All Posts By

Brian Raymond

Senate Passes Critical Intellectual Property Legislation

By | Shopfloor Main, Shopfloor Policy, Technology, Trade | No Comments

Tonight the U.S. Senate took a huge step toward protecting manufacturing products and processes from the current onslaught of intellectual property (IP) theft by passing the Defend Trade Secrets Act. NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement after the bill’s passage, citing the important role IP has for manufacturers of all sizes:

“Manufacturers in America are the world leaders in innovation. The know-how to perfect their products can take years, even decades. These days, a competitor can steal that knowledge with the click of a mouse, costing a company good-paying jobs or even its entire business. This is a critical issue facing manufacturers, one that will define competition and success in the 21st century. That’s why we need all the tools possible to protect the superior knowledge and products that set our industry apart.

“IP can comprise up to 80 percent of the value of a company’s knowledge portfolio, and theft of these resources costs U.S. businesses roughly $250 billion a year. Manufacturers need a strong, unified federal policy that will enforce strict laws to protect what many businesses consider their most valued corporate assets. Today’s vote is a step toward updating our laws and helping manufacturers prevent IP theft aggressively and efficiently.

“We support Senate passage of the Defend Trade Secrets Act and urge the House to take swift action to get this legislation to the president’s desk for his signature.”

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NAM Member ABB Highlights Role of Internet of Things in Manufacturing

By | Innovation, Shopfloor Main, Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

Digital technology is changing the landscape of how the world makes things. More and more often, terms like “advanced manufacturing” and “smart” work are being used to describe the latest era in our sector. But what does “advanced manufacturing” mean? What affect is it having on the supply chain? On jobs? On our laws? Greg Scheu, executive committee member of ABB Group and president of ABB Americas Region, joined lawmakers, administration officials and technology experts in Washington, D.C., this week to discuss those questions.

The goal of advanced manufacturing, according to Scheu, is using technology to provide a competitive advantage—helping grow their business, service their customers and compete globally. Connected products and processes—or the Internet of Things—are helping manufacturers become more efficient in their processes and develop a broader, more customizable array of products to offer.  Read More

Senate “Internet of Things” Legislation Makes Manufacturers a Partner in Innovation Policy

By | Innovation, Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

Yesterday, four senators rolled out a bipartisan bill that, if passed, would form an Internet of Things (IoT) working group at the Department of Commerce. The legislation, the Developing Innovation and Growing the Internet of Things (DIGIT) Act was introduced by Sens. Deb Fischer (R-NE), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Brian Schatz (D-HI). The bill would require Commerce to create a working group that would give Congress recommendations on how best to encourage IoT growth.  Read More

Laws Need to Keep Up with Innovation in Manufacturing

By | Shopfloor Main, Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

We are living in the world of modern manufacturing.  Walk in to a manufacturing facility on any given day and you will see state-of-the-art technology seamlessly integrated with manufacturing products and processes.  Much of this is being driven by the proliferation of connected devices—known as the Internet of Things (IoT)—which is increasing efficiency and product quality across the supply chain. Read More

President’s Budget Request Agrees with Manufacturers on Cybersecurity

By | Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

The president’s budget request for fiscal 2017 was released this morning and covered a number of issues grabbing the attention of our nation’s manufacturers. While there were a number of shortcomings in the budget, which you can read about here, the proposal did address the important area of cybersecurity and the need to address the serious threats facing our critical infrastructure.

Manufacturers take this threat very seriously as they are the owners, operators and makers of our nation’s most critical assets. They factor in the cyber threats they face from all over the globe at the beginning of the design process of their products and processes. And now, with the exponential growth of the transformative connected technology known as the “Internet of Things” pervasive throughout all industry sectors, manufacturers are now even more keenly aware of the need to secure their enterprise. Read More

CES: A Crossroad Between Policy and Innovation

By | Innovation, Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

The 2016 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is not just the largest technology convention in the United States; it’s the largest convention in the United States period. According to International CES, which is owned and produced by NAM member Consumer Technology Association (CTA), more than 3,600 companies will exhibit and launch in the ballpark of 20,000 products this week from the show.  Read More

Building Partnerships in Innovation

By | Innovation, Shopfloor Main, Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

picThe Internet of Things (IoT) is transforming manufacturing—from connecting machines on the shop floor to the end-use products. This concept of interconnectedness has enabled owners and operators in our sector to gather critical data that allows them to improve product design, troubleshoot in real-time and make manufacturing an even more integral partners with their customers throughout the lifecycle of their product. Today’s manufacturers continue to find ways to embed the latest technologies into their products and processes. With an eye toward the future, NAM member Caterpillar—a 90-year-old company—has begun to seek partnerships with technology startups to help better understand and take advantage of ideas coming out of the gate.
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House Judiciary Committee to Discuss Email Privacy

By | Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

The current law governing the privacy of electronic communication and how law enforcement accesses it was written in 1986. That law, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, or ECPA, will turn 30 years old next year. The House Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing tomorrow on the need to update that legislation to reflect the dramatic change technology has undergone since the age of dial-up modems and fax machines. Read More

Government Should Help Accelerate the Internet of Cars

By | Shopfloor Policy, Technology | No Comments

Some say the biggest purchase you will make in your lifetime other than a home is a vehicle. These significant investments are no longer just four wheels and an engine, they are highly sophisticated pieces of connected technology making life safer and easier for individuals and businesses all over the world. The auto industry has consistently pushed the boundaries of innovation to deliver these breakthroughs for their customers. Today, two NAM members from that segment were on Capitol Hill discussing what it will take for the benefits of this innovation to continue. Read More