MT Magazine January/February 2024




Manufacturing Matters Check in for the highlights, headlines, and hijinks that matter to manufacturing. These lean news items keep you updated on the latest developments.


Forget Talking — Just Let Us Click and Buy The pressure is on the manufacturing industry to produce more, and manufacturers are quickly moving to advanced technologies to keep pace with customer demand. But receiving finished goods is only one part of the customer’s journey, and the life-cycle starts further upstream. Purchasing in manufacturing, which has shifted to asynchronous processes, can drastically affect delivery time of a product, and embracing a more digital approach throughout its life will accelerate time to delivery. To support these behaviors, a factory will need a digital infrastructure, robot process automation, security, and intellectual property measures to be in place for the entire value stream. While you might naturally focus your digital efforts on the factory floor, don’t forget about the systems upstream.


Digital Manufacturing Peers Into the Future Digital manufacturing is about the future, literally and figuratively. When speaking about digital manufacturing, we are talking about employing computers using discrete building blocks of information, zeros and ones, as switches in a system where logic is applied to create, store, transform, and transmit information. In contrast, analog systems handle information as waves, which computers are far less capable of utilizing efficiently. Therefore, digital applications in manufacturing, as well as in many other sectors, are preferred over their analog counterparts because they are more scalable, accurate, and configurable. Advances in these concepts literally move the industry into the future. Figuratively speaking, the application of digital technologies in manufacturing offers predictability or insight into the future as well. The processes needed to make statistical inferences for automated decision-making usually require the collection and analysis of large amounts of data. Unlike most other industries, the nature of manufacturing operations lends itself well to the creation of sufficiently large volumes of data needed for that glimpse into the future.


Rev Up Your Presence! IMTS Exhibitors Dive In to Smartforce at IMTS 2024 Don’t miss out on shaping the next-gen manufacturing tech workforce at the Smartforce Student Summit at IMTS 2024, where thousands of educators, administrators, and students will gather from across North America. IMTS exhibitors: Snag your spot now at the hottest venue and show off your tech, solutions, and training gear to the education market. Be part of inspiring, educating, and lifting the industry by connecting with top-tier students, aspiring talent, and tomorrow’s innovators. Hurry – space is limited!

Visit for details or contact Catherine “Cat” Ross at to take the wheel and steer the next innovation wave. Let’s make waves together!

P.S. Let your local MFG educators know: Schools attend IMTS for free! Registration for educators and students opens in February.

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