I’ve just come back from the AGMA annual meeting in Napa, California, where I had a great time visiting with friends and colleagues in the gear industry. As always, the annual meeting was a great opportunity to network and meet with other AGMA members.
I enjoy these meetings, as they allow me to catch up with many of the people I’ve done business with over the years— both as a machine tool dealer and as publisher of Gear Technology. In many ways, going to these meetings is like going home. Everyone is familiar with everyone, and you can pick up on conversations that began decades ago.
Naturally, Gear Technology has a lot of fans in that environment. I almost always come home with a few “attaboys” and pats on the back for the work we’ve done over the years. This issue marks our 31st anniversary, and many of the people who attend AGMA’s annual meeting have been reading Gear Technology since it began in 1984. They all know about our dedication to publishing the most relevant, accurate and up to date information available on gear manufacturing. They know we’re unique in the industry in that we are gear people that got into publishing, not the other way around. They also know we have a crew of technical editors who are the knowledgeable giants in the industry, who help us by checking the accuracy and relevance of our technical articles before they’re published.
Every once in a while, I am surprised to learn that even among our biggest fans, readers often aren’t aware of the ways Gear Technology has changed and grown over the years. Sure, they know us for our technical articles, and they value the credibility we offer. At this year’s meeting, I sat down with a colleague who has been a long-time reader of Gear Technology. This is a reader who has saved every issue of the magazine— since the beginning—as part of his personal gear library. He’s definitely a fan, but his idea of who we are today and what Gear Technology represents was perhaps a little dated. When he and I got to talking about geartechnology.com and how all of our technical articles are available for free online, he was quite impressed.
“I didn’t know you did that,” my friend told me.
I was surprised that he was surprised. But I guess I shouldn’t be. Those of you who have known me for a long time—or who are long-time readers of this column—have probably heard one of my favorite sayings: “Being good at something and not telling anyone is like winking in the dark. You know what you’re doing, but nobody else does.”
Even though I know we make an effort to publicize the capabilities of our website, I realize now that maybe we’ve been winking in the dark.
So I’m going to take this opportunity to explain it to you. Go to our website. Find the search box (it’s at the top of every page). Type something—anything—in the box. Say you want to find articles on bevel gears, the involute curve or ISO 6336. Just type in what you’re looking for and the archive will give you a list of relevant matches from our 31-year publishing history.
I’ve talked to a number of gear engineers who use this feature regularly, so I know it’s valuable. But only if you know it’s there.
We’ve recently completed a major redesign of the website in an effort to make it easier to use, no matter what size screen you’re looking at. Everything automatically resizes to fit your screen even if you’re surfing on a cell phone. Another major feature of the new design takes place behind the scenes. When you find something on our site that interests you, you’ll now find related articles and news items just a click away. All of our content is connected via keywords and subject focus areas. We hope this makes it even easier than ever for you to find the gear-related content that’s relevant to you.
So here I am, winking in plain view. That’s your cue to go to the website and explore. We’d love to know what you think. And you might be surprised at how much information is really at your fingertips.
Michael Goldstein, Publisher & Editor-in-Chief, began his career in the gear industry in 1964, when he joined his father at Cadillac Machinery Co., Inc. As a machine tool dealer specializing in Gleason bevel gear machines, Michael rose to prominence in the industry, with leadership roles in the Machinery Dealers National Association (MDNA), as well as the European Association of Machine Tool Merchants (EAMTM). He founded Gear Technology in 1984, and has been involved with the American Gear Manufacturers Association (AGMA) throughout his career. [50 years in the gear industry]