Today I went to see “Digital in manufacturing and making — what’s coming next?” open forum which kicked off Leeds Digital Festival - a two week long multi-venue city-wide celebration of all things digital.
Despite it being Monday morning, the open forum did not let the attendees to snooze — the topics for the day ranged from the IIoT/4IR industrial automation, bridging the digital skills gap, industry collaboration opportunities to insights from large-scale software delivery — there was something to suit all the attendees despite the wide variety of backgrounds.
We were fortunate to be able to try our hand at coding: Claire Garside of Foundation for Digital Creativity brought over a few Raspberry Pi computers, already assembled and wired up to digital sensors to show the available capabilities and let the attendees have a go.
The open forum was organised by the team from Assembly Conference: an upcoming conference for people in manufacturing, making, and software (the next Assembly Conference event is on Tues 02 October 2018 in Leeds).
The event consisted of three short talks — with speakers from Conflux, Foundation for Digital Creativity, and Thingtrax — followed by discussions during lunch and a Raspberry Pi demo. The opening slides give a bit of context:
Matthew talked about his experience in how software engineering changed in the past 20 years and how it is applicable to manufacturing industry.
Design for change and failure
Iterative delivery works
Design for version control
the system is socio-technical
The Yorkshire Post featured an interview with Matthew about digital in manufacturing, covering the open forum and industry trends.
Slides from Matthew’s talk:
Claire introduced us to a few Raspberry Pi projects she is involved in and how they are trying to solve the skills gap problem in UK.
Offer open access to cutting edge infrastructure
Focus on education
Build on partnerships
Imran shared some case studies from his personal experience and gave a few ideas how to use the new technologies in industry that were not previously available due to large cost.
Industry 4IR are notjust for the “big guys”.
Those who dismiss the 4IR are at risk of competitive advantage.
Start with small and simple projects.
Hands-on experience with devices and sensors
Several people said how impressed they were at how simple they found it to write code with the PiTop computers using the block editors:
The next Assembly Conference — the event for people in manufacturing, making, and software — will be held in October 2018 in Leeds.