Lean – Super-human performance with exoskeletons?

October 21, 2021

What is the difference between Iron Man and Wolverine? Iron Man has an exoskeleton made from nitinol and Wolverine has an endoskeleton made from adamantium. Interesting trivia acts as an introduction for today’s topic.

The difference between exoskeleton and endoskeleton is hidden in the names. Both prefixes are derived from Greek, exo meaning outer and endo meaning inner. Hence, the armor of Ironman is an outer supporting shell similar to insects. And the skeleton of Wolverine is like our own but made from a superior material.

Human bio machine has its weaknesses

Without a skeleton, we would be slacker than modern youth. So, we shouldn’t keep our skeletons in the cupboard, but instead make the most of them. Unfortunately, as all machines, even the bio machine of humans wears and tears in the test of time. It is not designed to do 40-hour work weeks for 40 years with repeating movements.

Even though us humans have weaknesses, such as becoming tired, making mistakes and injuring ourselves, we are still better than machines at performing changing tasks. Therefore, humans are still needed in manufacturing, and other tasks as well.

Continuous improvement with different methods 

To prevent the appearance of these weaknesses, we at TT Gaskets are developing our safety at work and processes to ensure the best performance of our employees. But as we are Leaning and continuously improving our workflow, new methods and technologies are always inspiring us.

One of these technologies is the aforementioned exoskeletons. They would allow our workforce to become an army of superhumans that outrun everyone. Probably not in a long while though, as the first exoskeletons developed are quite cumbersome. In the near future though, they could be used in some tasks in our production that require lifting gaskets with large diameter or material sheets and rolls.

Our sales team would also benefit from an Iron Man suit as they are wrestling with the purchasers of our customers. Jokes aside, we are turning every stone whether with or without an exoskeleton to find the best methods to improve our performance. To provide you Smarter Sealing for a Safer Tomorrow.

AI – There is nothing permanent except change

December 2, 2020

In my earlier blogs I have covered how technology could change the world we live in. Some technologies, such as P2X make our economy more sustainable. Some may lead to revolutionary changes in our living in the long run. One of these is Artificial Intelligence, that I talked about a long while ago.

Rapid AI development in short time

You have probably already heard the promises of AI, seen the Terminator movie saga and cringed at stumbling robots. Imitating human thinking and physiology isn’t easy, and we don’t have millions of years to develop our technology. Still the progress in the last 20 years has been rapid and is probably accelerating towards the future.

Machines replacing humans

As AI based applications develop, more human labor can be replaced by machines. Or actually will be, as companies search the best bang for their buck. Machines don’t need rest or salary as we humans do. This then raises the question that if the amount of work available declines over time, should all of us still find something to do as a living?

Work life in the future

The discussion of this topic often gets political, as it in practice requires policy making. But objectively speaking, it is about how we redistribute the work. Distributing the workload evenly and shortening the hours gets some to rise to their hind legs. Dealing with up to 75 % unemployment rate would also get things heated in the society. 

Some proposals include the use of basic income with a separate currency that devalues with every transaction to avoid over inflation. Allowing employees to invest in the machinery that replaces them could also be part of the solution. 

Solutions require open discussion

Finding a solution isn’t going to be easy, as it requires open discussion in all the levels of society. Open discussion seems to be hard to find these days as people are yelling to each other from their own standpoints in social media. And this type of culture has gradually moved to politics as well. 

As the world is changing at an accelerating rate, we need to find ways to negotiate and co-operate on a local and global scale to tackle the challenges we face. Rooting deeper into our positions and (blindly) nostalgizing the past don’t help when we are moving forward.  

As Heraclitus put it a couple millennia ago: “There is nothing permanent except change”, and that’s one of the principles we at TT Gaskets obey. If you want to know more about the change we are planning and implementing, you can meet us at virtual Alihankinta from December 8th to 10th. We are happy to open discussion about your needs.