Computer Integrated Manufacturing and Its Impact on Engineering and the Profession 850750
For the first half of this century, North American industry remained unchallenged as the provider of high quality, low cost products to consumers throughout the world. The product spectrum spanned the range from home appliances through all modes of transportation to heavy equipment and agricultural machinery, and dominated the market in aviation. That traditional leaderhip has been lost, and offshore manufacturers now provide a competitive environment of high quality, low cost products with which our North American industry finds it difficult to compete with traditional manufacturing techniques. This paper examines the competitive relationship and the modifications which must be made to our traditional manufacturing activities to reduce cost, improve quality, and regain our competitive global posture.