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Welcome to my blog for all things related to business quality (processes, systems and ways of working), products and product quality, manufacturing and operations management.

This blog is a mixture of real-world experience, ideas, comments and observations that I hope you'll find interesting.

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Leave my equipment alone!

I could get very fed up with big corporations messing up my equipment. It happens with my computers, and it happens with my Sky box. Every few weeks things start happening that shouldn’t, or things stop happening that should. Here’s a Sky example; a couple of over-the-air software updates ago my Sky box’s on/off switch […]

Consumer rights

Here’s a terrific little piece from the BBC about consumer rights and how to get redress for poor quality goods and services: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8253915.stm

Free start-up resources in Cambridge

With thanks to the always interesting Martin Kleppmann on Twitter http://twitter.com/martinkl, I have come across an interesting alturistic start-up incubator for software companies in Cambridge (UK) run by the software company Red Gate: http://springboard.red-gate.com/ For 10 weeks Red Gate provide mentoring, office space, some money, and lunch, all free and with no strings attached. They don’t […]

There’s a new OS in town

So Google are launching a new computer Operating System – http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/8139711.stm Great news! Competition in this area has got to be a good thing. Not only does it give us more choice but it keeps the current incumbents, Windows and Linux, on their toes. (Apple is a special case, of course, and has many lessons […]

Customer service?

I’ve just seen a classic case of bad customer service at a company that I’ve been working with; it could have come from a text-book on how not to do it.  My client had ordered some equipment from a well known IT product manufacturer with a very short name. It was due for delivery today […]

A quick lesson in web page design

It surprises me how easy-to-use some web designs can be, yet how unusable comparable sites can be even when their designers are supposedly world class. Here’s a quick example from the world of weather forecasting. First the good: http://www.xcweather.co.uk/ – just hover your mouse over points on the map; double click on a point and see […]

Mouse tricks

I find that the mouse, not the keyboard, is my main interface with computers these days. I seem to type less and click more! I’m a big fan of Logitech mice – the ones with extra buttons that you can program to perform different functions – and for several years I have always used the […]

Be sceptical about product lifetime claims

My house is 35 years old, and the water main and supply to the building was plumbed in a new plastic wonder-material. ‘It will last as long as the house is standing’ they said. I do hope they are wrong! I have now had six holes in the garden in the last 15 years, where […]

National Electronics Day?

So National Electronics Week (Earl’s Court, London) has come and gone. I had planned to go for all three days but in the end I was only there for three hours as I couldn’t justify staying longer. The show consisted of an island of stands in the middle of Earls Court Hall 2. There was a […]

Technological progress in reverse

I guess we are all familiar with the demise of Concorde and the apparent reversal of the normal forward progress of technology – we used to be able to fly to New York supersonically, but no longer. Air travel has become slower, albeit a lot cheaper. But less esoteric technologies also exhibit the same frustrating […]