User-generated content

Much has been made over the past few years about the value of and potential for user-generated content—content created by visitors to a Web site. Much of the benefit derived so far from this type of content has been in user reviews. Numerous research projects have shown that Internet users place more credence in user reviews than in those from other so...

10/01/2009


Much has been made over the past few years about the value of and potential for user-generated content—content created by visitors to a Web site. Much of the benefit derived so far from this type of content has been in user reviews. Numerous research projects have shown that Internet users place more credence in user reviews than in those from other sources. And Internet visitors are, at least to some degree, relying on these reviews to help make buying decisions. For example, MediaPost reports that nearly 70% of online shoppers read at least four reviews of a product before purchasing it, while almost a quarter of people check eight reviews or more.

Beyond the value of user reviews on a particular product is the value to be derived from shared opinion and discussion. That type of conversation, enabled by the Internet, is what brings the peer-to-peer discussion so sought after at industry events to interested parties on a daily basis, regardless of where they may happen to be.

Control Engineering’s groups on LinkedIn ( budurl.com/celinkedin ) and Facebook ( budurl.com/cefacebook ) are now home to more than 100 such discussions. It’s been the most exciting development of our entire experiment with social media—so much so that we are now committed to developing some of these discussions into feature article content for the print publication and our Web site.

The first of these articles appears in this issue—“Integrated Safety: Has Its Time Arrived?”

Beginning as a discussion point linking to Siemens’ Charlie Fialkowski’s post on Safetybase.com , the conversation quickly grew to more than 20 user-generated comments (seven of which I had to save before being deleted from the news feed on LinkedIn to use as part of the article in this issue). The comments came from engineers, consultants, and industry vendor representatives, with all sides of the issue being well-represented: for it, against it, and possible under given certain circumstances.

Overall, the comments were well-mannered and insightful, though things did get heated in a few instances. Most importantly, everyone on each side of the issue had an opportunity to comment and share in the discussion and mutual learning experience.

Control Engineering will be featuring similar articles based on our social media group discussions every other month beginning in January 2010. So let your voice be heard—participate in the discussions and feel free to start some compelling content of your own.

david.greenfield@reedbusiness.com





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The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
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Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
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This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
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Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
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This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
April 2018
Cybersecurity best practices, artificial intelligence, robotic additive manufacturing, embedded systems, IIoT integration, energy efficiency
March 2018
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DCS visibility, alarm management, motors and drives, robotic machining, Engineers' Choice winners
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Automation and controls continue to help HMI hardware and software advance. As computing capabilities progress, hardware has become more rugged with less maintenance required, with wider environmental capabilities, and integrated input/output (I/O) connections.
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ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
February 2018
Focus on power systems, process safety, electrical and power systems, edge computing in the oil & gas industry
December 2017
Product of the Year winners, Pattern recognition, Engineering analytics, Revitalize older pump installations
John O. Ayuk, PE, CFSE, PMP, CAP
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Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
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This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
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This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
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This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
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The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by Control Engineering subscribers. Vote now (if qualified)!
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The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
System Integrator of the Year
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
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This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Wireless Reliability in Harsh Environments
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
Human Factors and the Impact on Plant Safety
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
April 2018
Cybersecurity best practices, artificial intelligence, robotic additive manufacturing, embedded systems, IIoT integration, energy efficiency
March 2018
Digitalization integration, process sensors, edge computing, fog computing, condition monitoring, and motors
February 2018
DCS visibility, alarm management, motors and drives, robotic machining, Engineers' Choice winners
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Automation and controls continue to help HMI hardware and software advance. As computing capabilities progress, hardware has become more rugged with less maintenance required, with wider environmental capabilities, and integrated input/output (I/O) connections.
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Articles in this digital report highlight technologies that enable Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies.
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This article collection contains several articles on how advancements in vision system designs, computing power, algorithms, optics, and communications are making machine vision more cost effective than ever before.
SIDB

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

April 2018
ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
February 2018
Focus on power systems, process safety, electrical and power systems, edge computing in the oil & gas industry
December 2017
Product of the Year winners, Pattern recognition, Engineering analytics, Revitalize older pump installations
John O. Ayuk, PE, CFSE, PMP, CAP
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
Doug Baker
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Jose S. Vasquez, Jr.
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Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
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This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
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This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
Critical Power: Hospital Electrical Systems
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
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