Shiny, shiny, well, actually sort of satin black
When I cook, I start by chopping vegetables. And what with being a materials sci geek, there’s only one kind of knife for me, the Kyocera ceramic ones. The white ones that look like plastic, until people cut themselves. And I have one, bought it in Japan, so 7 years old, never sharpened it, still frighteningly sharp. So I was most upset when a flatmate, who is lovely, but just a little clumsy with her hands, managed to break the tip off it.
So what did tieke bring back from her stilting trip to Hong Kong? I mean, aside from the Hello Kitty instant noodles? Yes:
Yes. And the more observant amongst you will notice that its black, not white. This is one of the hot isostatic pressed ones, which are even better.
Reasons to upgrade, also 10,000 people lose their jobs
Airbus is cutting 10,000 jobs. They only employ 50,000. Why the cuts? Coz of delays in making their A380 superjumbo. Why is it delayed? Apparently, coz the wiring has problems. What are these problems? Apparently, parts designed and built in one country don’t fit with parts designed and built in another country. But surely, in this information age, where information technology breaks down barriers and helps us all speak, work and think in harmony, surely a trivial problem like this should be solved in a flash?
Well, it seems there’s a problem with their software. The engineers amongst us will have heard of AutoCAD, which is the standard CAD software that engineers use to draw in 3D and design everything they make. Airbus doesn’t use that. They use Catia, from Dassault. Imagine if AutoCAD (which costs something like $7000) was MS Paint. Catia is Photoshop. It costs silly money. Catia isn’t just a design package, it’ll tell you if you’ve made it too weak, where you’ve made it too strong, hell, probably even what colours would look best depending on whether you’re designing something to go outdoors or in.
And yes, engineers in one country where using Catia version 4. Engineers in another, version 5. Airbus decided that upgrading, and retraining, was too expensive. The cost of delays to production are estimated at nearly ten billion dollars.