Automation Chat
How Industrial Analytics Work & What’s Coming Next

How Industrial Analytics Work & What’s Coming Next

May 11, 2022

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In this episode of “Automation Chat,” Executive Editor Theresa Houck discusses advanced analytics in industrial automation and their role in improving business results for any size company. She is joined by Chirayu Shah, Rockwell Automation Product Head of Edge to Cloud & Analytics. 

Learn about descriptive, diagnostic, predictive and cognitive analytics and why they're important to your organization as well as your specific job role.

Find out how to understand the context of your data; how edge and cloud technologies are processing data at much higher rates, supporting AI and machine learning to improve efficiency and business results. Get real-world examples of how manufacturers are using analytics.

And find out key trends and why they matter to you.

And of course, get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

Access more resources from today’s episode:

Video of this special podcast conversation is available on our YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/s9KcmUlXqR4.

12 Industrial Automation Trends in 2022

12 Industrial Automation Trends in 2022

April 12, 2022

In this episode from The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, Executive Editor Theresa Houck discusses 2022 industrial automation trends affecting manufacturers and producers on their digital transformation journey.

Learn about the strategies and smart technologies companies are using to improve agility, productivity and performance — especially to help deal with the challenges of COVID-19, supply chain disruptions and skilled labor shortages that have arisen in recent years. 

And of course, get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

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Successful Strategies for Mitigating Manufacturing Supply Chain Disruptions

Successful Strategies for Mitigating Manufacturing Supply Chain Disruptions

March 22, 2022

In this episode from The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, Executive Editor Theresa Houck details the steps some manufacturers are taking to successfully build resilience and agility into their supply chain so they can recover from a shortage of people, products or capacity. Our hope is that some of these can help you. You’ll learn the common thread in all of them is the use of digital solutions, data analytics and IT/OT convergence.

Agility allows you to make faster changes, and will help verify the right cost, service and quality given external market factors. Resilience will mitigate the impact of disruption where there are potential points of failure.

It’s useful to understand how and why the supply chain disruptions happen so you can evaluate your processes and technologies to minimize the impact. Theresa reviews the domino effect that started when COVID-19 hit in 2020, then examines ongoing factors that continue to resonate — including the China lockdown due to a COVID resurgence, labor shortages, a recent earthquake in Japan, the truck driver shortage, and particularly, the Russia/Ukraine war.

She examines catastrophic effects on the food and beverage industry, including the price and availability of bread, meat and eggs, and how food security is threatened in many parts of the world. Also learn about the semiconductor chip & other electronics and automobile industries, with reduced production in China, Europe and the United States that delay production and increase supplier and OEM costs.

Learn the real reasons behind The Great Resignation cited by MIT data and other research. And see how some manufacturers are successfully using cross-training, upskilling, labor-supporting technology like robotics or AGVs, and other strategies to streamline work and improve productivity and worker satisfaction.

And of course, get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

To learn more about how to build resiliency into your supply chain, download our newly released 2022 Supply Chain Reliability eBook.

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The Gray Market: True Risks of Buying Products Through an Unsecured Supply Chain

The Gray Market: True Risks of Buying Products Through an Unsecured Supply Chain

February 28, 2022

In this episode of “Automation Chat” from The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, Executive Editor Theresa Houck discusses the gray market — products sold legally, but outside of the brand's permission. This isn’t an issue limited to just Rockwell Automation; it applies to all industrial automation suppliers.

What’s the difference between an Authorized Distributor and the gray market? Are counterfeit products really a big problem? And how can you tell if a product is counterfeit — or can you? What’s the harm in buying refurbished or used parts and equipment from an “unauthorized” source?

Theresa chats with Ryan Smaglik, Head of Revenue and Brand Protection at Rockwell Automation. He’s well-versed on what’s happening in the gray market, the risks of acquiring products through an unsecured supply chain, the ramifications those products can have for users, and examples of bad experiences customers have had. You’ll find his insights to be eye-opening.

And of course, get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

If you like “Automation Chat,” please leave us a 5-star rating, and subscribe so you don’t miss a single episode.

Access more resources from today’s episode:

Video of this special podcast conversation is available on our YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/zoCjff3LbCo.

EXCLUSIVE: Gina Ayala Claxton, President, Americas Region, Rockwell Automation

EXCLUSIVE: Gina Ayala Claxton, President, Americas Region, Rockwell Automation

February 9, 2022

We’re thrilled to bring you this EXCLUSIVE interview with Gina Ayala Claxton, the new President for the Americas Region at Rockwell Automation, who just started in January. She chats with Theresa Houck, Executive Editor of The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine.

Part of Gina’s new role is to help make the customer experience easier. Find out what this means for current and future customers. She also explains why building high-performance teams requires diversity not only in race, gender and other traditional ways, but in thought. And learn what it means to her to be the first Latina President for the Americas, and how she plans to continue her advocacy for equality and inclusion.  

They also chat about the unique relationship of Rockwell Automation, its Authorized Allen-Bradley® Distributors, and companies in the Rockwell Automation PartnerNetwork™ program for delivering products to customers.

And of course, get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

Get more resources here:

If you like “Automation Chat,” please leave us a 5-star rating, and subscribe so you don’t miss a single episode.

Video of this special podcast conversation is available on our YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/VAtgdxGIkLw.

Highlights from the 2021 Automation Fair Event in Houston

Highlights from the 2021 Automation Fair Event in Houston

January 24, 2022

In this episode of “Automation Chat” from The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, Executive Editor Theresa Houck reviews highlights from the 2021 Automation Fair® event, hosted by Rockwell Automation Nov. 10-11 in Houston. Learn about the 100+ exhibits from Rockwell Automation and companies in its PartnerNetwork, the event’s hands-on labs, training sessions, industry-focused forums, and keynote presentations. Also learn about 3 trends evident from the technology on display on the show floor.

And of course, get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

If you like “Automation Chat,” please leave us a 5-star rating, and subscribe so you don’t miss a single episode.

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And the #1 Episode of 2021 is… Lessons from the Colonial Pipeline Cyberattack & Steps to Take

And the #1 Episode of 2021 is… Lessons from the Colonial Pipeline Cyberattack & Steps to Take

December 14, 2021

We’re excited to re-share our top episode of 2021! This is my chat with Grant Geyer at Claroty about he Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack that happened in May.

Please follow us, and rate us and give us a review. And enjoy this #1 episode of the year!

The ransomware attack that shut down the Colonial Pipeline on May 7, 2021, is considered the most impactful cyberattack against U.S. critical infrastructure to date, but it’s not the only one. Many infrastructure and manufacturing facility cyberattacks occur that we don’t hear about.

So in this episode, host Theresa Houck, Executive Editor of The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, chats with Grant Geyer, Chief Product Officer at Claroty, a leading industrial cybersecurity firm. They examine how the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack happened, as well as how the February 2021 Oldsmar, Florida water treatment cyberattack occurred, and the far-reaching effects. Also learn about the importance of the asset operator as the first line of defense.

Also learn about the asset operator’s role as the first line of defense; how converged IT/OT networks are vital for ICS efficiency, but also increase the attack surface available — and what to do about it; the technical and organizational features of a well-thought-out cyber defense; lessons learned that are useful for every industrial firm and critical infrastructure facility. And more.

And of course, you get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

Additional resources:

• Blog: Ongoing Colonial Pipeline Attack Unprecedented Against U.S. Critical Infrastructure
ICS Risk & Vulnerability Report, with data points pertaining to the energy sector
• Claroty website 

Best of 2021!  #2: How the Oil & Gas Industry is Using Digital Technologies

Best of 2021! #2: How the Oil & Gas Industry is Using Digital Technologies

December 13, 2021

As 2021 winds down, we’re re-sharing our top episodes of the year. This is my chat with Allan Rentcome at Sensia about how oil and gas companies are investing in digital automation.

Please follow us, and rate us and give us a review. Enjoy this #2 episode of 2021!

Host Theresa Houck, Executive Editor of The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, chats with Allan Rentcome, CEO of Sensia, the first fully integrated oilfield automation solutions provider.

They talk about how the economic downturn has affected the oil and gas industry, especially with COVID-19; how oil and gas companies are investing in digital automation; the role digital technologies will play in the next few years; how to get meaningful views into real-time production data; and more.

Video of this podcast is available on our YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/jDWVTd3xF8M.

Best of 2021!  #3: How Wearable Computers are Changing the Workforce

Best of 2021! #3: How Wearable Computers are Changing the Workforce

December 8, 2021

As we near the end of 2021, we’re re-sharing our top episodes of the year. This is my chat with Andrew Chrostowski at Realwear about wearable computers.

And be sure to follow us, and rate us and give us a review — it really helps, and we sincerely appreciate it. Now enjoy our #3 episode of 2021!

Host Theresa Houck, Executive Editor of The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, chats with Andrew Chrostowski, Chairman of the Board and CEO of RealWear. They talk about how head-mounted, hands-free wearable tablet computers are helping with workforce challenges, including the retiring workforce and increased remote workers because of pandemic, as well as efficiency and safety.  

They also talk about the role of the “connected worker,” typical applications such as maintenance and operations, and what kind of problems wearable computers are designed to help with. Also see how your work will change as wearable communications become more common, how the role of wearable computers will expand in the next few years, and more.

And of course, you get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

Additional resources:

Video of this podcast is available on our YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/FsrfGrcXR2E.

Best of 2021!  #4: Proper Termination and Grounding of VFD Cables

Best of 2021! #4: Proper Termination and Grounding of VFD Cables

December 6, 2021

As 2021 winds down, we’re re-sharing our top episodes of the year. This is my chat with my buddy Steve at Southwire about termination and grounding of VFD cables.

And be sure to follow us, and rate us and give us a review — it really helps, and we appreciate it. Now enjoy this #4 episode of 2021!

Host Theresa Houck, Executive Editor of The Journal From Rockwell Automation and Our PartnerNetwork magazine, talks with Steve Wetzel, Senior Product Engineer with Southwire Co., about terminating and grounding variable-frequency drive (VFD) cables. Learn why cable termination is so important, why cables often are terminated incorrectly, and how to achieve proper termination. Discover the best way to terminate a VFD cable’s shield and ground wires, and how to terminate VFD cable coming into and going out of intermediate termination boxes such as quick disconnects.

And find out one concept Steve wishes all users understood about VFD cables.

And of course, you get your family-friendly, silly Joke of the Day.

Additional resources:

Video of this podcast chat is available on our YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/0kkInWUQczg.

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