Industry 4.0: Beware of the vendor wonderland

I recently came across a post explaining why it is urgent to start going Industry 4.0 with collecting big data. The rationale is built on the example of social media companies who base their business model on big data and paved the way to industry at large. The pitch Just as the social media companies … Continue reading Industry 4.0: Beware of the vendor wonderland

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Smart Factories: Converting workers into problem solvers?

Smart factories, industry 4.0, IIoT and everything else covered by the digital transformation umbrella raises fear about the future of human jobs, or to be more specific, the income source of employees. To my surprise some promoters of these factories of the future have a ridiculously simple solution: convert the actual workers into process supervisors … Continue reading Smart Factories: Converting workers into problem solvers?

Factory of the future is a misnomer

There is a real hype around the “of the future” nowadays (we write November 2017) in France. Everything seems to be “of the future” and it started with the factories supposed to soon buzz with the sound of toiling robots and frantic printing 3D printers. “of the future” sounds great, full of promises of extraordinary … Continue reading Factory of the future is a misnomer

Can Industry 4.0 rejuvenate Total Productive Maintenance?

In this post: TPM in a nutshell Linking Industry 4.0 (smart factories) to TPM TPM autonomous maintenance in 4.0 environment Can Industry 4.0 rejuvenate Total Productive Maintenance? The youngest among my blog readers may not understand what I mean with Total Productive Maintenance, this pre-Lean management approach to maximize machines and equipment effectiveness and aiming … Continue reading Can Industry 4.0 rejuvenate Total Productive Maintenance?

The cobot controversy part 2

The new robots arrive, the humans remain This post is a personal reflection about a statement of German Labor Union “IG Metall” posted on the union’s Website https://www.igmetall.de/robotik-tagung-2015-17975.htm titled “The new robots arrive, the humans remain” (Published November 26th, 2015 and still online June 2017). About IG Metall: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IG_Metall The IG Metall article is in German … Continue reading The cobot controversy part 2

The cobot controversy – Part 1

“The cobot controversy” is the title of a short article published by and on the Hannover Messe (“Hannover Fair”, the industry exhibition) website. http://www.hannovermesse.de/en/news/the-cobot-controversy.xhtml The article can be read in English as well as in German (assumed original version). This article proposes a “balanced” view about the impact of the collaborative robots (cobots) on the … Continue reading The cobot controversy – Part 1

What is Industry 4.0 – Juergen Kanz

"Industry 4.0" was coined in Germany and is becoming the European name of what is also known as Smart Factory, Smart Manufacturing, Industrial Internet among others. Note: German and French write "industrie" instead of "industry" In this slightly more than one hour video, Juergen Kanz, Systemic Thinker and Theory of Constraints expert, introduces to the … Continue reading What is Industry 4.0 – Juergen Kanz

Is 3D printing the ultimate postponement? Part two

In the previous post of this series, I used somewhat extreme examples to illustrate the benefits of postponement with additive manufacturing i.e. 3D printing (space exploration, ships amidst oceans and warfare). In this post I use more common examples about how the promises of these new techniques will disrupt existing businesses and bring new benefits … Continue reading Is 3D printing the ultimate postponement? Part two

Is 3D printing the ultimate postponement? – Part one

Imagine the first habitable base on mars. Your challenge is to pack the first cargo spaceship with all the necessary for the staff to face all maintenance issues, until the next cargo spaceship can lift up, say three months later. Chances are you’ll include a 3D printer and enough of printer’s raw material, simply because … Continue reading Is 3D printing the ultimate postponement? – Part one

Future of Lean and additive manufacturing

In a previous post titled “How much non-added value additive manufacturing can take out of actual processes?” my prospective thinking was all about technological disruptions and the impact on companies. The same question is valid for the future of Lean. If as I assume much of the non-added value can be taken out of actual … Continue reading Future of Lean and additive manufacturing