Once Works Well was pure technology. Now it seeks merely to divert.
Pansy subjects - Verse! Opera! Domestic trivia! - are now commonplace.
The 300-word limit for posts is retained. The ego is enlarged

Monday, 21 December 2009

Are we all born to lead?

Industrial efficiency reaches its zenith on a car production line. Robots move heavy objects, spot-weld body parts and spray-paint the body, pneumatic wrenches are set to to tighten nuts and bolts exactly, components come in small batches (“just-in-time”) to eliminate inventory problems, the car body is raised and lowered automatically to prevent line workers suffering back strain. But there’s a price: mind-numbing repetitive work for the humans. Can the price be reduced?

Volvo has a small plant where teams of four assemble wheels and tyres in the correct sequence of sizes and colours for four daily deliveries to the main production line. The tasks involved in this work are rotated to create interest and the position of Team Leader is also rotated after a set period. Trust the Swedes. Except that some people don’t want to be Team Leader. What’s the solution? Better education, or may some people be hard-wired to reject that form of responsibility?

Prezzies from Prague. Because of restrictions about fluids at the airport check-in the beer had to be bought in the duty-free. It’s a dark and I’m hoping the super-beer-knowledgeable RW (zS) will be able to tell me whether I’m in for an enjoyable experience or not. The Salami Minis (now a distant memory) were real hotsy-totsies and thereby delicious. And label on the peanuts – Clever – made them irresistible.

Novel progress 22-23/12/09. Ch. 8: 4094 words (finished but not edited). Chs. 1 - 7: 33,000 words. Comments: Over past three days suffered a small attack of writer's block, the most boring malady known to man. Discovered a cure, wrote through afternoon then returned to the keyboard at 1 am and worked until 2.45.