Updated: 7/1/06; 2:13:53 PM.
Gary Mintchell's Feed Forward
Manufacturing and Leadership.

Monday, June 5, 2006

Just saw another news item about valuable personal data lost along with a laptop. When I was in the gate area at the Orlando airport last Thursday, heard an announcement "Whoever found a laptop computer at gate 104 please return to owner at gate 105." Bet that one never shows up. Just another reminder for us absent-minded people to take extra care with your hardware.
7:06:19 PM    comment []

I'm standing by my analysis of Apple as a great hardware designer and a mediocre hardware engineer. A few months ago I tried interviewing Todd Walter of National Instruments after setting up a Skype account and using Audio HiJack Pro. The microphone on the headset worked, but not the speakers. Thought the problem was the jack for speakers on my PowerBook G4. Bought headset number three--a USB model. Tried it out with Skype. Seemed to work. Tested recording through Audio HiJack Pro. Made a recording. Tried talking with Todd again yesterday--speakers went dead on the headset again. After a couple more hours spent on troubleshooting (rebooting, the whole thing) my headset still doesn't work. Microphone, yes; speakers, no. The USB ports work with other things. This is a frustrating problem. Not to mention Todd, who made two appointments--and still no Podcast. I'll interview him in Austin in August with my trusty iRiver mp3 player/recorder.

Meanwhile, I have no idea what's up with this Macintosh headset problem.
5:47:57 PM    comment []

Saw a note about the award of a Shigo Prize for excellence in Lean Manufacturing. Z Corp., maker of 3D printers, has won the 2006 Bronze Medal of the Northeast Shingo Prize for Excellence in Manufacturing. The Shingo prize is administered by the Greater Boston Manufacturing Partnership at the College of Management (GBMP) at the University of Massachusetts, Boston.

The company produces high-definition color 3D printers--machines that produce 3D physical models of real-world objects.

Z Corp. employs such lean manufacturing tools and techniques as single-piece flow, customer-driven production, standardized work, kanban and "quality at the source." Since 2003, the processes have enabled a 300 percent increase in output, a 45 percent increase in productivity and increased inventory turns by more than 50 percent. All with an on-time delivery rate of 95 percent.

5:10:21 PM    comment []

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