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Nice Day!

So today was a great afternoon to get out. The wife’s at work tonight so I’ve got the place all to myself. Right after I got home from a great day at work I hopped on my bike and went for a ride. I don’t really know how far I went, the battery in my speedometer/odometer on the bike appears to be very low. Guess I’ll have to pick up a new one. A quick look at a map gives me at least a 4 mile trek, most likely more. Anyhow – I’m out of shape. 🙂 That 4 mile trek was worse than the 12’s I used to do nightly 2 years ago… Before I starting dating anyhow!

Anyhow, back the work topic.
I work where every Monday I get to run a few reports. Then come Thursday I have to explain some mundane detail about an entry that was made the previous week on the manufacturing floor. Mind you a few hundred entries are made weekly. We have all sorts of ‘weekly’ reports. These reports show us “how we did” last week.

I want to know how we are doing now.

Simply put – we have lots of reports for last week – but absolutely nothing for ‘right now’. This in turn means that it’s impossible for the production floor to know if they are doing ‘good’ or ‘bad’ right now. I can tell them next week though…  but by then – nobody knows what happened last week [or cares].

Today, I started to ‘fix’ that. Over the last few months I’ve been toying with a new tool to pull real time data on the fly. It came back semi-real time and required a ton of work to display it in a logical order – but it was a start. Last week I received the ‘key’ piece to make it work – on accident.
I found an error in the management level report for the previous week (I’d reversed engineered the site metric a few months back so I could actually figure out how it worked – and properly explain it when asked…). Somehow it was adding in a few ‘extra’ hours. Anyhow, long story short the programmer gave me a section of the code he was using to generate the report (It turned out to be a database error – my report was correct, management was wrong. Nice job to me)

But the code… Bingo. It solved my issue will pulling the data. I changed it up a little bit and hit run – and I got exactly the data I was looking for back. In real time.
Over the last week I’ve created a new report that runs in real time (ok, every 3 minutes it updates itself…) and shows how we are doing right now on our most expensive production equipment/line (easily $5 million per line – and we have over a half dozen in the building).
So I setup a simple old PC to display the data at the production line and sent out an email to the factory leaders about it at about 3:30pm.
The response from the factory people wasn’t spectacular, but Site Management found out quickly enough… I have to give a demonstration at 8am tomorrow to two of the site management guys and the emails I received back from them were very praising. 🙂

Now I need them to let me buy a new PC with dual screens to display the data and it’ll not only display how we are doing now, but it’ll look great and let me add in a few more features I’d like too….

Going to be a good week I think!

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