Note: Insider News articles & videos cover behind the scenes topics at The Automation Blog, Podcast & Show. Starting in 2021 they’re now posted at

Let me start by wishing you all a very Happy December, and thank you all for your continued support and patronage!

December’s Content Schedule:

This time of year always seems to be a challenge to schedule new blogs and videos since so many other things are going on during the holiday season.

That said, thanks to our awesome freelance writers this week we were able to bring you a couple of great articles about Project Management and Control System Health. And on next week’s schedule is an article on Asset Centre and another on Migration from SoftLogix to ControlLogix.

I also had a chance to sit down again with Jeff Brown at Mitsubishi and go over their line of HMIs, after which he was kind enough to give me a tutorial on how to program Mitsubishi PLCs.

So the next edition of The Automation Podcast will feature Jeff’s presentation, after which I hope to follow-up with a new episode of The Automation Show going over how to write, download, and test a program for a Mitsubishi PLC for the first time!

Also scheduled for The Automation Show this month is a followup to my last DH-485 episode where I will show how to read data out of several different devices over DH-485 and into a ControlLogix.

Note: I plan to continue to release episodes of The Automation Show here for Patrons to view days earlier than the public.

PC Upgrade

In addition to all that, this Black Friday I finally pulled the plug and ordered all the parts I’d need to replace my studio PC.

For Insights In Automation, I mostly use two PCs. In the Studio (in my garage) I use a Windows 10 Home i7-6700K Desktop PC for all my industrial automation software which runs inside of VMWare Workstation Pro 15.5.

Then in my office (the small bedroom in our house,) I use a Windows 7 Home Premium Asus G75 Laptop which has an i7-3720QM.

The problem is the Laptop is vintage 2012, and while I’ve definitely got my money’s worth, it’s so old that it’s starting to give me a lot of issues (and for some reason it doesn’t like Windows 10.)

I’ve also spent a lot of time this year waiting for my 2016 i7-6700k to finish rendering episodes of The Automation Show as well as lessons for my courses at The Automation School.

So after much thought and internal debate, I decided to break out the company credit card and order all the parts needed to build a new Windows 10 Pro i9-9900 based Desktop PC for use in creating my videos as well as rendering those videos.

That will fee up my 2016 desktop which I can use in my office to replace my old 2012 Asus laptop.

If time allows, I hope to film the process of building of my new PC to share with you as a “Patron only” insider video next month 😉

Store (and free downloads) Update

As a follow-up to adding of “all” of the past episodes of The Automation Minute to the store here on, I’m now working on adding all of the past episodes of The Automation Show as well.

To that end, I’ve already processed up to episode 26 and uploaded them to the Insight’s S3 account, so now I just need to schedule some time to create all the “store products” here on the site.

Once they are all added, Platinum Patrons will have access to download all of them totally free of charge!

New “Swag” Planned

And the final item I wanted to share this month is my plans to add The Automation Blog and Show swag to the store.

Specifically I’m thinking T Shirts, Mouse Pads, and Coffee Cups sporting our site’s logos.

While I was hoping to have that done this month, the hectic holiday schedule my wife has planned for us will probably push it out to January.

And that’s this month’s Insider News update!

If we don’t get to talk before the holidays, let me wish you all a very Happy Holiday Season, and a safe and prosperous New Year!

Until next time, Peace ✌️ 

Shawn M Tierney
Technology Enthusiast & Content Creator

Have a question? Join my community of automation professionals and take part in the discussion! You'll also find my PLC, HMI, and SCADA courses at

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Shawn Tierney



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