Japanese start-up introduces the first humanless warehouse

Jobs performed by warehouse workers and forklift operators are now completed by robots in the first humanless warehouse in Tokyo. Mujin, a start-up company, has equipped its customer’s, JD.com, e-commerce warehouse with robots.

In an effort to augment existing industrial robot arms, Mujin is building robot controllers and camera systems. The controller’s technology based on motion planning and computer vision, strengthens robotic autonomous and intelligent action. The enhanced controllers lead to the elimination of manual robot training and overall higher productivity.

The 40,000-sq-m JD.com e-commerce facility is equipped with 20 industrial robots that complete tasks such as picking, transferring packages, and loading docks and trucks. Crates on conveyor belts, camera systems and Mujin robot controllers are all part of the humanless warehouse. The robots come with five workers who are needed to service the machines, compared to an estimated 400 to 500 workers that would be needed in the absence of the robots.

Mujin is targeting the predictability in the controller’s moves, and the development of automation technologies such as robot hardware, sensing hardware, AI algorithms, conveyor systems and sorting systems. That’s to say that the company aims to standardize a complete automation package that can automate warehouses without tailored components for customers.

Improvements will continue to be made in the field of warehouse automation as Japanese companies, following JD.com, will be testing out the new technology.

What level of engagement do workers have in a fully automated warehouse?

How are robots enhancing productivity in a warehouse?

What technologies can aid the integration of robots in a warehouse?

Source:

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/10/30/the-worlds-first-humanless-warehouse-is-run-only-by-robots.html

Introducing Advanced Connectivity with Wi-Fi on the go

Imagine a fully functioning and connected office on the go. Access to multiple entertainment and business applications from within your vehicle is now available as the British car manufacturer, Bentley, announced the offering of the first in-car Wi-Fi system.

All Bentley models in 2019 will be presenting drivers and passengers the ability to connect to the Bentley Advanced Connectivity system using a dedicated app on their smart phone. User friendly applications include the ability to access and edit files, hold video conferences, connect to virtual meetings, and benefit from Bentley Skype for Business.

Behind Bentley Advanced Connectivity

An exclusive contract has given Bentley a head-start in Wi-Fi on the go for at least 12 months. Partnering with internationally recognized communication company, Viasat, the manufacturer produced a multi-channel virtual private network (VPN) capable of supporting up to three mobile network operators. Style and comfort are not compromised with the connectivity system placed inside the vehicle’s boot lid, and the router connected to the on-board DC power supply.

Bentley IoT Security

Multiple layers of security and in place as data transferred with Bentley Advanced Connected is reconsolidated for the end user after being divided and transmitted over three mobile networks. One compromised SIM card would therefore not alarm a security breach as it represents only part of the data package. Furthermore, Active Cyber Defense, a system developed to protect users from data theft and ransomware attacks offers additional layers of support and security. On-the go secure connectivity is being made possible through technology and comfort.

What does the future of driving with Wi-Fi look like?

How does IoT enhance one’s driving experience?

Is data security compromised with on-the-go Wi-Fi?

Sources:

https://www.bentleymotors.com/en/world-of-bentley/the-bentley-story/news/2018-news/bentley-introduces-worlds-first-super-fast-in-car-wifi.html

https://www.iottechnews.com/news/2018/nov/05/bentley-launches-car-wi-fi-system-advanced-connectivity-uninterrupted-mobile-network/

 

 

Peru and the Old TPP

In the article “Peru’s New Leader Champions Trade in the Trump Era” (https://www.ft.com/content/2e2af8ee-b293-11e6-a37c-f4a01f1b0fa1) , an overview is given of Peru’s trade strategy now that the TPP will most likely be stopped. Per the article, Peru’s president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski believes that it is “fundamental that world trade grows again and that protectionism be defeated”. Currently Peru’s top trading partners are China and the US. Although Kuczuynski confirms that Peru’s relationship with the US remains strong, he is “seeking to deepened ties with Beijing”. Additionally, the day after Trump vowed to scrap the TPP, Peru hosted the Chinese president Xi Jinping. Although Kuczynski hasn’t totally given up on the TPP, he stated that Peru is “considering the merits of a rival Chinese initiative, the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership”, which is essentially a new TPP reformed to exclude the US. How many countries would wish to participate in such an agreement? Would the US discourage such an agreement? Only time will tell.

PRESIDENT-ELECT TRUMP: IS THE TPP DEAD?

In the wake of Donald Trump winning the election to be the next President of the United States, there are discussions currently ongoing about how that will affect the TPP agreement. Will he scrap the deal as he promised to do during his campaign? How would he do that? Would it be a popular decision?

http://abcnews.go.com/Business/trump-trade-president-elect-tear-tpp-nix-nafta/story?id=43467294

TPP Ratification Unlikely Under Trump, Singapore Unhappy

In the article Singapore disappointed TPP is unlikely to be passed under Donald Trump: PM Lee, the author seeks to examine Singapore’s stance on the TPP given that Donald Trump is now the president elect in the United States.  As I’ve written before, the US is the pivotal player in the TPP deal.  If the US does not ratify the TPP, it is highly unlikely the deal will be ratified in other countries, including Singapore.  Singapore has been a stark supporter of the TPP, and it’s not surprising that with the prospect of the TPP fading, Singapore has voiced public disappointment.

As another indication that the world was watching the US election, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee indicated he was well aware of Donald Trump’s stance on the TPP.  Lee’s exact word were that Trump “had no sympathy for the TPP at all.”  Singapore’s main reason for its pro-TPP stance is that it would to enjoy lower tariff and non-tariff barriers for both goods and services, but Singapore is also a very small player in the grand TPP scheme.  The TPP accounts for 40% of global trade amongst its participating countries.  PM Lee has also noted previously that not ratifying the TPP would make the US lose credibility with countries around the world.

Moving forward, it looks like Singapore’s stance on the TPP is all or nothing.  When PM Lee was asked if the deal could be amended to add new countries like Russia or China, he responded that the deal would be a completely new animal.  He called such a deal a “new exercise,” a strong indication that the deal as it is right now is the only way Singapore would like to see the deal ratified.  As President elect Trump begins to enact his policy, the world will be watching with interest to see how deals such as the TPP created under the Obama administration will be handled.  If Trump does keep any of his campaign promises, it will not be surprising if the TPP is completely scrapped.

 

What countries will be involved if a new TPP style deal is crafted?

Will there be significant global fallout if the TPP is not ratified in the US?

How much consideration should Trump give to smaller countries like Singapore as compared to the larger countries not in the agreement such as Russia and China?

http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/singapore-disappointed-tpp-is-unlikely-to-be-passed-under-donald-trump-pm-lee

 

Schoolyard Brawl

In a recent article on the website, yahoo.com, they discuss the hostile environment in the Japanese Diet over the ratification of the TPP. Japanese lawmakers recently voted to ratify the TPP, but the sensitive top quickly dissolved into and Jerry Springer episode as fights broke out on the committee floor. Many lawmakers disagreed with many of the provisions. While the deal will lower many of the tariffs for Japanese exports, the open markets will create more competition for Japanese farmers and businesses. Will more fights break out as they try to reconcile their differences? Will the deal get ratified? Will other countries show the same hostility toward each other as they attempt to ratify the deal?

 

Tuft’s Study Predicts Negative Effects of TPP For Canada

 

In the article TPP’s Economic Impact Will Be Fewer Jobs, More Inequality, New Study Says, the author seeks to examine a study released at the beginning of this year regarding the TPP.  Interestingly, the study actually predicts a shrinking of the US and Japanese economies ten years after the TPP would come into being and a very modest growth in the Canadian economy.  Overall, the study claims that job losses will occur due to the TPP due to shifting production to goods for exportation as well increased competition.

The TTP would encompass 40% of the world’s economy so it’s not surprising that competition could get very fierce given new areas of trade for many of the countries involved.  The study conducted by Tufts’ Global Development and Environment Institute predicts that Canada’s economy would grow 0.28% as opposed to not being part of the TPP.  This 0.28% equivocates to only $5 billion dollars.  Interestingly, the Tuft’s research contradicts some early research that states there would be bigger benefits to employment and economic growth.  One contradictory study from the Fraser institute has the net benefits being at $9.9 billion for Canada, basically double what the Tuft’s research shows.

One finding the Tufts research that many have argued as a downside to the TPP is the loss of jobs and income inequality created by the TPP.  The amount of income flowing to business owners and shareholders would increase, relatively, while the amount of income flowing to wage earners would shrink, the Tufts study predicts.  A negative impact to income distribution scares many in Canada.  The exact numbers used are a reduction of the labor’s share of the GDP of 0.86%.  It’s important to note that Canada already more unequal than the US when it comes to the labor’s share of the GDP.  It will be interesting to see how Canada interprets conflicting studies about how the TPP will affect it’s economy in the future.

 

The Tuft’s study appears to confirm the fears of everyday citizens in countries that are included in the TPP, do you believe this study is valid?

If Canada does not ratify the TPP, could the results be worse than ratifying it?

If the TPP is scrapped, do you believe a new trade agreement will have to be crafted in its place?

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2016/01/20/tpp-economic-impact-canada-us_n_9029892.html