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Big Data Requires Big Visualization

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Unprecedented access to data means we must literally change the way we view that information – as much as 1TB per day in a large factory. 

That 1TB includes product manuals, code, P&ID diagrams, user manuals, recipes, maintenance manuals and collaborative discussions – all in a multivendor environment. 

It’s unrealistic to assume the displays we have today will serve this need in the future.

Big data requires big visualization.  

Augmented Reality, Endless Possibilities

The possibilities presented by head-mounted devices and augmented reality (AR), enabled for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), offer an enormous opportunity for productivity gains.

AR technology superimposes a computer-generated image on a user's view of the real world. And while many of our discussion around the IIoT focus on connected device data and the decision-making it enables, many companies still see this as a future state.

AR will help move those companies forward, faster, to realize the advantages of The Connected Enterprise. And here’s why: converging the physical and digital worlds will change the way we look at industrial activities, field work, and even training.

When we talk about smart devices enabling smart manufacturing, this is where it comes together – where virtual world and reality meet. The ability to assess the condition of a machine or a line, or perform a task, will literally appear right in front of your eyes, hands-free.

AR and the iPhone

AR will be as influential to manufacturing as the launch of the iPhone was to mobility.

Even the foundation of mobility – tablets and cell phones – is limiting to a technician in front of a machine that needs diagnosis and repair.  When a production line is down – costing that company tens of thousands of dollars every minute – that’s when you need two hands free to work fast and effectively.

AR will allow a service tech to walk up to any connected device, assess the status and show how to fix it, without prior specialized training.

The instructions, checklist or video directions can be provided just when and where they are needed, effectively “just in time training.” And it will help companies realize the value of The Connected Enterprise.

Our conversation will continue to move from generating and analyzing data for better decision-making to making that data more available in a way that user’s expect.

For the workforce of the future, this will change how people are trained, how they operate, what they can do and how quickly and accurately they can do it.

The best news: this is not an industry-specific technology. Every manufacturer can benefit from AR in a smart manufacturing world.

Dave Vasko
Dave Vasko
Director of Advanced Technology, Rockwell Automation

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