What has a leading software company insider learned about the way manufacturers look at the cloud for product innovation, engineering, and industrial software? What’s the mood in the market, and what cloud misconceptions linger? And what new did we learn about Siemens’ Paul Brown when we threw some “not typical” questions his way?
Watch this episode of (Not Your Typical) Tech Interview, the show where we dig into industry issues and then dig a bit further to learn about our guests.
For more information on cloud migration, please see the (Not Your Typical) Cloud Migration Interview with Schnitger Corp’s Monica Schnitger.
For more information on the market shift to the cloud, please see the (Not Your Typical) Cloud Market Shift Interview with Allan Behrens.
For more information on industry readiness for the cloud, please see the (Not Your Typical) Cloud Interview with Siemens’ Paul Brown.
To get insights into your own company’s cloud readiness, please check out our Cloud PLM Advisor.
Welcome to not your typical industry interview, where we ask industry experts some questions that are really important. And then add in a few that maybe are just there for fun.
Today, I’m joined by Paul Brown. He’s a longtime industry friend and industry expert, and also the senior marketing director at Siemens digital industry software. Paul, welcome.
Hi Jim, good to talk to you.
So Paul, I think people are still learning a lot about the cloud for product innovation, product development and engineering, what are some of the misconceptions that you still find companies have about the cloud?
Well, I think the biggest misconception is that it’s an either or discussion. They will either say, “I think, it’s cloud, or it’s desktop?” And the answer really is using the right tools at the right time, in my processes, and being able to mix them, being able to share data between the two. It’s not a one or other discussion. That’s the important thing. And I think that’s the big misconception people have.
How did you first know that you were either blessed or cursed with the engineering gene, depending on how you look at it?
Well, that was… When I was a kid, one of the things that I absolutely was addicted to was a thing that we called it… over here, it’s called Meccano. I think, in the US it’s Erector. It’s the sets, strips of steel, nuts and bolts, and you… And I would spend hours building stuff. I just loved it.
Yeah, I think the people today, as they’re growing up, they’ll probably have the Lego set with a Raspberry Pi, that’s probably cloud connected to their smartphone. And that’s their Meccano or Erector set.
Do you think the overall mood or view of cloud for product innovation, product development, and engineering software has changed? We definitely have seen an increased interest in adoption. But do you think that just the feeling has changed about it?
Oh, absolutely. I think, as the current situation, the world situation has evolved, companies have been faced with this challenge about how do I work with my people at home? Here in the UK, we’re still in lockdown. They’re still all the rules that say, don’t go into the office unless you absolutely have to. So companies have to carry on, on how they can run their business with their workforce working from home distribute… I want secure access to data, I want people to be able to carry on doing their jobs, but without risking my information going around. Sending memory sticks home is not an answer to collaborative design. So, leveraging the cloud for those sorts of things. And I think people are recognizing that cloud based technologies, using the cloud in that way, is allowing businesses to carry on and thrive in this environment.
Yeah, we’ve actually got some research that shows that the impact of the pandemic has actually been an acceleration and increased focus on digital transformation, and in the cloud. So, certainly things are changing more quickly than they had been.
Paul, when did you realize how different today’s smart cloud connected products are than traditional products?
It was about three and a half years ago. Now, I had actually had some say, what for me was major surgery. For the doctors, they actually… Doc told me, “Don’t worry, it’s minor surgery. You don’t have to worry about it. It’s absolutely fine that… Yeah, a heart bypass. Yeah, we do these every day.”
But what happened obviously, after that I was in my recuperation, and I like cycling, I’m very keen on cycling. And one of my goals was getting back on my bike, and I started back on the bike indoors. Now I have a friend who’s also a coach who sets me kind of programs to do, and he was helping me plan out my recovery. I’d got on the bike one evening, I did an hour, and I’d stopped; literally, within a minute of me stopping, he sent me a text message that said, “I never told you… I thought I told you to keep your heart rate below 140.”
Because not only on the app, he had gone up to the cloud, he had come back to his device, he had seen I’d done a workout. He had seen what cadence I’d done, what my heart rate had been… How my heart rate had varied throughout that hour, through the whole thing, and how much power I’d been putting out. He saw all those measurements on his phone, and so then he sent me a message to tell me that I was pushing too hard and I should be, I should be more patient. So that was it, he was like, “Wow, you cannot avoid that.” And that was when I started saying, “Okay, that’s the power of all this internet, interconnected technologies and cloud based apps.”
Great. Paul, thank you so much for sharing your views, always a pleasure and I always learn something.
My pleasure. Thanks for talking Jim, speak to you again soon.
Thanks for joining us today on the web show where we ask industry experts mostly the wrong questions. It’s been a lot of fun. I’d like to thank our sponsor, Siemens. You can learn more about cloud software for product innovation, product development, engineering, and other industrial needs by visiting Siemens Digital Industry Software. Thanks for coming.