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At all levels of automation system planning, development, and application we struggle with the issues of technology migration and the seemingly endless cycles of new technologies. It is vital that we keep the technology in perspective and focus on the business drivers because, in the long term, the technology will change but basic business issues remain relatively constant. A successful systems implementation allows for the business rules to be changed without having to scrap all the systems and start over. Concepts such as open systems, flexible automation, and application portability support this objective. Implementations of technology such as client/server, object orientation, fieldbus, NT & UNIX, etc. do not in themselves support this objective. These technologies are simply tools which can be applied to create systems which solve problems. In practice, engineers and managers often need to determine when is the right time to adopt a new technology into their organization. In addition to an understanding of your organization goals and directions, having the right tools to objectively evaluate the role technology will play in accomplishing your vision will help you take the right course. This presentation will examine technology adoption and discuss how you can better prepare your organization to realize the benefits of new technologies without becoming trapped in the ever-changing world of new technologies.
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