Six Features

John Flaig's picture
John Flaig
Story update 9/26/2017: The words "distribution of" were inadvertently left out of the last sentence of the second paragraph. Some practitioners think that if data from a process have a “bell-shaped...
Mike Richman's picture
Mike Richman
QDL from Fri., Sept. 15, 2017, demonstrated that everywhere you look, you’ll find the positive effect of better quality. Here’s what we chatted about: ““U.S. Business Sectors Gain or Hold Steady in...
Eston Martz's picture
Eston Martz
The Six Sigma quality improvement methodology has lasted for decades because it gets results. Companies in every country around the world, and in every industry, have used this logical, step-by-...
Eston Martz's picture
Eston Martz
Six Sigma is a quality improvement method that businesses have used for decades—because it gets results. A Six Sigma project follows a clearly defined series of steps, and companies in every...
Anthony D. Burns's picture
Anthony D. Burns
I had humble, that is, poor, beginnings. I didn’t even know the taste of real ice cream until later in life. One of the first impacts I felt of the luxury that technology brings was the diode my...
Dirk Dusharme @ Quality Digest's picture
Dirk Dusharme @ Quality Digest
Our August 11, 2017, episode of QDL looked at the role of technology in after-market service, stairs that help you up, Fidget Cubes, and more. “Climbing Stairs Just Got Easier With Energy-Recycling...
Ken Levine's picture
Ken Levine
Completing the define phase of a lean Six Sigma (LSS) project is a critical part of any project, although it’s often underestimated in practice. The define phase of the define, measure, analyze,...
Mike Richman's picture
Mike Richman
The June 30, 2017, episode of QDL offered a wrinkle in time, of sorts: not only orbiting debris and medieval medicine, but moments in the here and now such as our interview with Keith Bevan of the...
Douglas C. Fair's picture
Douglas C. Fair
Plant-floor quality issues tend to focus on a company’s technical resources. When products fall out of spec, alarms sound and all hands are immediately on deck to fix things. Despite large...
Matthew Barsalou's picture
Matthew Barsalou
As you drive east on I-70 coming from the Rockies, there is a point where you seem to have stopped descending, but a sign says, “Trucks: Don’t be fooled. Four more miles of steep grades and sharp...
Steve Daum's picture
Steve Daum
I have daily conversations with manufacturer plant managers, quality managers, engineers, supervisors, and plant production workers about challenges when using statistical process control (SPC). Of...
Matthew Barsalou's picture
Matthew Barsalou
I n part one of this two-part series, I described the need for empiricism in root cause analysis (RCA). Now, I’ll explain how to achieve empiricism when performing a RCA by combining the scientific...
Matthew Barsalou's picture
Matthew Barsalou
There are many reasons for performing a root cause analysis (RCA). These reasons include determining the cause of a failure in a product or a process as well for determining the root cause of the...
Stefan H. Steiner's picture
Stefan H. Steiner
In his February 2017 Quality Digest column, “Don’t We Need Good Measurements?” Donald J. Wheeler recommends that a measurement system contributing up to 80 percent of the overall variation (on the...
Harish Jose's picture
Harish Jose
I have been reading a lot these days about Western philosophy. The most recent book, All Life is Problem Solving (Routledge, 2001), is by Karl Popper, one of the great philosophers of the 20th...
Jason Furness's picture
Jason Furness
In a previous column based on our recent book, Manufacturing Money (Amazon Digital, 2015), we explained how to maximize ROI. Here we describe some changes that business owners and managers can make...
Michael Causey's picture
Michael Causey
Former FDA Chairman Robert Califf, M.D., stepped down on Jan. 20, 2017, and it’s not always easy to predict what the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), or any FDA agency, will...
Harish Jose's picture
Harish Jose
As our new year unfolds, I wanted to write an article to remind myself of three pieces of advice. They are from Epictetus (55–135 AD), Marcus Aurelius (121–180 AD), and George Pólya (1887–1985)....
Donald J. Wheeler's picture
Donald J. Wheeler
What can be done when a test is destructive? How do we characterize measurement error? How can we determine if a test method is adequate for a given product or application? How can we check for...
Kyle Pheland's picture
Kyle Pheland
Change is inevitable in every organization. Planned or not, forces inside and outside the enterprise can sometimes encumber a workforce and lead to nonvalue-added processes. Growing spurts, major...