06 Nov How do these technologies create business value fo
How do these technologies create business value for the implementing organizations.Please read the case and answer3 questions at the end.Goodyear, JEA, OSUMC, and Monsanto: Cool Technologies Driving Competitive Advantage.If necessity is the mother of invention, then capitalism issurely the mother of innovation. Companies are beingdriven to develop unique applications of undeniably cooltechnologies by the drive to create a sustainable competitiveadvantage. At the end of the day, as cool as this thing we’vedeveloped is, it’s a tool, says Stephanie Wernet, Goodyear’sCIO. It is meant to serve a business end. In our case, thistool lets us put out new, more innovative products fasterthan the competition.Working with Sandia National Labs, Goodyear’s ITdepartment developed software to design and test tires virtually.In the past, the company built physical prototypes andtested them by driving thousands of miles on tracks. Using amathematical model, the software simulates tire behavior indifferent driving conditions so that the designer can see howthe tire gets pushed, pulled, and stretched as it rolls down aroad, hits bumps, turns corners, screeches to a halt, and gripsthe road in wet, dry, and icy conditions. Goodyear wanted toshorten that time to get its products to market more quickly.Three research and development employees advancedthe idea of testing prototypes using computer simulations,which could do the job faster.The company had never done simulations but figuredinitial investments and subsequent maintenance costs wereworth the payoff. Goodyear’s cost of goods sold, as well as itssales, decreased by 2.6 percent from 2003 to 2004, the yearits first fully simulated tires hit the market. Meanwhile, theresearch and development (R&D) budget for tire testing anddesign decreased by 25 percent.Custom-built software runs on hundreds of processors onhundreds of Linux computers in a massively parallel computingenvironment. Goodyear invested more than $6 million tobuild this high-powered computing environment. It plans toexpand and upgrade its Linux clusters to meet business demandsfor new tires and to improve the fidelity of its virtualtests. The company believes it is the first tire maker to usecomputers to design and test its wheels. Although the autoindustry has done computer-assisted design work since the1980s, the technology had not been applied to tires becausetheir malleable materials made simulation difficult.Designers can perform 10 times more tests, reducing anew tire’s time to market from two years to as little as ninemonths. Goodyear attributes its sales growth from $15 billionin 2003 to $20 billion in 2005 to new products introduced asa result of this change.Public utility JEA uses neural network technology tocreate an artificial intelligence system it has recently implemented.The system automatically determines the optimalcombinations of oil and natural gas the utility’s boilers needto produce electricity cost-effectively, given fuel prices andthe amount of electricity required. It also ensures that theamount of nitrous oxide (N2O) emitted during the generationprocess does not exceed government regulations.
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