Communication network of transportation

Design Insights: From Point A to Point B; And on to Edge Computing; IDEA! Awards Entry Deadline is July 9

June 21, 2021
A review of the day’s top trending stories from Machine Design editors.

From Point A to Point B

Remember the sixth-grade math problem about trains leaving two different stations at two different times? It turns out there are some real-life applications to that riddle, and researchers have developed a way to better way to solve it. And the solution is somewhat more low-tech than you might expect.

Network analysis can address everything from how viruses spread in populations, to choosing the most efficient route to go to several points in a network (such as roadways or railways), to calculating the fewest number of mutations needed to transform one string of DNA into another.

Researchers at the National Institute of Technology (NIST) developed electronic hardware that replicates the network’s architecture. Akin to an analog computer, it then applies race logic to rapidly solve a variety of complex puzzles with a minimum expenditure of energy compared to general-purpose computers.

The Machine Design story that explains the concept of race theory to analyze the fastest route a truck might travel, but it also can be used to analyze other computational models while using a different computer model.

And on to Edge Computing

Edge Computing allows more plant floor computations to be made closer to the machine, resulting in faster and more secure network operations. A new FAQ series presented by Machine Design and Stratus discusses how to leverage edge computing in your machine design. Among the solutions discussed are how edge computing:

  • helps reduce cost through workload consolidation
  • improves performance by preventing downtime 
  • secures machines by providing protection from cyber attacks
  • increases resiliency through built-in redundancy.

Download your FAQ by clicking on this link.

IDEA! Awards Entry Deadline is July 9

The deadline to enter the 2021 IDEA! Awards is less than three weeks away. 2021 IDEA! Awards will highlight the top innovative products created in the last year. The awards program is a showcase for new engineering solutions. It’s also provides great value for everyone who enters.

For a $500 entry fee, IDEA! Awards entrants receive:

  • A ¼-page article and image in the August issues of Machine Design and Hydraulics & Pneumatics to discuss the merits of the product;
  • A spot in the online version of the IDEA! Awards, which will include a link to the reader ballot. Only qualified engineers will vote on the IDEA! Awards, meaning your product will be judged by the people who also use the products each day.
  • Marking collateral, which will identify your product and company as an "IDEA! Awards Finalist."
  • A chance to be voted one of the top products in your category, which will include an invitation to receive your awards during the IDEA! Conference Nov 9-11 in Cleveland.

Also announced at that time will be the winner of the Big IDEA! Award, presented to the product with the single highest number of votes from all product categories.

Get your entry in today. Also, please plan to join us at the 2021 IDEA! Conference in Cleveland. It will be three days of great information and an opportunity to reconnect after more than a year apart.

Click here for a link to the entry form. It’s important to act soon: Entry deadline is July 9 at 5 p.m. CST.

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