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Technical Side

Comments on "Tech Changes Affecting Your Career Now, part 2 of 3"



Jim,

All I can say to this article is "Amen." I cannot begin to tell you how many hundreds of times I have been troubleshooting equipment, standing in front of the piece of equipment and I cannot get in touch with the Control Room over the radio because others are cutting in with their own issues – think startup after a maintenance down. About 10 years ago, I hoped for some sort of wrist computer (think the movie “Predator”) that I could use to communicate with the DCS. Start, stop, valve position, automatic, manual, process variables, all of these are critical pieces of information to have in my hand would be a Godsend.

I think we have only one real obstacle…. We are talking about electronics and working in the field in a paper mill. I have yet to find a phone or a phone cover that will last after a direct hit by a water hose. That would be the next leap in technology.

Just my two cents,

Andrew Hansen
Conyers, Georgia
USA

***

Dear Jim

Interesting thoughts

Re "Of course, the next step after that is to be able to use your phone to control processes. This may be a bit more ticklish and needs to be thought through, but it may actually reverse the trend of the last couple of decades of putting operators in a control room."

We already do this in our music production as it allows one person to engineer sound from anywhere in the room…very useful when setting up PA in a hurry…of course it comes down to robustness/safety of control lines and consequences of failure

I see a big role for mobile techs and social media in assisting creating/facilitating safety cultures …I’m hoping to talk my org into running a trial on this…very do-able…be interesting to see if/ how the workplace responds

The innovation time in ICT is ~2weeks [or less]…probably 10 years for materials and engineering

Cheers,

Richard Helmer
CSIRO
Australia

PS: in passing I'm working on some techs that are useful for monitoring work-place health and activities of employees…if you know any co.s wanting to trial some stuff let me know.

---

If you want to get in touch with Richard, send me an email at jthompson@taii.com and I'll pass it along.

Jim

***

Jim

...One of the benefits of the central control room was the ability to glance around at the panels (or at 4 or more computer screens) and get a "feel" for how things are going. Not sure how that is going to sort out if the controls are on a cell phone. Hey, how about three or four industrial strength IPads with custom control apps?

Gene Canavan
Prattville, Alabama
USA

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