Feb 7

Worried about Bandwidth?

Worried about Bandwidth? Some students at our Long Beach PROFINET one-day training class were. It’s definitely something to think about. Here’s a start: There’s never a substitute for doing the engineering. PROFINET messages tend to be small. But design your topology to minimize the chance of using too much bandwidth. You can use line topology,…

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Jan 31

An Engineer on Vacation

You can take an engineer on vacation, but he will find engineering things to do and see. An off-topic post today – at least off the PROFINET and PROFIBUS topic. Still engineering related through. Before going on vacation I used to check for engineering-related places to see. Alas, it no longer works. But, thanks…

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Jan 24

The Importance of Open Standards

What makes a standard open? I’ve blogged that question before: Open Standards, Proprietary Standards, and in Between Open Networks: What’s in it for you? We just completed an update to our free PROFINET one-day training class material. In the course of that exercise we uncovered more detailed definitions. Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE),…

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Jan 17

Square Peg, Round Hole: The hidden cost of simplistic PROFINET application design

Carl is taking a short vacation. He may return with more off-topic news, but in the meantime enjoy this guest post from the PROFI Interface Center’s Kyle McMillan.   The first time my new neighbor got to see me get mad was when I found him lying under his mower, trying to change a blade…

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Jan 10

2017, A New Start

It’s a brand new year. A time to reflect on getting to this point (briefly reflect, I opine). A time to plan for the new year. (Forget resolutions; they never get followed through. Plan instead.) That brief reflection: 2016 was a good year for our technologies. PROFINET, PROFIBUS, and IO-Link all grew their installed bases.…

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Dec 19

How to Spend Your Christmas Vacation

Updated from last year with new and better “technical journals” and with a new addition about Industrie 4.0 and the Industrial Internet of Things. Whenever I think of spending some downtime without the daily pressures of work, I think of Star Trek, especially “The Trouble with Tribbles.” You remember the scene – Chief Engineer Scotty…

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Dec 6

PROFINET – Most Installed, Fastest Growing

According to a new market study by MarketsandMarkets, PROFINET is “the most popular automation network.” And fastest growing. It’s good to have independent confirmation of what I expected all along. Here at PI North America we see increasing numbers of students at our free one-day training classes and the fee-based PROFINET Certified Network Engineer classes.…

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Dec 2

SPS 2016: Around Town

Off-topic warning. To get discounted air fare I arrived in Germany an extra day before the show. After catching up on my email, I walked around Nuremberg. The Friday after the show marks the beginning of the Christmas markets in cities and towns throughout this part of Germany. The market was being setup, but was…

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Dec 1

SPS 2016: Members’ Booths

I tried, but did not quite succeed, in getting to the booths of all the PI North America members at the show. The Siemens booth engulfed one hall all by themselves. Here’s an overview:   HMS was showing the Anybus Wireless Bolt which uses WiFi and Bluetooth to wirelessly connect devices in cabinets to Wireless…

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Nov 30

SPS 2016: Press Conference

PI also conducted a press conference on Wednesday morning of the show. Look for the details in PROFINEWS. Here are some additional details not covered in PROFINEWS: Process Automation PI has been working closely with NAMUR, the process users’ organization. They are limiting their Ethernet choices to PROFINET and one other. The focus is on…

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