Next year, farmers in Colorado will be able to fix their own tractors, and manufacturers will have to provide them with resources to help them do it. In late April, Colorado became the first state to ensure farmers can work on their own equipment with Governor Jared Polis signing “The Consumer Right to Repair Agriculture Equipment Act,” which forces manufacturers to make available the necessary manuals, tools, parts, and software to farmers who rely on complex and expensive machinery, such as tractors, combines, and other farm equipment.
Where there’s war, there’s a combat engineer (sapper) waiting in the wings to construct fortifications, build strategic roads or blow up enemy fortresses. For as long as humanity has been fighting, engineers have risked their own lives carrying out vital tasks on the battlefield.
Player Piano serves as a cautionary tale and remains relevant in the age of automation as it addresses the issues of technological progress and the impact of replacing human labor and the resulting loss of purpose and meaning in life. It highlights the consequences of relying too heavily on machines and the need to find a balance between progress and preserving the human spirit. The novel remains relevant as discussions around the future of work, job loss due to automation, and the ethics of artificial intelligence continue to be important topics in today’s society.
Trade show swag. It’s everywhere on the show floor—chocolates, plastic toys, T-shirts, free popcorn. As a frequent attendee to manufacturing and engineering events, most industrial professionals would agree we don’t need additional fountain pens. If you really want to grab attention at your trade show booth, why not offer beer?
With our zeitgeist of presentism—the judging of the past through the lens of current standards—it’s refreshing if not essential to know the past was not entirely without figures who not only exceeded the standards of their time but even those of today. At a time when women’s suffrage was in its nascency, Catherine “Kate” Anselm Gleason (1865–1933) helped stage what would become the Gleason Corporation in the global cutting tools industry as a sales engineer for her family’s gear-cutting machinery business.
The mere mention of artificial intelligence (AI) often conjures one dystopian vision or another—perhaps the prime example of all is the HAL 9000 going spectacularly awry in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. The prospect of the widespread adoption of AI is understandably alarming to people in a host of ways, but be that as it may, various forms of it are already a central part of how things are done—from finance to health care, from heavy machinery to retail—and the reason for this is simple: AI allows computers to do things people can’t unassisted, and by pairing algorithmic accuracy with automation, this helps save valuable time and resources. However, as AI and other control mechanisms affecting systems grow increasingly sophisticated, the human link to these processes becomes critical.
Noncircular gears are not a mere mathematical curiosity with limited practical utility. They were first sketched by Leonardo da Vinci around 1500 and have since found their way into a variety of useful applications. In the 18th century, noncircular gears were used in flow pumps, clocks, music boxes, toys, and other devices. Early publications on the gear type in the 19th century by Hamnet Holditch (1842), Henry T. Brown (1871), and Franz Reuleaux (1875) helped evolve the field of kinematics. First introduced by Uno Ollson in his book Non-Circular Bevel Gear in 1959, the noncircular bevel gear has remained obscure due to the complex geometry. Even though more and more publications are available on noncircular gears, the knowledge is, especially compared to cylindrical gears, still very limited. But in the last decade, there has been an increased interest in the field of noncircular gears due to certain advantages they have over circular gears.
When it comes to noise, vibration and harshness (NVH), I’m reminded of that dog-van scene from Dumb and Dumber where Jim Carrey says, “Want to hear the most annoying sound in the world?” and then proceeds to emit an astonishingly awful noise. Annoying as NVH may be, it’s a key metric in drive-system development for e-mobility, and the careful design and manufacture of gears are crucial to minimizing NVH as tolerance variations can result in large differences between nominally identical components.