We all know that technology is used in our everyday lives, right? I definitely know this first hand, because usually I’m helping someone fix a problem on their computer. When their computer is down, they lose all sense of being productive. If they can’t use the computer, they basically can’t do anything. It really is getting to that point. I know how vital it is to have working technology. I was so impressed with how Ford uses technology through every process in it’s creation of automobiles.
While at Ford we were able to get a first hand look at some of their virtualization and virtual reality that helps them with placement of features and tools inside of a car or truck. In the video below you will see a Ford employee explain how there are a few different VR models they use as they are creating concepts for cars. Utilizing this technology has sped up their production time by 6 months! You can virtually turn on the AC and see exactly where it will hit a persons body, no matter the size of the person. Even though I’m quite short, they can program the virtual reality to have me be sitting in a car as a 6 ft tall person! This also cuts WAY down on the need to have test subjects in their virtual environments, since a test subject can be any height, weight or build programmed into the system. Utilizing this virtual world they do not have to manufacture a car, simply to test out it’s features. They can get the features right before the car is even built!
Then we mozied on over to the Rouge Factory, where they build Ford F-150’s. This was seriously one of my most favorite parts of the entire trip. The factory is typically open to the public for tours, and if you are ever in Detroit I HIGHLY recommend going through the tour. First there was a fun video about the history of Ford, and some great showroom mustangs on display. We were able to learn about Ford’s commitment to running an Eco-Friendly company (which I will elaborate more on tomorrow). Then we were able to see them produce the trucks. This was so much fun! One thing that I was really surprised about was that there were still a lot of actual people on the assembly line putting parts in the trucks. I thought, for some reason, that the entire process was robotic now. In the video you can see that even the little “4×4” sticker near the rear of the truck was actually placed on the car by someone!
Hands on assembly aside it was also incredible to see the technology of how the cars are assembled. The front cab is assembled separately from the back of the truck, the amazing part (to me anyway) was that there would be a black truck, then a white truck, then maybe 2 red trucks, but when they bring the front half together with the second half, it always matches! It was really so much fun to watch.
So, my question to you today is… What could you accomplish if you had a virtual world to test things out on first, or at least what would you want to try out without actually having to do it?
I was invited to participate in this program by Clever Girls Collective, Inc. in partnership with Ford and Ogilvy PR. Ford Motor Company paid for my travel and accommodations at the 2-day Driving Green Technology event, I was not compensated in any other manner for my time. My opinions posted here are my own.
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