D printing and content tools gets my vote for the most interesting ones. Cloud and social networking stuff get a lot of buzz, but I guess I'm still as skeptical as many of those veteran engineers. The ones I think will be most important are the less flashy, less buzzy ones: systems engineering--it's a long time coming--and product analytics. Both are far-reaching in both implementation and implications, and they're interrelated, as well.
Nice slide show, Beth. The one that will be fun to watch is the development of social media in the design process. In a story you did recently, you talked about design engineers taking cues from a group outside the actual design process. Now that idea was new.
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.