Rob, Any time there is any data integration with the Internet, IT is going to be concerned and hopefully take all of the appropriate measures necessary to insure the quality and security of that connection.
Chuck, I think the key is probably taking data integration to the next level. The capability to customize products to "one" is definitely within reach already. Moving to the cloud provides a potential input for manufacturing that potentially simplifies the solutions for easier data integration. Also, a direct input from the customer.
Looks like a good idea for manufacturers, Al. This takes us closer to mass customization. The key here is that a manufacturer will not be limited to what its local servers can deliver. I would guess that cloud technology will allow companies to expand and contract their IT needs as needed. However, this may be a new hurdle in the path toward compatibility between control engineers and their IT departments. Cloud providers will have to make a strong case for security.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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