Automate LIVE

Automate LIVE provided a virtual experience of the Automate 2023 Show and Conference that took place in Detroit, May 22–25. In partnership with—and hosted by—content creators Jake Hall of The Manufacturing Millennial and Chris Luecke of the Manufacturing Happy Hour podcast, along with other leading voices in automation, Automate LIVE streamed topics, people and companies pertinent to manufacturers looking for the latest in automation to help alleviate ongoing labor shortages, increase productivity and succeed in today’s competitive environments. 

Enhancing Asset Locating & Tracking Using RTLS

Enhancing Asset Locating & Tracking Using RTLS

Ulli Thornton, Product Marketing Manager for Siemens Industry, joins Nikki Gonzales and Alicia Gilpin to talk about identification and locating and how Siemens as a technology supplier is bringing Real-Time Locating System (RTLS) to the space, improving on traditional technologies such as OID and RFID by enabling the creation of geo-fences to disable tools and assets if removed from their location. Thornton goes on to discuss Siemens’ investments in software and cloud technology and the

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CPG Powerhouse to Robotic Automation Expert

CPG Powerhouse to Robotic Automation Expert

Carl Doeksen of 3M joins Chris Luecke to discuss 3M’s experience and continued activity in industrial applications. Long known for its consumer brands and products, Doeksen highlights the automation that 3M is bringing to grinding, sanding, and polishing activities as well as to other tasks that continue to be primarily performed by humans today. The conversation also introduces the upcoming Robotic Grinding and Finishing Conference—making its first return since 2018—and rai

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Mobile Robots Address Labor Issues

Mobile Robots Address Labor Issues

MiR Vice President of Sales Jane Heffner joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to talk about the future of mobile robotics, which is expected to have a significant impact on industries such as manufacturing and logistics; addressing labor issues; and improving efficiency. The group also reviews the importance of apprenticeships and diversity in the industry, and Heffner’s role in developing the sales team and predicting future growth.

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Celebrating What Automate Has Become

Celebrating What Automate Has Become

A3 President Jeff Burnstein shares his experience accepting the Engelberger Award with Jake Hall and Chris Luecke. They also discuss the current state of robotics and opportunities that lie ahead, the success of Automate 2023 and the event’s history, and the growth of A3 itself.

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How 5G Is Transforming the Automation Industry

How 5G Is Transforming the Automation Industry

Jan Diekmann, Automate keynote speaker and Technical Account Manager for Advanced Industries at Ericsson, visits with Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to expand upon his keynote session and further explain how the automation industry can and is benefitting from 5G technology. He highlighted the growing number of companies that have developed tangible applications that are easily implemented on the shop floor and the increasing number of successful 5G implementations in a variety of applications.

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Polishing Technical Excellence with Partnerships

Polishing Technical Excellence with Partnerships

FANUC America’s Jerry Perez and GrayMatter Robotics’ Ariyan Kabir join Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to talk about their collaboration and technology partnership and how together they have been able to solve longstanding challenges for customers seeking automation solutions with robotics. They outline the importance of identifying mutual benefit as a key pillar to making partnerships work and how their complementary core competencies have enabled them to couple software with robotics

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Open Architecture & Flexibility Flatten the Curve

Open Architecture & Flexibility Flatten the Curve

Ted Thayer of Phoenix Contact meets with Nikki Gonzales and Alicia Gilpin to talk about the benefit of open platforms. He also presents Phoenix Contact’s PLCnext platform as an interoperable and flexible solution that supports Python and Tensorflow to broaden application uptake and expansion of PLC usage by lowering the barriers to programming, adoption, and deployment. They discuss how the open, easy-to-use architecture of platforms like PLCnext make it ideal for early engagement with

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Wrapping Up the Largest Automate Show Yet

Wrapping Up the Largest Automate Show Yet

Alex Shikany, VP of Membership and Business Development for A3, wraps up Automate LIVE 2023 with Jake Hall and Chris Luecke. They discuss some of the highlights of this year’s event, including Shikany’s time with Tom Izzo, the Engelberger Awards ceremony, student attendance at Automate, and the Phoenix Contact Startup Challenge. They also highlight the benefits of A3 membership, Automate’s move to an annual event that will take place in Chicago in 2024, and upcoming A3 event

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Pay-for-Productivity Automation

Pay-for-Productivity Automation

Formic Technologies’ Jack Kaumo joins Nikki Gonzales and Alicia Gilpin to discuss the benefits of robot-as-a-service (RAAS) automation solutions, which include full design engineering, service, maintenance, and spare parts. By working with an established integrator network, Formic provides a low-risk contract for fully built systems at a low price to help companies with comprehensive support and monitoring that eliminates the need for clients to have dedicated automation system support

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Robotic Automation for Hazardous Work in Oil & Gas

Robotic Automation for Hazardous Work in Oil & Gas

Jacob Belleau, Application Engineer at ARC Specialties, joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss how FANUC Innovative System of the Year winner ARC Specialties’ recent innovations in robotic automation enhance safety for workers on offshore oil rigs, as well as bring technology and automation to other traditionally manual, high-hazard industrial applications.

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Growth in Flexible Manufacturing

Growth in Flexible Manufacturing

Russell Tyler, Director of Product Management for Zimmer Group, shares updates with Chris Luecke and Jake Hall about the company’s advanced grippers for large material handling and for use in harsh and high-hazard environments. Tyler talks about the evolution of gripper technology and how Industry 4.0 and IIoT has led to the advancement of gripper intelligence through the creation of self-monitoring systems and the role that custom gripper development will continue to play in the future

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"Machine Vision" from Detector to Decision-Maker

James Finch, VP of Customer Solutions at Eigen Innovations, sits down with Chris Luecke and Jake Hall to discuss how Eigen Innovations is helping manufacturers take machine vision beyond inspection by adding AI and process intelligence to their quality inspection and manufacturing systems. The discussion touches on lowering barriers to adoption, the importance of being able to scale, and the value of getting the most from investments in vision systems.

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Innovations in Motion Plastics for Sustainability

Innovations in Motion Plastics for Sustainability

Felix Brockmeyer, CEO of Igus Inc., talks with Chris Luecke and Jake Hall about motion plastics — self-lubricating plastics that outperform and outlast metal counterparts while eliminating the need for oil and grease. The conversation expands into igus’s commitment to sustainability, to developing products that improve the environmental impact of manufacturing without compromising quality, and how their solutions solve problems for robotics and factory automation.

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IT/OT Convergence & How to Navigate the Transition

IT/OT Convergence & How to Navigate the Transition

Zachary Stank of Phoenix Contact USA Inc. joins Jake Hall to discuss Open Control and the PLCnext Technology that Phoenix Contact has brought to market and its ability to bridge the information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) worlds. The conversation explores the convergence of IT and OT; challenges that must be overcome; and how manufacturers can start the process of preparing for and transitioning toward a connected IT/OT environment safely, sustainably, and securely.

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Tailored Creativity to Develop Custom Integration

Tailored Creativity to Develop Custom Integration

Shawn Smith, Director of Sales for JR Automation, joins Chris Luecke and Jake Hall to discuss industry adoption of automation and how activities stemming from reshoring, electrification, and industry expansion are creating new challenges and opportunities for integration. The conversation looks at JR Automation’s approach to customer success and how the company solves problems through the design and delivery of customized end-to-end robotic and automation integrations that maximize valu

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Partnerships Expand Robotic Adoption

Partnerships Expand Robotic Adoption

Zachary Thoma of Kawasaki Robotics and Victor Darolfi of RoboTire join Chris Luecke and Jake Hall to share their views on the benefits of partnering with complementary businesses to accelerate product development, reduce deployment time, and scale production. The discussion provides insight into how technology partnership helps to lower barriers to entry into robotics, opening doors for small businesses to integrate robotics into their products and solutions with reduced risk and increased od

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Modern Conveyor Solutions

Modern Conveyor Solutions

Scott Blais Jr., Sales & Business Development Manager for mk North America, talks with Chris Luecke and Jake Hall about the evolution of conveyor technology and the continuous drive for innovation that manufacturing and automation exerts on the industry segment. They discuss considerations that must go into conveyor selection and how advancement in system design and the introduction of robotics and flexible manufacturing have resulted in more efficient products for a wider variety of appl

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Transitioning from Components to Solutions

Transitioning from Components to Solutions

John Ross, VP Sales with PHD, Inc., recounts the process of PHD repositioning its actuators from a component to a solution and the value that traditional component manufacturers can bring to their clients by embracing customer intimacy, understanding the problem, and leveraging customization into the next generation of products. Additional topics include the evolution toward turnkey solutions, market expansion for actuators into medical devices and robotics, transition from pneumatic to elect

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IT Solutions Enable Smart Manufacturing

IT Solutions Enable Smart Manufacturing

Advantech Corporation’s Key Account Manager Eric Guyer joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss the importance of technology, hardware advancements, and strategic partnerships in driving smart manufacturing and digital transformation. The group also discusses Industry 4.0 challenges, such as managing and analyzing large amounts of data, handling complex algorithms for artificial intelligence (AI) at the edge, and bridging operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT) sy

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Metrology Hardware Integration and Industry 4.0

Metrology Hardware Integration and Industry 4.0

API’s Eric Nemitz, Matt Ledger, and Arturo Quinto join Nikki Gonzales to discuss the integration of metrology with automation, the importance of real-time data in quality control, and a revolutionary new non-contact optical scanning technology capable of measuring complex surfaces at 8-, 15-, and 25-meter ranges. The group also emphasizes the importance of using the right instruments and sensors to ensure quality in automated manufacturing and precision defect detection.

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Get Your System Backed Up Before It’s Too Late

Get Your System Backed Up Before It’s Too Late

AUVESY-MDT’s Shannon Friedman and John Boyd join Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss the importance of having a back-up plan that includes automated backup and a repository for PLC, robot, IT managed switch, controller, and other automation system backups. When it comes to cyber security, proactive beats reactive every time. The group also takes up cyber security, asset inventory analysis, and common vulnerability and exposure (CVE) databases that help with risk assessment to identify

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Speeding Time to Market with Automation

Speeding Time to Market with Automation

Dassault Systémes’ Tony Karew sits down with Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to talk about the benefits of robot simulation, offline programming, and digital manufacturing models in manufacturing processes. Emphasizing the importance of speed to market and ownership of automation and other IP, the conversation turns toward virtual validation, concurrent design and execution, and connecting production with product design engineering to bring products to market faster, allowing for easi

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Produce More with the Welders You Already Have

Produce More with the Welders You Already Have

Daniel Adams of Hirebotics, LLC, joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss robots that can be programmed using smartphones, tablets, or any device with Internet access, making it accessible even to those without robotic programming experience. Hirebotics technology helps welders become robot programmers, enabling manufacturers and job shops to fill gaps in industries facing a welding labor shortage. The technology can be easily applied to other activities such as cutting and grinding.

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Ultra-High-Pressure Technologies for Aerospace

Ultra-High-Pressure Technologies for Aerospace

Shape Process Automation Senior Vice President Simon Kenworthy joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss three main application areas for ultra-high-pressure water jet technologies: coating and seal removal in MRO (maintenance, repair, and overhaul); removing gross shell material in exotic alloy casting operations; and ultra-high-pressure abrasive water-jet cutting of hard materials across a wide range of thicknesses. Such cold material processing technology increases versatility and elimin

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7-Axis Robotic Collaboration

7-Axis Robotic Collaboration

Kassow Robots’ Global Sales Manager Dieter Pletscher and Regional Channel Partner Manager Jim Adamski join Winn Hardin and Jimmy Carroll to share their company’s advancements in collaborative robot technology and the benefits of its 7-axis design in machine-tending applications. The duo share their insights into the advantages in safety, efficiency, and overall productivity that the extra axis brings when collaborating with humans, as well as in applications such as welding, which

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Easily Automate High-Mix, Low-Volume Production Ta

Easily Automate High-Mix, Low-Volume Production Ta

Rapid Robotics Co-founder and CEO Jordan Kretchmer joins Nikki Gonzales and Alicia Gilpin to discuss the benefits and unique aspects of Rapid Robotics' approach to automation and robotics in manufacturing, focusing on cost-effectiveness, flexibility, and customer collaboration. The conversation focuses on robotics-as-a-service (RAAS), which includes construction, design, and assembly of work cells to reduce the risk and costs associated with purchasing and integrating robots.

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Kistler Group: Measure, Analyze, Innovate

Kistler Group: Measure, Analyze, Innovate

Kistler Group’s Marc Leidner and Rolf Sonderegger join Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss the importance of measurement technology, the impact of AI, the role of culture in fostering innovation, and the growth potential of the automation industry. The conversation emphasizes the role of measurement technology in providing valuable insights for optimizing processes and improving productivity and product quality.

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Horner Automation: Retrofitting Made Easy

Horner Automation: Retrofitting Made Easy

Horner Automation’s Chuck Ridgeway and Jake Hall discuss the incredible investments in automation technology that have shifted the way manufacturers work and deploy technology and how empowering operators with tools and better communication capabilities is crucial for improving productivity and efficiency. From stadium projects and automation system retrofits to applications in the agricultural industry, the discussion emphasizes the increased need for easy-to-use solutions such as a pa

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Sensor Integration for Advanced Automation

Sensor Integration for Advanced Automation

Jake Hall interviews Rob Kline of Balluff to get his perspective on the continued evolution of robotics and automation and the introduction of advanced technologies like AI to create smart solutions for industrial applications. Kline talks about how Balluff is harnessing its investments and expertise in IO-Link to expand sensor data collection and analysis capabilities of modern systems in a standardized, interconnected fashion that simplifies cabling complexity. The session wraps up with ins

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Adaptable and Autonomous Production Environments

Adaptable and Autonomous Production Environments

Siemens’ John Krasnokutsky and Bernd Raithel join Jake Hall to discuss the importance of technology and digitization in transforming the manufacturing industry. The conversation includes topics such as the role of AI, specifically ChatGPT, in manufacturing and its potential benefits for engineers in terms of efficiency and documentation; the integration of technologies like AI, computer science, and deep learning; the importance of maintaining standards and safety measures in manufactur

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The Future of Simulation & Interactive VR and AR

The Future of Simulation & Interactive VR and AR

Visual Components’ Graham Wloch joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss advanced simulation and its impact on productivity, efficiency, and cost savings in manufacturing. The conversation focuses on the need for companies to invest in simulation to validate and improve their processes, as well as the benefits and applications of simulation in the manufacturing industry. The group emphasizes the role of simulation in improving processes, driving efficiency, and enabling collaboration

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Specialized Recruiting Maximizes Hiring Success

Specialized Recruiting Maximizes Hiring Success

Derrick Harrison of Seekers Technical and Cy Sprouse of Bespoke Manufacturing Company talk with Chris Luecke about the challenge that many businesses face in recruiting and retaining the right mix of talent with the right depth of skills and capabilities to meet their needs. The discussion highlights their approach, which uses the SPEAR methodology (Sourcing, Prospecting, Engaging, Analyzing, and Review) to validate candidate skills and abilities against the unique requirements of a hiring co

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Robotic Precision for Mission Critical Inspection

Robotic Precision for Mission Critical Inspection

Michael Muldoon of AV&R talks with Jim Beretta about the benefits of narrowing your focus and the success that AV&R has had in the robotic finishing and visual surface inspection market, as well as more recently in the orthopedic implant segment. Muldoon discusses the adoption of robotic solutions in the aerospace industry and the importance of tightly coupled hardware and software solutions to provide customers with end-to-end polishing and visual inspection performance in mission cr

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ESTAT: Reduces Clutch Size, Improves Efficiency

ESTAT: Reduces Clutch Size, Improves Efficiency

Stuart Diller and Kirby Witte of ESTAT Actuation join Chris Luecke and Jake Hall to talk about how they use electro-adhesion to produce clutches for robots that are 10x lighter and 1000x more efficient than conventional alternatives. The Phoenix Contact Startup Challenge winners explain their “electric glue” technology and its potential for use in walking robots, AMRs, aircraft, and other applications and the excitement that comes with inventing and productizing new technology.

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Introducing Today’s Youth to Robotics

Introducing Today’s Youth to Robotics

Paul Aiello, Director of Education at FANUC America connects with Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to talk about the role that training and education play in robotics. The conversation touches on the growing labor shortage in manufacturing, the resulting need to automate with robotics, and how FANUC is engaging youth in high schools and colleges with grant programs and other supports to encourage them to build on their interest in the industry and technology and to pursue related careers. Aiello wr

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Vertical Integration Creates Diversification

Vertical Integration Creates Diversification

Tim Stellmacher and Beau Wileman of PBC Linear join Winn Hardin to discuss linear motion technologies and how automation has led the 40-year-old company to improve precision and dependability in their core products while at the same time opening new market opportunities beyond manufacturing, including medical, laboratory automation, and robotics. The discussion also introduces Cobot Feeder, developed by PBC Linear in response to their own adoption of robotics and their expansion into robotic

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Collaborating with Customers to De-Risk Investment

Collaborating with Customers to De-Risk Investment

Thomas Reek of SCHUNK joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to talk about how flexible manufacturing and the adoption of automation by new and smaller companies has evolved the product design and development process for system providers. The discussion navigates through the importance of reducing changeover times for grippers and end of arm tooling in robotics and underscores the value of collaborating with customers to ensure that end products meet the full requirements of the application.

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Fueling Expansion with External Investment

Fueling Expansion with External Investment

Peter Finn and Joe Giordano of TD Cowen sit with Nikki Gonzales and Alicia Gilpin to share their experience with investment banking and their specific interest in working with industrial robotic companies to provide financing for technology development, organizational growth, and funding for M&A activity. The conversation provides insight into factors that affect investment activity, the value in establishing relationships early, and also provides a view to the investment landscape from t

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Constant, Accelerated Change Drives Innovation

Constant, Accelerated Change Drives Innovation

Joe Gemma, CRO of Wauseon Machine, meets with Jim Beretta to share his passion for the robotics and automation industry and to discuss the impact that labor shortages are having on adoption and integration of automated systems. He also explains how technology development is lowering barriers to industry, making automation available to small manufacturers. Additional topics include the growth in collaborative robots, mobile platforms and vision, and the convergence of these technologies across

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Automation Helps Manufacturers Do More with More

Automation Helps Manufacturers Do More with More

Rob Armstrong, Chief Marketing Officer at Zebra Technologies, joins Winn Hardin and Jimmy Carroll to discuss how Zebra Technologies’ recent acquisitions in the automation market give the company a unique perspective on technologies to boost productivity and on the part adaptive automation is playing in the manufacturing industry. From developing deep learning tools for its software to deploying autonomous mobile robots that increase agility, efficiency, productivity, and quality on the

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Adopt Robots in Dull, Dirty & Dangerous Industries

Adopt Robots in Dull, Dirty & Dangerous Industries

Evan Haley of ATI Industrial Automation and Milton Guerry of SCHUNK join Chris Luecke and Jake Hall to discuss the growth of automation in grinding, finishing, and polishing applications as well as in other dull, dirty, and dangerous tasks that continue to be done manually. They characterize the use of robotics in heavy industrial settings as a necessity, compounded by labor shortages, and present their ideas for success in what seems to be a natural fit for robotic adoption and deployment, s

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Automation Solves Challenges for Many Industries

Automation Solves Challenges for Many Industries

Sebastien Schmitt, North American Robotics Division Manager at Stäubli, sits down with Jim Beretta to discuss some of the latest trends impacting the world of robotics, including the increasing electrification of the automotive industry, enhanced sanitation requirements in the medical device industry, and workforce issues in the food and beverage industry. They also talk about Stäubli’s two newest products that launched at Automate 2023: SCOPE, a solution for continuous edge d

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New Scale Robotics: Measurement on the Move

New Scale Robotics: Measurement on the Move

Scott Wisotzke, Director of Sales for New Scale Robotics, joins Jim Beretta to share the story of the company and how it is helping manufacturers produce high-quality parts. The systems integrator works with manufacturers to implement collaborative robot solutions that use unique end-of-arm tooling to measure and move parts in metrology applications that require high precision for industries like aerospace, medical device manufacturing, and machine tooling.

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Identifying Opportunities for Automation Industry

Identifying Opportunities for Automation Industry

Robert McElmurry, Director of Business Intelligence for A3, joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke for a discussion focused on the potential of the automation industry. McElmurry outlines some of the trends he’s seeing in automation applications, adoption, and innovation; shares the importance of innovation and collaboration; and explains the role of the A3 Business Intelligence unit for identifying the industry’s next opportunities.

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Automation Systems Training Is Critical

Automation Systems Training Is Critical

BizLink’s VP of Factory Automation Peter Gerstenberger and Training Manager Dennis Sutton join Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to explain why automation systems training is important today as the industry rapidly grows and evolves. They also discuss some of the latest robot trends and cable management solutions.

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Mission: Make It Easy to Automate Inspection

Mission: Make It Easy to Automate Inspection

Overview Co-Founder Austin Appel meets with Chris Luecke and Jake Hall to discuss Overview’s mission to make it easy to automate inspection. They discuss the challenges and risks manufacturers face with interconnecting and adopting legacy and new technology, and the value that exists in being able to simplify the process with plug-and-play, no-code solutions. The discussion wraps up with insights into the future of automation and the belief that user experience expectations will continu

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AutoStore: Storage and Retrieval Automation Reduce

AutoStore: Storage and Retrieval Automation Reduce

AutoStore’s Jon Schechter joins Jake Hall and Chris Luecke to discuss how automation and digitization have become increasingly important in manufacturing verticals and retail, as companies seek to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and meet customer expectations. The group also emphasizes how digitizing inventory, especially for spare parts distribution, enables companies to have readily available stock and fulfill orders quickly, improving customer satisfaction.

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