Freelance Writer

New Year's Resolution: Learning New Skills

Resolutions are a tradition of good intentions that rarely make it through the first month of the year. The dreams of exercise and weight loss are usually soon clouded by a schedule that doesn’t allow for the results that...

Regaining Control Of Your Control Systems: Begin With Housekeeping

Have you ever ventured into a server room or opened a control panel which contained mission critical equipment, and just looked right past legacy equipment that hasn’t been used in years? Like old parts propped up in a corner, and...

Leaving Your Legacy Control Equipment

Some will argue that there's no reason to remove part of a control system that today is running as good as it has for the last twenty years (or longer.) Especially when that legacy hardware has been as durable as...

ControlLogix Redundancy System Alarm

How many times do you walk around your facility and visually look upon every control system that is currently in operation? If you are anything like me, it may be months in between the times I see some control panels. Along...

The Realities of Project Management: Know When to Hold ‘Em, Know When to Fold...

In 1975, computer architect Fred Brooks published a series of essays on software engineering and project management called “The Mythical Man-Month”.  These cautionary tales and inevitable realities not only stand the test of time, but also can crossover to...

Converting Equipment from PC-Based to PLC-Based Control

My company was provided an OEM label printer and applicator machine that was being controlled by five Arduino PC boards. They were asked to provide a PLC control system, however, they insisted that they needed to use this controls architecture...

PLC Backups: A Look at AssetCentre

If many moons have passed since you began working with programmable logic controllers, then you will undoubtedly have memories of sitting in front of a laptop, hoping that it will boot, because it contains the most up to date...

How to Implement Lean Manufacturing Processes

Lean manufacturing is the go-to model in a variety of industries for managing teams and ensuring a high-quality end-product. Construction, software development, traditional manufacturing and other processes are complex, time-consuming, and have multiple parties and steps involved. Incorporating lean principles...

Getting A-B PLC Data Into A Raspberry Pi

In my last article I discussed why you might want connect your PLC to a IoT device like a Raspberry Pi, as well as the software we use to accomplish this connection with A-B PLCs (Node-Red with the free...

Mitsubishi GX Works Communications Setup

In today's article I'll explain how you setup communications in the Mitsubishi Programming Software, GX Works. For those coming to GX Works 3 from GX Works 2 (or earlier,) finding the right area to modify the parameters is the first...

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