News Feature | July 7, 2014

Manufacturing And Warehousing News For VARs — July 7, 2014

By Trisha Leon, contributing writer

Manufacturing And Warehousing News

In the news, manufacturing indicators show business is stable and getting stronger, and researchers have developed a wireless network on a computer chip that could reduce energy consumption in large data farms by up to 20 percent.

Manufacturing Numbers Strong In June

In the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business cited in Manufacturing.net, economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in June for the 13th consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 61st consecutive month. ISM’s New Orders Index registered 58.9 percent in June, an increase of 2 percentage points when compared to the 56.9 percent reported in May. “New orders being up is really a great sign, relative to its own index,” says Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, chair of the ISM Business Survey Committee. “Production at 60 is still a very high number for any of these indexes, even though it’s down a point from last month. Everything is at really remarkably strong numbers.” Holcomb indicates that there aren’t any specific concerns facing manufacturing right now and that the opposite is more likely. Business volumes are stable and are getting stronger, depending upon the specific industry, but all pointing in the right direction.

Researchers Develop Wireless Network With Decreased Energy Consumption Rate

A team, which includes associate professors Deukhyoun Heo and Benjamin Belzer, led by Partha Pande, a computer engineering professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Washington State University has developed a wireless network on a computer chip that could reduce energy consumption at huge data farms by as much as 20 percent. According to Tina Hilding of R&D, while portable devices are efficiently wireless, the data farms that provide instant availability to text messages, video downloads, and more still use conventional metal wires on computer chips. These are wasteful for relatively long-range data exchange. The network–on-a-chip technology uses wireless shortcuts to communicate between distant points on the computer chip. These single-hop shortcuts bypass intermediary nodes and directly connect one node to another, which results in less energy loss and higher data transfer speed.

White House Holds First “Maker Faire”

Stacy Anderson of the Associated Press reports on President Obama’s tour on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, June 18, 2014, to meet with students, entrepreneurs, and inventors, during the first White House “Maker Faire.” “New tools and technologies are making the building of things easier than ever,” Obama said. “There is a democratization of manufacturing that is potentially available because of technology.” Obama promoted the use of new tools and techniques to start up new businesses and boost manufacturing.

Manufacturing And Warehousing IT Talking Points

The economic downturn over the past several years has forced industrial companies to significantly reduce structural and operational costs by cutting indiscriminately and often into the muscle while remaining vigilant about cost optimization, proactively managing growth through productivity-focused actions, adding shifts when needed, and paying overtime to workers. Manufacturers face a rocky road ahead, but the companies that survive — or actually thrive —will be those that have clear capabilities systems tied directly to cost structures that differentiate them from their competitors. According to Industry Week’s Marian Mueller and Matthew Siegel, though, cost cutting is not enough. “A company becomes ready for growth through strategic clarity, resource alignment, and supporting organizations. Armed with that information, it can make more informed decisions about cutting costs in places that are not driving its competitive advantage, directly enabling the growth agenda in a much more effective way.” In the article “Linking Cost Reduction and Growth Strategies Drives Financial Success,” they detail how businesses can build competitive advantage that wins in the marketplace.

For more news and insights, visit BSMinfo’s Manufacturing And Warehousing Tech Center.

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