User-generated content

Much has been made over the past few years about the value of and potential for user-generated content—content created by visitors to a Web site. Much of the benefit derived so far from this type of content has been in user reviews. Numerous research projects have shown that Internet users place more credence in user reviews than in those from other so...

10/01/2009


Much has been made over the past few years about the value of and potential for user-generated content—content created by visitors to a Web site. Much of the benefit derived so far from this type of content has been in user reviews. Numerous research projects have shown that Internet users place more credence in user reviews than in those from other sources. And Internet visitors are, at least to some degree, relying on these reviews to help make buying decisions. For example, MediaPost reports that nearly 70% of online shoppers read at least four reviews of a product before purchasing it, while almost a quarter of people check eight reviews or more.

Beyond the value of user reviews on a particular product is the value to be derived from shared opinion and discussion. That type of conversation, enabled by the Internet, is what brings the peer-to-peer discussion so sought after at industry events to interested parties on a daily basis, regardless of where they may happen to be.

Control Engineering’s groups on LinkedIn ( budurl.com/celinkedin ) and Facebook ( budurl.com/cefacebook ) are now home to more than 100 such discussions. It’s been the most exciting development of our entire experiment with social media—so much so that we are now committed to developing some of these discussions into feature article content for the print publication and our Web site.

The first of these articles appears in this issue—“Integrated Safety: Has Its Time Arrived?”

Beginning as a discussion point linking to Siemens’ Charlie Fialkowski’s post on Safetybase.com , the conversation quickly grew to more than 20 user-generated comments (seven of which I had to save before being deleted from the news feed on LinkedIn to use as part of the article in this issue). The comments came from engineers, consultants, and industry vendor representatives, with all sides of the issue being well-represented: for it, against it, and possible under given certain circumstances.

Overall, the comments were well-mannered and insightful, though things did get heated in a few instances. Most importantly, everyone on each side of the issue had an opportunity to comment and share in the discussion and mutual learning experience.

Control Engineering will be featuring similar articles based on our social media group discussions every other month beginning in January 2010. So let your voice be heard—participate in the discussions and feel free to start some compelling content of your own.

david.greenfield@reedbusiness.com





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
2015 Top Plant: Phoenix Contact, Middletown, Pa.; 2015 Best Practices: Automation, Electrical Safety, Electrical Systems, Pneumatics, Material Handling, Mechanical Systems
A cool solution: Collaboration, chemistry leads to foundry coat product development; See the 2015 Product of the Year Finalists
Raising the standard: What's new with NFPA 70E; A global view of manufacturing; Maintenance data; Fit bearings properly
Special report: U.S. natural gas; LNG transport technologies evolve to meet market demand; Understanding new methane regulations; Predictive maintenance for gas pipeline compressors
Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again
Migrating industrial networks; Tracking HMI advances; Making the right automation changes
Understanding transfer switch operation; Coordinating protective devices; Analyzing NEC 2014 changes; Cooling data centers
Upgrading secondary control systems; Keeping enclosures conditioned; Diagnostics increase equipment uptime; Mechatronics simplifies machine design

Annual Salary Survey

After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.

The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.

Read more: 2014 Salary Survey: Confidence rises amid the challenges

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.