August 2013

Industrial Designs That Matter: A Bomb-Proof Backpack for Children

Hila Raam-Rhino Skin

It’s hard to imagine living with the constant fear that you or your child might be struck down by a stray mortar shell or rocket at any time. Yet for the many civilians located close to conflict zones around the world this is a daily reality. Israeli Hila Raam knows this all too well. A bright young industrial designer and …

Posted in Gadgets, Innovation, Technology | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Print Your 3D Twin

3D printed figure from Twinkind

Tired of looking at that old figurine on your mantel? No problem. Now you can print off a miniature 3D replica of yourself and display it in your home or give it as a gift to your favorite friends and relatives. Thanks to a German company called Twinkind anyone can order a miniature statue of themselves or their beloved pet. …

Posted in Advanced Manufacturing, Innovation, Technology | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Should Offshore Manufacturing be counted as U.S. Production?

Outsourced manufacturing

Globalization has had such a dramatic impact on manufacturing in the United States that federal agencies are considering changing the way they define and measure U.S. output and production. A new manufacturing classification, which may be implemented as early as 2017, according to the August 20 edition of Manufacturing and Technology News, could mean wholesalers that outsource their production are …

Posted in Industry News, Industry News, Manufacturing | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Degree Programs Target Supply Chain Management Shortfall

Supply-chain management degrees

Forget about finance and venture capitalism. One of today’s hottest M.B.A.s is supply chain management. And while it may not sound all that sexy, the long-term prospects for growth in this area, along with a hefty salary, have made this a popular subject choice for undergraduates and M.B.A. candidates alike. Globalization has led to rapid growth in the supply chain …

Posted in Connections, Education, Workforce | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Smart Products and Services Eclipse Old-Style Manufacturing


Things are looking up for the Big Three auto makers. Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler all posted a significant uptick in July sales. But the old-style factories of the Detroit golden era have long since gone, and they’re not coming back, at least according to a recent article in The Washington Times. Whether we like it or not, globalization has been …

Posted in Connections, Connections, Insights | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Vending Machines Dispense Bicycle Helmets in Boston


A green solution to traffic congestion and carbon emissions, bike-sharing programs have become ubiquitous in crowded cities worldwide, letting users check out bicycles from kiosks to commute, ride across town, or sightsee. But even as it’s helping solve one problem, bike-sharing has created another: It’s put bicycle riders on city streets without figuring out a way to loan them helmets. …

Posted in Gadgets, Innovation, Technology | Tagged | 1 Comment

Indiana and Oregon among Top Manufacturing States

Electronics manufacturing

July was a good month for U.S. manufacturers, with business conditions improving and 6,000 net jobs added to the sector, according to the Institute for Supply Management (ISM). The Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) showed some positive movement too, increasing by 4.5 percent in July to 55.4 percent, thanks in part to a recovering housing market and healthy sales in the …

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New Conflict Minerals Rule, EU and Canada to Follow

Congo Mining

As the May 2014 deadline approaches for the first conflict minerals filings in the United States, manufacturers are establishing best practices for dealing with the new rules. There’s a laundry list of observers watching the process closely, expecting that there will be many lessons learned. The European Union (EU) and Canada may be among the more interested observers, as each …

Posted in Industry News, Industry News, Supply Chain & Compliance | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

AP Tech Courses Provide Head Start for Minority Students

Photo courtesy of the College Board

WOODSTOCK, Georgia—Students at River Ridge High School tinker with 30 Honda engines and use computers lined against the walls to study the engines’ mechanics. At first glance, this might look like shop class. But it’s much more sophisticated than that. It’s an Advanced Placement course in physics, and it’s brand new this fall, part of a privately funded, nationwide drive …

Posted in Education, Future Engineers, Workforce | Tagged , | 6 Comments

3D Printed Bones Fast Becoming Reality

3D Printed Skull, University of Nottingham

3D printing has grown from a niche manufacturing process to a $2.7-billion industry over the past two decades, and now scientists are working to apply 3D printing technology to the field of medicine by printing with living cells. More sophisticated printers and software, and advances in regenerative medicine have made this possible. Kevin Shakeshaff, a professor of pharmacy at the …

Posted in Industry News, Innovation, Medical Devices | Tagged , , | 3 Comments