Now in a regular(ish) Friday spot, this is the Reading Room, a weekly roundup of what we’ve been reading, watching and listening to. You can see these updates even more regularly if you follow me on LinkedIn or Twitter.
- Getting the scoop on the deal of the decade is Circuits Assembly, with news that “USI to Acquire AsteelFlash in Largest EMS Deal in 10+ Years”
- Design News asks, “How Wi-Fi 6 and 5G will transform factory automation?” The combination of 5G and WiFi 6 wireless communications is expected to become a technology enabler for factory automation and IoT applications.
- According to Industry Week and Bild, “Tesla’s German Factory Will Employ 10,000, Produce 500,000 Cars a Year”. Tesla Inc. aims to produce as many as 500,000 of its Model 3 and Model Y electric cars annually at its planned factory close to Berlin, Bild Zeitung reported. The carmaker will employ about 10,000 people at the site, which will occupy an area equivalent to 420 soccer fields, the newspaper said, citing initial plans for the factory, which shows a complete production line as well as testing facilities. Construction is set to start next year.
- Who wouldn’t want to drive a tractor at more than 250kmh? The “World’s Fastest Tractor Tops Out at 153 MPH”, says this feature on Thomas Insights. A young team of engineers has come together to build a tractor that may be the finest in the field but is, without a doubt, the fastest on the track. The recent spectacle found the JCB Fastrac Two at an old World War II airfield in the UK with a mechanic, motorcycle racer, and TV personality Guy Martin behind the wheel. Check out the video!!
- Check out this column from friend and fellow Forbes writer, Marco Annunziata, entitled “How To Succeed In The Fourth Industrial Revolution: 5 Key Insights From Intel’s New Accelerate Industrial”
- And in the very latest update, Fortune tells us that “U.S. and China Agree to a ‘Phase One’ Trade Deal”. President Donald Trump signed off on a so-called phase-one trade deal with China, averting the Dec. 15 introduction of a new wave of U.S. tariffs on about $160 billion of consumer goods from the Asian nation, according to people familiar with the matter.
- And if you love all things AI, check out this story. Apparently “IBM’s A.I. Can Now Mine People’s Collective Thoughts. Will Businesses Use This Data Thoughtfully?”
WEBINARS OF THE WEEK: There are two great webinars coming up back to back next week, both from pioneers in the MaaS (Manufacturing-as-a-Service) space.
- The first is from Fictiv on December 18th at 10am pacific, 1pm eastern, 6pm London and 7pm in Paris. The titles is, “How to Automate Robotics Processes in Record Time” and it is hosted by Scott Menor, Co-founder & CTO at SilSync.
- I’ll be moderating the second, entitled “EMS 2.0, The Digital Transformation of Electronics Manufacturing”, along with executives from MacroFab. This takes place on December 19th at 9am pacific, 12pm eastern, 5pm in London and 6pm in Paris.
Read more, watch more, hear more, know more – that’s the SCOOP!