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Six Sigma Cost Savings and the Work Function

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  • #35974

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear All: How much work does a Six Sigma team do to produce the cost savings it does for a corporation? This, if you think about it, is no different from the question, “How much work does a horse do?”. James Watt had to answer this question before he could market his steam engines and profit from them.Today engineers use the equation Work done = (Heat in – Heat out) to determine the thermal efficiency of a heat engine, such as the engines that power modern automobiles, aircrafts, and the SpaceShip1 that recently placed a man in orbit and got him home safely.  Likewise, Einstein had to answer the question, “How much work is done to eject an electron from within a metal?”He thus conceived the photoelectric law. This law, rewritten as y = hx + c, can be extended to study many problems well beyond physics, if we appreciate the idea of a work function that Einstein proposes to solve a very complex problem that baffled physicists of that era. In the attached, I have used this idea of “work” to be done by a Six Sigma, or the broader meaning of the work function to analyze the data on cost savings produced by Six Sigma Implementation programs.The data were obtained from a very nice article written by Charles Waxer which I found on this website.Waxer also alludes to a follow up study, but I have not been locate it.If anyone is aware of this and provide a reference, I would greatly appreciate it.  As I hope you come to appreciate, this idea of a work function is a very useful one.I have also used this idea recently to analyze actual data for more than 11.5 million parts produced in a production process.The process is now operating with a yield of 99.73%.Great cost savings can be achieved with even higher yieldsl.Again, I find that the idea of a work function is very useful to understand the number of defects produced in this process.My current involvement in this study also prompted me to study Waxer data – to convince management of the potential benefits of Six Sigma Implementation and the $ investment needed to realize the projected savings.  I would love to share these findings, at a later date, as this process improves its capability – from about 4S today to 6S – in the not too distant future. Of course, a great deal of “work” still remains to be done to achieve the 6S goal.  Again, thanks for allowing me to share this forum with you.  There are two attachments here.One is a Microsoft Word document with the text and the other is a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation (both in pdf format).  Have a great weekend.Attachments: SSCostsav1.pdf SSCostsavfigs.pdf

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    #102376

    Anonymous
    Guest

    Dear V,
    You might find the following article of interest:
    http://isic.ucsd.edu/papers/noiselearning.shtml
    I should also point out that Dr. Gen-ichi Taguchi has also considered the energy (work) transfer of a process (efficiency) and his definition of his ‘Ideal Function’ seems quite similar.
    Of course work functions are very much affected by metallurgical interfaces – some are injecting, some are blocking, while others are Ohmic. May I suggest that one of Dr. Taguchi’s greatest contributions to quality technology is the recognition that Ohmic, or linear systems, (additive) are the most reliable, and contribute the least number of losses.
    Best wishes,
    Andy

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    #102385

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Andy:
      I wholly agree with your remarks about linear (i.e. Ohmic) systems being the most stable. 
      This, as you can recognize, is also what Einstein’s photoelectric law, derived from Planck’s blackbody law (highly nonlinear) is telling us.  It is a linear law.  
       Once, we generalize the meaning of “work” and the work function  in Einstein’s law to all linear laws y = hx + c, we have achieved the synthesis that we are looking for.
      As you can tell, I came to this from a different perspective.  I was trained as a mechanical engineer but found metallurgy and materials science to be fascinating.  My doctoral thesis made me think about linear and nonlinear laws, as applied in polymer science, which we tried to extend to metallurgy. But, somewhere along the way, I think, most of all with engineering degrees forgot what Planck really did when he was trying to explain the existence of the maximum point on the radiation curve.
      I should also point out that Millikan considers three types of forces (electrical, gravitational and frictional forces due to viscous effects) acting on his oil drop.  Yet he observes a constant velocity for the oil drop. He then postulates a simple linear law.  Further analysis, with some insight and genius, and a stroke of luck during experimentation, leads him to a method of deducing the electrical charge on one single electron.  Millikan’s law is also a linear one, with a cut-off charge. Only with this cut-off can he fix the “quantum” of charge.  Likewise, we must recognize a cut-off value in most problems before we begin to see the “quantum”.
      I have tried to unravel these mysteries for myself and finally got the courage to make these posts. I am really glad, have found at least one receptive ear – I am thinking of Andy U. 
       I will certainly follow the link you have suggested. Thanks.
     
     

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    #102390

    been whacked….
    Participant

    V.
    This forum is the wrong place to say, “My doctoral thesis……”  Expect to get whacked.   Especially after all of that physics crap (as if it’s really related to the world in which we live anyway).     : )
     
     

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    #102393

    Savage
    Participant

    V.
    I disagree.  I find what you’re posting very interesting. 

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    #102394

    Tim F
    Member

    V,
     
    The analogy with the work function is interesting, but I don’t know that it is a powerful analogy.  For one thing, the energy of the electron coming out is always less than the energy on the photon coming in.  Translating to the money analogy, that says that the money you get out (from improvements you make) is always less than the money you get out (from process imporvement).  Even if you add in some “amplifier” effect, so that the return is greater than the investment above some threshold, there is still a problem.  The model implies that if you keep investing more and more money in 6S (or quality improvement in general) then you will keep reaping bigger & bigger returns. There will always be a point where more money thrown at the problems won’t improve the bottom line, which means that no linear relationship can adaquately model the behavior over a broad range of values. 
     
    I would propose an analogy from chemistry as more appropriate (which pains me because I have a degree in physics!). 
    Some reactions occur spontaneously when the chemicals are brought together, releasing energy (“exothermic” for the chemistry types).  The potential was there, it just required a simple combining of the two parts.  This would be like the “low hanging fruit”, where you see monetary return with little or no effort.
    Some reactions will release energy, but only after some energy is added (the activation energy of the reaction).  For example, you can have a piece of paper sitting in the air all day long with nothing happening.  Add a little outside energy (heat from a flame) and the paper & air will react to release even more energy.  This would be like a 6S project.  The potential to produce more money was there, but some investment of money had to be supplied to to realize the profit. 
    Some reactions, however, suck up energy (“endothermic”).  The reaction may occur spontaneously, or you may have to work at it, but no matter what you do, it is going to suck up energy – or money in this case.  There may be some return, but never as much as was supplied in the first place.  You know the line … “The good news is we saved $100,000 on 6S projects.  The bad news is that we had to spend $200,000 on salaries, training, and new equiment to achieve that savings.”
     
    Tim F 

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    #102395

    PB
    Participant

    Laxmanan,
    The figures you have used for $$ savings from SS for the companies themselves do not reflect the trend in savings. In other words, for GE the savings was 4.4B in 4 years. How much was in first year? How much was in 2nd year? So on. Did the activity in SS increase with each year as savings were realized through SS? Any correlation there?
    Would not there be an intuitive deduction (linear relationship) that if you are spending the money you should be making the money? If there was no gains, there would not be SS in these companies. I presume, with SS, the ‘work’ you are mentioning would be ‘smart’ work not ‘hard’ work.
    PB

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    #102397

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Tim F:
      I am delighted by your post and comments.
      You have provided a beautiful example from chemistry to show that we can get more out of money than we put it in.  How true! 
      In other words, there is nothing like a law of conservation of money alike to the law of conservation of energy, or charge etc . 
      Let me brief here and refer you to Feynman’s Lecture on Physics.  Since you have a degree in physics, I am sure you will be able to find this fascinating volume readily.  In vol. II where Feynman discusses the nature of electrical charge, he makes it very clear that the idea of conservation that we invoke is a myth. Charge travels from point A to point B, as in a flow of electron.  But, electrons take a finite time to go from point A to point B.  Even light takes a finite time.  So, how knows about charge conservation.  We “observe” conservation of charges only “locally” in our experiments, or try to interpret them in terms of charge conservation, mass conservation etc.
       But all this fails, like you point out with money.  But wait, wait. Let’s go back to what you mention and what Einstein.  There is nothing like conservation of mass, or energy only equivalence of mass and energy.  Chemical reactions produce energy, mass disappears but we are unable to measure.  But in nuclear transformations, we can measure the disappearing mass.
      Actually, I have come to the conclusion that, however fascinating, physicists are kidding themselves with their conservations law.
      So, like you say, work function is a good analogy.  But look at y = hx + c again.  W = – c and real world observations say that c can be both positive and negative.  In other words, work function can be negative.  We can use your analogy of exothermic and endothermic reactions as well to explain why W can be both positive and negative. 
      To make relevant to this post, Motorola has a negative W compared to GE.  So, they are getting a lot out of their Six Sigma program than GE for the same revenue level. 
       In fact, EVERYONE involved with Six Sigma should use the graphs I have attached to justify increased management investment in these types of programs.  Lot more “savings” can be produced – several billions of dollar and it will soon wipe out the deficit, if not the national debt.  I came to this forum hoping to find some really intelligent and committed people who will people accomplish great COST SAVINGS!
      We can do the same with producitivy data and show that we are, perhaps, drawing erroneous conclusions about the “efficiency” of U. S. corporations as well – vis-a-vis Toyota, talked about much here yesterday.    

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    #102399

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Matt:
      Thanks. I took as a friendly whack! 
      What can I do? Tell you folks I am a high school dropout!
      By the way, I mentioned my doctoral thesis only to illustrate that real experiments can be performed which will reveal nonlinear behavior – this is true in many cases. 
      But, if you use Planck’s logic, even a nonlinear law has an underlying fixed quantum.  This is contained in the constant “a” in the exponential function exp(-ax) in the general function y = F(x) discussed in an earlier post.  Once , we understand this, and the significance of the work function  (including why it can be negative sometimes, see Tim F’s post as well), we can make great progress.
      Thanks. Have a great weekend.

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    #102400

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear PB:
      All I have done is to use the “numbers” given by Charles Waxer to show how they behave.
      I have no independent expertise in generating those numbers and I don’t want to get into that either. 
      I just want to use the numbers that folks like Waxer generate.  It is much like doing a good experiment.  Good numbers that lead to important conclusions can be obtained only by good experimenters.  
      All I wanted to show that the higher the revenues of a corporation the greater the savings.
      In other words, use this now to JUSTIFY even greater Investment in the Six Sigma Programs.
      As for “smart work” and “hard work”, my dear friend, in physics “work” is “work” and in economics a paycheck is a paycheck, doesn’t matter where and how it comes from. At Motorola they are probably doing “smart” work since they got more out of their program than GE for the same level of revenues.
      I did use the data for individual years and showed that the linear law applies when we consider what is going on year-after-year.  However, in Waxer’s original article the “investment” made in Six Sigma is not given. 
       I am simply guessing, or suggesting that we can take this “investment” $$ as being directly proportional to the yearly revenues.  This makes sense, since you need money to invest in these programs and that can only come from revenues.
      Anyway, thanks again and have a fun weekend.

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    #102402

    been whacked….
    Participant

    Matt, Matt, Matt… come on guy, it was irony.
    As in: Irony –  a : the use of words to express something other than and especially the opposite of the literal meaning b : a usually humorous or sardonic literary style or form characterized by irony

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    #102403

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    My dear … been whacked:
      Thanks.  I take it as a friendly whack – not one meant to hurt.
      After all, good friends, and kids punch each other sometimes.  That’s OK as long as no one is hurt.
      Anyway, I mentioned it only in the context of doing good experiments that can reveal the law y = F(x), both the linear and the nonlinear aspects of it.  Linearity gives way to nonlinearity but even this nonlinear region contains the same fixed quantum h.  This is the significance of what Planck did.  In Planck’s theory a = h/kT and both k and T are not known in other problems where we see nonlinear law.  The significance of the linear region is also lost.  Everything gets lumped into the constants A and n in the power law and we don’t see a “quantum” process.  I wish I had studied more of Planck when I did my thesis.  I don’t know that I would have concluded then.
      May be they would have “flunked” me and never let me graduate!
      Regarding the physics crap, please do read my response to Tim F’ s post.  Physics is full of interesting contradictions – even if physicists do not recognize it – actually I am pointing out some of the difficulties. 
      But, what I am doing may be simply looked at using math logic.  This is what Galileo did (no theory), Kepler did (no theory) and Planck did (first, with no theory). 
       If we use math intelligently and the power of mathematical logic, we can learn a lot of things.  That is what I said in the post now called Maximum Point on the Defect-Opportunities Curve.
      Math certainly applies to the world we live in!  We all learn how to count and from combinatorial analysis we arrive at the notion of entropy and energy and use Profits = (Revenues – Costs) like we use energy balance in physics. What I am doing, my friend, is real world stuff – not physics – I just use to call attention to those who might not.
      The physics want to whack me but believe the financial folks might want to shoot me.  I thought Six Sigma was a safer bet!
       Have a nice weekend and enjoy every minute you are here!
     
      

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    #102404

    Anonymous
    Guest

    Dear V,
    The literature has many examples of how ‘conservation of energy’ have helped physicists to solve many problems. Surely, it is a matter of how you define a system boundary?
    What can you tell us about the application of Six Sigma at General Motors Research? Do you think your work function will help them out perform Toyota and design cars where you don’t bang your head when you get in?  :-)
    Best wishes,
    Andy

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    #102405

    been whacked….
    Participant

    V.
    Polite and professional that you are, let me go back to irony for just a second, the physics comment was irony – as I thought the following comment regarding its applicability to life would indicate.   But sometimes irony is just seen as sarcasm – so, sorry about not being clear.  The other part of the irony was my own joke about my getting roundly whacked when I mentioned, I thought innocently enough, my own PhD (hench the “been whacked”).   It was more of a heads-up joke.    

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    #102407

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Being whacked:
      As you can see, I did not take offense to your “being whacked” comment. 
       I kind of sensed it was meant to be just good natured sarcasm, etc.
      It would be very surprising indeed if I many who are reading these posts did not have advanced degrees, if not doctoral degrees, in various disciples.  As I have gathered over the last few days, there are those here who have worked with Deming and Taguchi.  Others have studied Shewhart.  All these gurus also had doctoral degrees.  So, I did not feel it would be inappropriate to make those comments, especially in the context of “convincing” the reader that deviations from linearity can be detected, experimentally, even by a total moron – like me, given the right conditions and circumstances!
        More than physics, I think it is the power of mathematical logic (see my response to some other comments, I can’t remember which one now) that is at work here.  Physics is just a way of rationalizing these things.  The laws of physics that have remained unchanged are all empirical laws, deduced using mathematical logic, like the laws of Galileo, Kepler and the radiation law by Planck.  Even if we discard quantum theory (like we discarded Newton’s gravity theory) we would still have to explain the maximum point on the radiation curve.
      Now, I am turning the argument around.  There is a quantum – let’s find the maximum point.  At the maximum point, defects are at their highest.  Going down from there, profits must increase!   Which way down the hill?  East or West?  I don’t know.  I tell you after we find the peak! 
      Anyway, cheers and enjoy your weekend.  More coming next week – I have been thinking about Chebyshev’s theorem and how it applies to Six Sigma and DPMO!   
     

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    #102408

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Andy:
    You ask,
      What can you tell us about the application of Six Sigma at General Motors Research? Do you think your work function will help them out perform Toyota and design cars where you don’t bang your head when you get in?  :-)
       Much of what you and other have seen posted this week as a result of my concern for why GM, Ford, and Chrysler, were not able to outperform Toyota.  I started wondering about this during the strike in 1998 that brought all GM manufacturing operations to a full and complete halt.
      I can tell you – GM is outperforming Toyota – just look at the latest Harbour Report on Productivity.  Several GM brands are in the top ten with Toyota at the bottom.
      Before I could spread the word about the work function at GM, there were changes so sweeping it was beyond my control! 
      But, I think it can be done. Not just at GM, but also at Ford, at DaimlerChrysler and other “aging” good ole American companies which have been perceived as being inefficient.  I have studied productivity data and profitability data as well using the work function idea. The results are surprising and destroy the “myth” that Toyota, Honda, Nissan are more efficient than Chrysler, Ford, and GM. 
      Toyota is succeeding in the market place because of the very high value it has placed on customer satisfaction – after the car is sold. If GM would do the same, it can bounce back.
      The only thing that saddens me if Lexus is beating the pants off Cadillac! Here I am sure the work function will be needed!
      There is a niche market for those willing to pay more than $150K for their cars and Lexus is already targeting this segment, according to a recent consumer research (reported in a recent issue of Automotive News – a couple of weeks ago!)
      Anway, thanks and have a great weekend. May be you should send an email to the VP of GM Research about  this work function!      
     

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    #102409

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear been whacked:
      How about this? 
      Let’s start a discussion on the irony of physics.  Looks like there are others who think physics does not apply to the real world!
      I started by talking about things like how much work can a horse do?  That’s kind of settled!  
      We know how much work a dishwasher can do, or a washing machine can do. 
      Looks like we also know how much work Six Sigma teams do.
      But the question that keeps bugging me is: How much work can a computer do?  How do we measure this? Anyone want to take this up and write a treatise or two! 

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    #102410

    been wacked….
    Participant

    Actually V., if you want a theoretical discussion aimed at exploring the capacity to exponentially broaden the contribution of Six Sigma through the use of somewhat esoteric advanced computational mathematics, I am most interested in complexity theory and its potential use in integrating non-intuitive predictive modeling with Six Sigma analytics.    You would be finding and dealing with variance patterns where none are otherwise thought to exist.   Formulas deriving fractals and their intertwining and infinitely replicating patterns provide more than op art, they represent, in my opinion, the true boundaries of human thought and comprehension – at least the boundaries for my limited comprehension.   I was fortunate to spend some time at the Santa Fe Institute a few years ago and the interdisciplinary complexity work being done there is truly incredible.  Bring computational complexity theory to thinking about processes as dynamic, self-evolving complex systems and the 1.5 sigma shift gets buried in the mundane as the fudge factor it is.   If I had a chance to live research, that would be it.  But, as most of us are, I’m impacted more by the pragmatic dealing with what’s in front of me that I can see, touch and analyze – earning a living with readily available tools.    
     Have a good weekend also.  

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    #102411

    Tim F
    Member

    V,I encourage you to continue with your train of thought. It would be quite valuable to know what kind of return to expect on investments in 6S. It is a topic that is debated but many people at many levelsHowever, let me offer two bits of advice…I) With control charts, it is suggested to collect at least 20 – 25 sets of data before trying to interpret the results. You have so few data points for your “6S Work Function” analogy, that it is hard to be convinced by the results. You may be on the right track, but the data are still to sparse to convince me.II) I think you push the analogies with physics a bit much. To be effective using an analogy, you must 1) have the proper grasp of the original topic, 2) have a situation where new idea has strong similarities with the original idea, and 3) have an audience that understands the original idea well enough to use it as a starting point. I see bits of each of these problems creeping in at different point in different analogies. Tim F

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    #102412

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Tim F:
      Regarding point 1:
       I spent the last six years (just coincidence) studying lots and lots of data.  So, although we have only limited data for cost savings, I don’t hesitate much and believe we have much to gain by looking at this work function.  Did you look at the graphs that I attached on Millikan’s experiments.  That’s all that was done before the idea of work function and Planck constant h was accepted by physicists.
    Regarding point 2: 
       I have to agree.  But, we have to start somewhere.
       If you invite me to spend a day discussing these things with an interested group, I am sure everyone can be on the same wavelength soon.  My degrees are in engineering, not physics!  This is called interdisciplinary thinking.  It is called thinking out of the box.  That’s what Six Sigma training manual preach.  Now let’s practice it.
        I studied these fundamental physics experiments, as I began to see that data – good experimental data – was telling me that Planck’s formula for the radiation law (pure math and curve fitting of data) was working in problems outside physics.  The analogy is useful – that’s all but the math is what we are dealing with here. I think I am repeating myself. 
       By the way, I took a long time before anyone paid much attention to what Planck had done.  It was Einstein’s photoelectric law, simple and direct, that caught the attention of experimenters.
      And Einstein’s theory of relativity did not land him a job either.  When he attached those papers with his resume, he was told that the papers were incomprehensible and that he was, therefore, unfit for any academic position – I am not kidding !
       You will not hear me talking much more about physics, I assure you.  This group has now heard the basic ideas from me.  I would like to spend time discussing experimental results. 
       If the forum encourages me, I will show you how to reinterpret data in classical statistics text books using the work function idea. I have studied coin tossing experiments as well the Shewhart normal bowl extensively used this idea.

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    #102413

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear been whacked:
       Formulas deriving fractals and their intertwining and infinitely replicating patterns provide more than op art, they represent, in my opinion, the true boundaries of human thought and comprehension – at least the boundaries for my limited comprehension.   I was fortunate to spend some time at the Santa Fe Institute a few years ago and the interdisciplinary complexity work being done there is truly incredible.  Bring computational complexity theory to thinking about processes as dynamic, self-evolving complex systems and the 1.5 sigma shift gets buried in the mundane as the fudge factor it is.   If I had a chance to live research, that would be it.
      I am delighted to hear about your interests!  I can tell you this fractal business may be fascinating but it did not accomplish much.  Have you heard about dendrites?  They did experiments in the space shuttle but they could not explain the experimental data.  If you look at the literature, you will see that I have shown where the weaknesses lie in the “theories” that were being used to interpret the data. 
      This is what I have done most of my life. I look at experimental observations and then search for a mathematical model – a simple one – that fits the observations.  This is what I learned from my study of Galileo and Planck’s work and Millikan’s work most importantly.  
      We can extend this to Six Sigma studies.  Billions of dollars in cost savings can be realized.  I wish Waxer had provided more data.  I don’t know if Waxer has seen my post. Is anyone anywhere any more comprehensive study by Waxer, or anyone else on revenues, cost savings, investment in Six Sigma. 
      If you are interested let’s create a forum to discuss these things – may be a one day workshop. I am game.  It’s summer but the days are getting shorter! 
      My next post will be about this 1.5 sigma shift.  May be we don’t need it, or even the normal or Gaussian distribution to understand what we have to do with this Six Sigma initiative. We can start with Chebyshev’s theorem and use it in an interesting way.
      Have fun – but don’t get whacked over the weekend! 

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    #102416

    Anonymous
    Guest

    Dear V,
    I didn’t understand your answer to my question: What can you tell us about the application of Six Sigma in General Motors Research; although by implication I did understand your answer to my second question .. thank you. (I did hear at one time that GM used Shainin Methods – can this still true?)
     As for your reference, the Harbour Report: I don’t think productivity is at the top of most customer’s “Must Haves” or “Wants.” All I know is it that I wouldn’t buy a GM car because I always bang my hear on the door jam when I climb in. It happens with no other type of car!
    I look forward to your view on the 1.5 sigma shift – the approach I took was to compare the control limits of an X-bar and R chart (subgroup size = 3) for a subset of n = 30 with the theoretical control limits of a N(0.1) simulated distribution.  I found that there is indeed a shift, but it is no greater than about 0.6 sigma. Since as a previous poster mentioned, it is usual to take 20 to 30 subgroups to estimate process capability, the shift would be negligible. 
    Cheers,
    Andy

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    #102419

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Andy:
      I agree 100% that productivity is not a MUST HAVE. 
      Unfortunately, Wall Street equates poor productivity with lost profits and the whole American manufacturing sector has been “whacked” by this pervavise view of poor American labor productivity vis-a-vis the Japanese.
      I have studied the BLS data productivity of the U. S. manufacturing sector, for the past 40 quarters, using the idea of a work function and would be happy to send an article on this topic to you, if you give me an email ID. Or, if there is general interest, I would be happy to post it here.
      I have finished my (short) article on how we can combine the teachings of the Chebyshev theorem with the generalization of Planck’s radiation law that I have suggested as the operating curve for any process.  Combined with good empirical observations, we can achieve the DPMO we are looking for and essentially forget the 1.5 shift now being used.  
      Of course, please bear in mind this is coming from someone with degrees in mechanical and materials engineering, not in statistics. So, if you want to whack me after reading it – I promise not to cry!
      Still having fun.  Have a great weekend.
    Laxman

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    #102421

    Anonymous
    Guest

    Dear V,
    If you search Andy Urquhart under Google, you’ll find my email address.
    I found your hotmail account, your paper on dendrites, and other interesting stuff using a Meta search.
    I believe taht most folks in this forum will judge you on your substance and debating skills and not on your qualifications, which is what we’ve only come to expect on the shop floor – common sense and clear, concise explanations.
    It’s been a pleasure, but I agree with one of the previous posters that for some of the more esoteric discussions we ought not to clutter this forum. I have plenty of time at present because I’m currently without any assignments, as much of British manufacturing has relocated to China. Oh, and most R&D types in Cambridge believe that stats can only be used for very large sample sizes.
    Cheers,
    Andy

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    #102422

    Nwajei
    Participant

    (“been whacked” is getting a little old, so I’ll use “Frank”, it’s as good as any and easy to spell)
     
    V., you are too smart a guy not to know this, so as I feel compelled to walk down this path of exploring your response, I feel a bit like I’m walking into a set-up, but venture into it I will.  You espouse the contributions of dendrite analysis over fractal analysis, but since Julia sets formed from the tentacles of the Mandelbrot set are dendrites, where do you draw separation and distinction? Is the dendrite merely a subset of the fractal? As a materials guy you know that MnO2 dendrites grown on Solnhofen chalks are examples of geochemical fractals in sedimentary rock – ergo becoming dendrite-fractal representatives, which goes back as an analogy to your space exploration example.  The fractal is the graphic depiction of many different formulaic approaches to analyzing complex dynamic systems.
     Regarding your offer to co-start a forum dedicated to this line of thought or to develop a workshop, I would be a devotee of your forum and would like to attend your workshop, but we are already close to the extent of my subject matter comprehension and I am not qualified to help.  Intriguing thought though.  Thanks

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    #102424

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Frank:
       To me, at least, fractals are what mathematicians created in their minds. Dendrites, on the other hand, is what Mother Nature has created – in the form of snowflakes and other beautiful Christmas-tree like structure that you see when many metals freeze and make up the engine block of your car.  They take the heat while enjoy the comfort. 
      I remember an old friend of mine talking about crystals that he grows in his lab and “paper crystals” that are grown by those who do numerical simulations.
      I am sorry to hear though that you are not signing up to be the chairperson of the organizing committee for this workshop that I was trying to get going. More than any workshop, I am actually looking to see if those here start using the idea of a work function to analyze their own observations on defects and opportunities.
      Let’s keep this up.  Something is bound to happen.  Thanks.    
     
    Laxman
     
    P. S.  I had to keep using “been whacked” because that’s what I had to go by.  
     
     

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    #102425

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Andy:
    ….will judge you on your substance and debating skills
       ….I am not so sure about these skills … … 
       and not on your qualifications, which is what we’ve only come to expect on the shop floor – common sense and clear, concise explanations.
      …..I have been on the shop floor…..
      It’s been a pleasure, but I agree with one of the previous posters that for some of the more esoteric discussions we ought not to clutter this forum.  (I agree, I was just trying to provide some background.)
     I have plenty of time at present because I’m currently without any assignments, as much of British manufacturing has relocated to China.
      –  I have studied both Chinese and Indian companies and compared them with U. S. companies.  Haven’t had time to look at European companies yet. 
     Oh, and most R&D types in Cambridge believe that stats can only be used for very large sample sizes.
       Gauss was able to predict the position of the asteroid Ceres (discovered on New Year’s day 1801) using just a few known observations on this asteroid. After Legendre published in work on least squares (in 1805), Gauss claimed priority.  So, history tells me you don’t need “large” sample sizes.  Also, look at what Millikan did with his photoelectricity experiments to establish the Planck constant h. He has just siz points for sodium and about the same number of lithium. The world changed with just these two data sets and the “average” slope that Millikan determines without any least squares arguments. 
       not on your qualifications … I agree. Doesn’t matter. 
       ….I just wanted some of the younger folks here to know why I seem to be invoking the quantum “mantra” they never learned in BB school. 

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    #102426

    Nwajei
    Participant

    V., I’m beginning to see the juxtaposition of our thoughts.  The thinking is along a somewhat common line, but you are taking the literal and deriving theory and I am attempting to move from theory to the literal – and not doing it as well as you have, I must note.  Interesting.  As in naturally occurring dendrites versus “unnaturally” occurring mathematical fractals – resultant shape sameness notwithstanding.  Perhaps further analysis will meet in the middle.

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    #102428

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Frank:
      I am delighted to learn we are finding the common ground.
      It is Mother Nature that we must observe. 
      Every great discovery that led to what we call physics arose from such observations and a desire to understand what they mean.
     If you have, or have access to, any experimental observations on defects produced in a real world manufacturing process, let me know. We can begin analyzing it and we will, very soon, come together, right in the middle like you say. 
      I encourage you, if you haven’t already, to read Heisenberg’s book Encounters with Einstein, which I have cited in my posts. It is published by Princeton University Press and is readily available.
      Regards.
       
      Laxman

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    #102429

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Frank:
    ……but you are taking the literal and deriving theory and I am attempting to move from theory to the literal –
       Actually, in the case of Six Sigma, by suggesting that we explore the possible validity of the generalization of Planck’s radiation law, as our law relating defects y and opportunities x, I may be guilty of the latter, i.e., taking theory and attempting to move to the literal.
       I have never done this before, I must say, but I have seen enough this “work function” to come to believe that we must see another real world problem where the mathematical generalization of Planck’s radiation law might actually be observed.  Six Sigma studies offer – no pun intended – an ideal “opportunity”.    

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    #102430

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Frank:
      I am delighted to learn we are finding the common ground.
      It is Mother Nature that we must observe. 
      Every great discovery that led to what we call physics arose from such observations and a desire to understand what they mean.
       …….. Sorry…..
      I didn’t mean to leave out chemistry and biology for sure and even economics.  All these sciences were developed by observing Mother Nature.  Even in economics there is a “quantum”, but we are “tinkering” with it continuously. 
      But then Planck talks about time-averaging in the very first paragraph of his December 1900 paper. …….  In other words, the existence of a “quantum” can only be inferred after some, or shall we say proper, time-averaging.  Again, if I can tempt you, please read Planck’s original paper.  Again, I have cited readily available references where you can find it.
    Regards.
    Laxman

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    #102431

    Tim F
    Member

    V.I’d like to understand what you are saying, and I certainly wouldn’t mind getting a few bucks from CEO’s to explain how physics will save them from bad quality. But I need some clarification. I’m not quite sure how to discuss your ideas without knowing just what it is you are getting at. For example…>Now, I am turning the argument around. There is a quantum
    What is that is quantized in any sort of business or industrial analogy?Now, I am turning the argument around. There is a quantum
    What is that is quantized in any sort of business or industrial analogy?Now, I am turning the argument around. There is a quantum
    What is that is quantized in any sort of business or industrial analogy?>- let’s find the maximum point.
    Maximum of what? What graph are you plotting and what are on the axes?- let’s find the maximum point.
    Maximum of what? What graph are you plotting and what are on the axes?- let’s find the maximum point.
    Maximum of what? What graph are you plotting and what are on the axes?>At the maximum point, defects are at their highest.
    So you are plotting defects vs ???At the maximum point, defects are at their highest.
    So you are plotting defects vs ???At the maximum point, defects are at their highest.
    So you are plotting defects vs ???>Going down from there, profits must increase! Which way down the hill?
    >East or West? I don’t know. I tell you after we find the peak!
    Maximum profits don’t necessarily occur when defects are a minimum. Going down from there, profits must increase! Which way down the hill?
    >East or West? I don’t know. I tell you after we find the peak!
    Maximum profits don’t necessarily occur when defects are a minimum. Going down from there, profits must increase! Which way down the hill?
    >East or West? I don’t know. I tell you after we find the peak!
    Maximum profits don’t necessarily occur when defects are a minimum. East or West? I don’t know. I tell you after we find the peak!
    Maximum profits don’t necessarily occur when defects are a minimum. East or West? I don’t know. I tell you after we find the peak!
    Maximum profits don’t necessarily occur when defects are a minimum. >The only thing that saddens me if Lexus is beating the pants off Cadillac!
    >Here I am sure the work function will be needed!
    What will you be using this work function to analyze? Design effort affecting customer satisfaction? Employee effort affecting productivity? Investment in 6S affecting profits? The only thing that saddens me if Lexus is beating the pants off Cadillac!
    >Here I am sure the work function will be needed!
    What will you be using this work function to analyze? Design effort affecting customer satisfaction? Employee effort affecting productivity? Investment in 6S affecting profits? The only thing that saddens me if Lexus is beating the pants off Cadillac!
    >Here I am sure the work function will be needed!
    What will you be using this work function to analyze? Design effort affecting customer satisfaction? Employee effort affecting productivity? Investment in 6S affecting profits? Here I am sure the work function will be needed!
    What will you be using this work function to analyze? Design effort affecting customer satisfaction? Employee effort affecting productivity? Investment in 6S affecting profits? Here I am sure the work function will be needed!
    What will you be using this work function to analyze? Design effort affecting customer satisfaction? Employee effort affecting productivity? Investment in 6S affecting profits? >This law, rewritten as y = hx + c, can be extended to study many problems well beyond physics…
    Do you simply mean that a straight line is a good way to fit many common sorts of data? Or do you mean that particular processes have a “work function” – a natural barrier that inhibits every effort for change? Or do you mean something else?This law, rewritten as y = hx + c, can be extended to study many problems well beyond physics…
    Do you simply mean that a straight line is a good way to fit many common sorts of data? Or do you mean that particular processes have a “work function” – a natural barrier that inhibits every effort for change? Or do you mean something else?This law, rewritten as y = hx + c, can be extended to study many problems well beyond physics…
    Do you simply mean that a straight line is a good way to fit many common sorts of data? Or do you mean that particular processes have a “work function” – a natural barrier that inhibits every effort for change? Or do you mean something else?>I am actually looking to see if those here start using the idea of a work function
    >to analyze their own observations on defects and opportunities.
    How would you do this analysis? The equation you gave was y = hx + c. What would each letter represent in your analysis of defects?I am actually looking to see if those here start using the idea of a work function
    >to analyze their own observations on defects and opportunities.
    How would you do this analysis? The equation you gave was y = hx + c. What would each letter represent in your analysis of defects?I am actually looking to see if those here start using the idea of a work function
    >to analyze their own observations on defects and opportunities.
    How would you do this analysis? The equation you gave was y = hx + c. What would each letter represent in your analysis of defects?to analyze their own observations on defects and opportunities.
    How would you do this analysis? The equation you gave was y = hx + c. What would each letter represent in your analysis of defects?to analyze their own observations on defects and opportunities.
    How would you do this analysis? The equation you gave was y = hx + c. What would each letter represent in your analysis of defects?>…where the mathematical generalization of Planck’s radiation law
    >might actually be observed.
    Planck’s equation creates a curve very much like a binomial distribution – it starts at zero, curves up to a maximum, then slowly tapers off. Do you have a specific reason to apply a Planck-type equations, rather than a binomial or a lognormal, or any number of other curves of this basic shape?…where the mathematical generalization of Planck’s radiation law
    >might actually be observed.
    Planck’s equation creates a curve very much like a binomial distribution – it starts at zero, curves up to a maximum, then slowly tapers off. Do you have a specific reason to apply a Planck-type equations, rather than a binomial or a lognormal, or any number of other curves of this basic shape?…where the mathematical generalization of Planck’s radiation law
    >might actually be observed.
    Planck’s equation creates a curve very much like a binomial distribution – it starts at zero, curves up to a maximum, then slowly tapers off. Do you have a specific reason to apply a Planck-type equations, rather than a binomial or a lognormal, or any number of other curves of this basic shape?might actually be observed.
    Planck’s equation creates a curve very much like a binomial distribution – it starts at zero, curves up to a maximum, then slowly tapers off. Do you have a specific reason to apply a Planck-type equations, rather than a binomial or a lognormal, or any number of other curves of this basic shape?might actually be observed.
    Planck’s equation creates a curve very much like a binomial distribution – it starts at zero, curves up to a maximum, then slowly tapers off. Do you have a specific reason to apply a Planck-type equations, rather than a binomial or a lognormal, or any number of other curves of this basic shape?Right now it is just all too nebulous for me to really sink my teeth into. I believe there may be some good ideas in your work, but they need to be focused before they are ready to stimulate the next round of quality improvement inititives. Perhaps a more detailed discussion or meeting would help the ideas crystallize; perhaps it would just help them dissolve.
    Tim F

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    #102435

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Tim F:
    I appreciate the time you are giving me and the detailed questions posed. I have been through exactly this with some others who I get a chance to talk with one-on-one. 
    The best answer now is the short one. Read Planck’s original paper and master it thoroughly.  Read Millikan’s papers and understand how he determines the quantum of electrical charge and the Planck constant. Then at least try to understand what Einstein says in his 1905 paper on photoelectricity.  I say this, because the first part of this paper is just as “nebulous” as my ideas seem to you.  I had ignored this part of Einstein’s paper for several years.  I finally understood what Einstein was trying to do in this part of his paper just a few months ago – when I started working on this Six Sigma application of a “work function” and a “quantum”.  
    Finally, start applying y = hx + c to make sense of data that are being generated every day outside physics.  Just take a look again at the linear relation between revenues and Six Sigma savings at GE which I plotted, based on Waxer’s data.  The more the revenues of a company the higher potential savings from Six Sigma programs.  (We do not know the investment made, unfortunately not available in Waxer’s article).      
    If you do this, either you might start seeing what I am seeing.  Or, it might all just dissolve, as you conclude – I hope ironically!
    To conclude, I am not interested in just disseminating some theoretical ideas here.  I would like to, with help from the Six Sigma community, to really initiate some programs that make an even bigger impact in all major corporations – even at GE, which is not faring as well as Motorola!  I am glad some like you are at least paying attention.  
    My best regards and thanks.   

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    #102436

    Nwajei
    Participant

    Tim F.,I was having enough difficulty tracking with V., who I believe to be a very bright fellow, but your posting really confused me.  What are you trying to say with your incredibly repetitious paragraph structure?   Is there a message within the message?   You could challenge The Rule of Four’s Hypnerotomachia Poliphili for most obtuse communiqué.    And I don’t mean that as an insult. Frank

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    #102438

    Tim F
    Member

    Frank (& V and anyone else with the stamina to still be following this thread),I don’t know just why some parts of the post seem to have multiplied. I didn’t intend to repeat the sentences multiple time and I could swear that’s not how it looked as I was getting ready to post it. The wonders of electronic communications!
    In any case, I was trying to get some more specific details from V but asking about specific statements he made during the course of this discussion. I think I’ll try communicating with V. Laxmanan directly via email so that we can get on the same wavelength without undo clogging of this forum.Tim F

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    #102439

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Tim F:
      I was wondering about the multiple sentence and suspected the electronic bug!
     I look forward to your email.  

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    #102440

    sciencefreak..
    Member

    Hey V
    Count us in.Afterall there are few other science freaks here.Went through your attachements and am feeling my strings of my hair spiked..Can I get your email..You theory sounds interesting but this forum doesnt have so much space to accomodate so many questions that arise on so many people’s mind here..So, why do’nt you get an id in spymac(they offer 1GB) and then we can shoot up our questions there???…
     

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    #102441

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Hi sciencefreak:
      Nice to hear that some here find the science to be of interest.  My email ID is given in the attachments.  But here it is:
    [email protected]
      Let’s see if we can get this to higher and more productive levels. Regards.
    Laxman

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    #102488

    Arora
    Participant

    Hi V,
    Your relation to linear equation(y=mx+c) with the y=hx+c was a good one.But, the idea that the value of “h” being a constant for all the companies is something which does’nt appeal to me.
    The linear equation is as ever y=mx+c where m is the slope and c-constant.There are several other discoveries that utilises this linear equation.The correlation and regression analysis is it’s business application.It’s also obvious that the valus of the m,c depends on the nature of the system as much as the x and y.All the companies you have mentined seem to for the directly proportaional relationship between Revenue Vs Saving except GE(So, how do you explain it for GE – noise?)
    I don’t understand the whole idea of connecting physical experiments and equations in trying to establish a linear equation which is so commonly in used directly to find the relationship with X,Y s in many SS applications.What am I not understanding in your approach?
     

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    #102490

    V. Laxmanan
    Member

    Dear Kris:
    All the companies you have mentioned seem to for the directly proportional relationship between Revenue Vs Saving except GE(So, how do you explain it for GE – noise?)
    This is a question I wanted to hear.  How do you explain it for GE?
    Simple, I was not observing GE.  I was not a part of the GE Six Sigma team. So, I don’t know all the reasons.  Neither was I at Motorola.  However the teams at GE and Motorola can compare notes and find out the reasons. Or, we can, once we gather data for each GE division, find how they are performing relative to each other and starting comparing work functions. The analysis tells you that GE can improve. 
    It is sort of like an athlete observing his own behavior. Now we know that GE is falling behind Motorola, or even Ford, Allied Signal and Honeywell. Now we can tell what is possible at GE. 
    More observations are required on GE itself to make the leaps that I think can be made.  Thanks.
    Laxman

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