- Decide on what network software you wanted to purchase:
- Plan to spend $100 to $300 per PC
- Plan to spend $200 to $500 per PC
- Plan to spend at least $1,000
So what happened to change this mess? Sun Microsystems created NFS which was an open and royalty free standard for file sharing. Anyone could implement NFS! NFS was (and is) a HUGE SUCCESS by any standard. Did some companies sell NFS? Yes. Was it at the same ridiculous price that the proprietary vendors were selling their proprietary network software for in the market? Absolutely not. Did many companies simply roll networking into their software so they could sell higher value applications? Absolutely! The smart and innovative companies realized that the by providing a standard interface and open protocol they could move up (as well as down) the value chain by offering new choices for customers.
Here is another way to think about the economics of this situation today in the machine tool market. The rising tide of MTConnect will lift all manufacturing companies except those that continue to hold onto the old and proprietary standards. MTConnect is not evolutionary, it is revolutionary. I have always said that the first step to make a revolution in manufacturing and to truly realize the "Holy Grail" of manufacturing, which is "Art To Part, First Time Correct", is a common open and royalty free standard for machine tools to speak to the manufacturing floor, the enterprise and to the Internet. It will be at this point that true innovation will start and machine tool productivity really takes off. You can not manage what you can not measure as Lord Kelvin once so eloquently stated.