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14 SMT007 MAGAZINE I JANUARY 2021 Lasky: The most important thing is deciding what you want to improve. We all know people who spend a lot of time doing something well, but it's the wrong thing or not what should be worked that hard on. Matties: You have to staff a continuous improve- ment effort, meaning you may have to have somebody whose job title is "continuous im- provement facilitator" to facilitate the process. Lasky: If there isn't a champion of something, it will die. There has to be a champion. I com- pletely agree. Matties: If you hire somebody to be your con- tinuous improvement facilitator, that return on investment will be astronomical if you bring in the right person. Lasky: Philip B. Crosby has a great quote: "Qual- ity is free. It's not a gift, but it's free." What he meant by that is exactly what you're saying. You're going to have to put some investment in it, and it should save you much more than the investment, but if you're not willing to do that, you're not going to get anything. Matties: It's always a pleasure. Thank you so much. Lasky: Thank you. SMT007 low the agreed-upon process. It's one thing to have a map and to say, "Here's our process." But if you're not disciplined with the process, then you have too much variation for real con- tinuous improvement. Lasky: We talked about DMAIC earlier. Control is the last phase of it, and keeping it in con- trol is the hardest because people will slip back into old habits. You have to have a "champion" who is responsible for control and ensure that the old habits don't return. Matties: It's easy for people to circumvent a process and think that it will be better to take that shortcut because they're behind schedule or whatever the case may be. That's when the discipline to stick to the process is the most important. Holden: One of the things about a process is that you have to define the metrics. With respect to this equation, what if your X is noth- ing but opinion? It's not always easy to get a measurable metric that is the right measure of performance. With "figure of merit," you use expert opinions and a methodology to come up with data. That's your X. Everybody under- stands continuous improvement when they see X=X c – 1. But what if you measure the wrong thing, or you don't know how to measure it, or you can't define it? The ability to understand how structural changes char- acterize the function of materials which are used for low- power, ultra-responsive devices called memristors, is important to improve their performance. However, looking inside the 3D nanoscale devices is difficult using traditional techniques. The team used the technique to investigate the materials used in random access memo- ries, while in operation. The results will allow detailed study of these materials, which are used in memory devices. To solve this issue, the researchers had to reliably con- struct cavities only a few billionths of a metre across— small enough to trap light within the device. They used the tiny gap between a gold nanoparticle and a mirror and observed how the light was modified when the device was functioning cor- rectly or breaking down. (University of Cambridge) Squeezing Light Inside Memory Devices Could Help Improve Performance

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