2018-05-28 3 min read


Planning & Strategy.

Making & Manufacturing.

  • A patent for being sure how much you've polished a workpiece by first scribing marks of known depths and then periodically checking to see whether you've polished off the scribe marks.
  • Additive Works' new Amphyon release claims to "include an automated process for first-time-right support generation for Laser Beam Melting." This is some highly multidimensional optimization; I'd be interested to hear reviews.

Maintenance, Repair & Operations.

  • NYC Transit's new chief, Andy Byford, unveiled a big plan to upgrade all of NYC's lines to CBTC, buy a bunch of new cars, and make a series of ADA compliance and other upgrades. Both Emma Fitzsimmons' (NYT) and Dan Rivoli's (Daily News) coverage of this is good. I also recommend Aaron Gordon's Signal Problems this week, which includes additional MTA & NYC politics updates.
  • Related, the MTA's elevators continue to not work well, partly due to the fact that the agency has over a hundred unfilled elevator repair positions unfilled. "The number of elevator installer and repairer positions in the metropolitan area increased from just below 2,500 workers in 2012 to about 3,800 in 2016. During that time, hourly base wages in the private sector increased as the MTA’s wages remained flat. By 2016, there was about a $9 difference — $43.39 in the private sector, compared to $34.50 at the MTA."

Distribution & Logistics.

Inspection, Testing & Analysis.

  • Although they publicly maintained the opposite for years, "one of the major concerns Apple identified prior to launching the [iPhone 6 and 6 Plus] was that they were ‘likely to bend more easily when compared to previous generations.'"
  • Apparently Ford's Chariot vans (which are often seen around Greenpoint, Brooklyn and which seem to target yuppie commuters who have inconvenient subway commutes) are driving around mostly (or completely) empty. Worse yet, they have to contend with traffic on the Williamsburg Bridge - which routinely sucks.


NASA's Curiosity drilled its first hole in Mars since October 2016.

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