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Richard Erlacher
01/30/12 10:45
Read: 696 times
Denver, Co

#185731 - We'll just have to agree to disagree, I guess ...
Responding to: Per Westermark's previous message
Per Westermark said:
Many of these "crap" items are actually of very good quality.

Of that I'm not so sure. It's true, the flashlight/laser-pointer that I carry on my keychain cost just under $1.50US including the postage from China, which is less than what I would have had to pay for the batteries contained in it. However, I bought two of them so that my wife could carry one on her keychain as well. Mine works just fine, after three months, while hers fell apart after three or four days. I don't know what one can conclude about quality, but the way in which the threads were rolled into the thin sheet-metal housing clearly has a problem. I know how my wife handles her keychain, and it does not suffer extreme abuse. Since the light came with a key ring on it, it's clear that it was intended for exactly that application.

Technology have given us great production machinery, so a cheap power drill can be extremely good in relation to the cost.

I've owned a number of power drills, none of which were of purportedly "top-drawer" quality, yet the ones I bought back in the '70's still work just as well as ever, while the battery-operated ones I purchased more recently have broken down, in only one case because of the batteries.

Lots of people don't need professional gear because they don't have professional needs. Why buy an expensive power drill when you need to drill two holes/year? Why bind money in equipment you are not going to use?

The problem has found its way into "professional" equipment. The quality issue is more burdensome for professional users than it is for home users. I have two stepsons who use such tools every day, and, though they buy the very best quality available, they do it several times a year.

So people buy expensive battery-driven screw drivers. And when they finally need them, the battery is dead. And even if high-end, they find that the local store do no longer sell a replacement battery but can order one that will arrive next week. The alternative is to buy a "no-name" product that costs the same as one battery of the brand product. And have maybe 70% battery capacity/strength but about same lifetime as the brand battery. if switching from Li-Ion to NiMH, the no-name product will be a bit heavier, but actually get better battery ageing than the high-end unit.

That's actually a symptom of my complaint. I've had a number of rechargeable-battery-powered screwdrivers. The one I bought in the late '80s is still useful, though I've had to replace the batteries from time to time. Just as one example, the one, from the same manufacturer, that I bought a couple of years ago when I couldn't find the old one because things were in a disarray while I was moving, is already on its last legs. The batteries in it can't be replaced. The newer one cost 50% more than the old one, yet the old one is still useful. People buy this stuff anyway. I, in the meantime, have purchased a more costly version, not from a mainstream U.S. manufacturer, simply because the U.S. manufacturers won't produce a good-quality item at all. They simply have 'em made elsewhere. That's true of cars, large appliances, and, of course, high-tech equipment.

In a society the ones with the money can't afford to produce themselves because the production costs will be to high. So production has to be moved to low-salary countries. To still get income, the market must switch from a production economy to intead produce/sell ideas. So keep the real high-tech stuff. Which obviously requires that everyone do get good education, because the low-salary countries will quickly be richer, get more universities, higher salaries and stop producing and instead start working with high-tech and ideas.

Now, there's another problem. Those developing countries seem to be supplying high-tech workers to the U.S. either in their nation of origin or here in the U.S. If the U.S. employers are willing to accept the education standards of developing nations, why, then, don't U.S. students wise up and get their educations in those countries where the education is inexpensive?

population has skills/knowledge at a level where they are competitive. US isn't working it its competitivenes but instead focusing on fighting in courts and killing companies while having the market starved because of patent portfolio companies just harvesting ideas without making efficient use of them - they just don't have the real knowledge about the areas the patents spans to really make good use of them. And their royalty fees are so stiff that the companies who do have the knowledge can't grow fast enough because of the fees.

The U.S. patent office has been very lax, essentially failing to examine the innovation and claims in patents they issue. They would probably issue a patent on the wheel if someone were foolish enough to file for it.

Next thing - outsourcing isn't done because the staff is too lazy or doesn't show up. It's because management have for along time found out that they can still get management salaries for being boss over nothing. Outsourcing the operation means they get money but don't have to make decisions. And when they don't have local staff, they lose the knowledge about what they have been outsourced. So they start to make really stupid decisions what to buy and from whom. Oops, big company loses because no one have the skills, and the outsourcing companies quickly notice that the ones buying the services don't have the skills. So they can maximize their winnings by reducing the quality without being caught. Until they really are caught - oops we outsourced our IT department to a company that didn't had a well-working backup solution. Too late. Business closed...

That's not the way I hear it from my acquaintances in the manufacturing industry. The overall cost picture is unfavorable for local employees because they can't easily be fired for incompetence or poor attendance/work habits. The cost of firing and hiring replacements is burdensome. People come to work to collect a paycheck and don't care about the long-term survival of their employer. Over time, of course, the relationship has deteriorated to one in which the employee is employed only so long as he produces profit. OTOH, the employee leaves with whatever he's learned if he gets a slightly "better" wage offer. I guess both employer and employee get what they deserve.

In the end, the failure is spelled greed. Greed from wanting too much royalties. Greed from wanting management bonuses/salaries without having a department to manage. Greed from wanting to maximize profits and taking advantage of customers who don't have the skills to evaluate the quality of the purchased products.

One thing to keep in mind is that "high-tech" stuff is always non-essential. If you have nothing at all, aside from a bit of money, and you're starting out, what's important? Is it a refrigerator, a stove, a dishwasher, or a TV, fancy phone, or a computer?

I recently bought a new stove for my kitchen. I couldn't find a good one from a mainstream U.S. manufacturer, so I bought a very expensive one made in Sweden, at about four times the cost of a typical mainstream U.S. brand. I didn't like the price, but I know I'd have disliked the lower quality much more.


List of 60 messages in thread
Finally we found what made US and Europe in crisis      JecksonS Ben      01/20/12 01:00      
   Really?      Jez Smith      01/20/12 14:22      
      Rice Crispies      Neil Kurzman      01/20/12 17:49      
         Yeah..      Jez Smith      01/21/12 01:37      
            Once I heard her say ...      Richard Erlacher      01/21/12 11:29      
               Gifted      Per Westermark      01/21/12 12:54      
               I have found someone worse      Jez Smith      01/22/12 15:17      
                  I don't know what this guy's "issue" is ...      Richard Erlacher      01/22/12 18:55      
                     Ouch      Per Westermark      01/22/12 20:43      
                        His Way...      Michael Karas      01/22/12 21:51      
                           That's not quite the case ...      Richard Erlacher      01/22/12 22:40      
                              works here      JecksonS Ben      01/23/12 07:35      
                     We have a solution      Jez Smith      01/24/12 14:04      
                        Glue?        Rob Klein      01/25/12 06:16      
                           re: Soylent Green      Andy Peters      01/25/12 15:43      
                        sorry! ... multi-post      Richard Erlacher      01/25/12 08:58      
                        Now, if they'd just apply that filter to politicians ...      Richard Erlacher      01/25/12 08:58      
                        Oops! ...      Richard Erlacher      01/25/12 08:58      
               I am a goon....      Jez Smith      01/29/12 11:48      
                  Maybe you could illustrate what you mean?      Richard Erlacher      01/29/12 12:42      
                     I don't know but      Jez Smith      01/29/12 15:05      
                        It's like entropy ...      Richard Erlacher      01/29/12 19:16      
                           The thing is...      Jez Smith      01/29/12 23:49      
                              I have to agree ... Americans are doing it to themselves      Richard Erlacher      01/30/12 08:39      
                           Simplifications        Per Westermark      01/30/12 03:57      
                              We'll just have to agree to disagree, I guess ...      Richard Erlacher      01/30/12 10:45      
                                 Still not a quality issue but a hunger for more        Per Westermark      01/30/12 11:30      
                                    live for life      Stefan KAnev      01/30/12 12:33      
                                       Perhaps someone will pay you to "live your life"      Richard Erlacher      01/31/12 19:49      
                                    Yes, and therein lies the fatal flaw      Richard Erlacher      01/31/12 20:16      
                                       just buy new one      Stefan KAnev      01/31/12 22:09      
                                          ISO9001/2000?        Erik Malund      02/01/12 06:56      
                                             agree      Stefan KAnev      02/01/12 07:13      
                                             No, depends on knowledge/experience of people implementing      Per Westermark      02/03/12 05:38      
                                                DO we need ISO?      JecksonS Ben      02/03/12 05:44      
                                          It's up to the buyer ...      Richard Erlacher      02/01/12 08:09      
                                             Still thinking price implies quality      Per Westermark      02/03/12 06:24      
                                       Wal-Mart TVs      Andy Peters      02/02/12 10:38      
                                          Yes, SONY, SAMSUNG, TOSHIBA, etc, all do it ...      Richard Erlacher      02/02/12 21:18      
                                          Foxconn...      JecksonS Ben      02/03/12 05:34      
                                             It's because of their scale      Richard Erlacher      02/03/12 10:02      
                                                Large scale      JecksonS Ben      02/05/12 04:00      
                                                   Quite so, but there's room for improvement      Richard Erlacher      02/05/12 09:46      
                                                      why You expect this?      Stefan KAnev      02/05/12 13:02      
                                                         Perhaps you're right      Richard Erlacher      02/05/12 18:53      
                                                            Already happening      Per Westermark      02/05/12 19:42      
                                                               they sleep      JecksonS Ben      02/06/12 01:44      
                                                                  I thought Indonesia was ahead of the PRC in wages ...      Richard Erlacher      02/06/12 08:52      
                                                                     The url blocked      JecksonS Ben      02/10/12 05:00      
                                                                  ^%$#@! Double post ... again! Sorry      Richard Erlacher      02/06/12 08:52      
                                                            PRC and US corruption      JecksonS Ben      02/06/12 01:35      
                                                               Maybe you could explain ...      Richard Erlacher      02/06/12 09:02      
                                                                  smooth criminals      JecksonS Ben      02/10/12 05:02      
                                                      at baby time....      JecksonS Ben      02/06/12 01:28      
            krispies      Andy Peters      01/24/12 10:18      
         As i see it..      Jez Smith      01/21/12 01:45      
      I'm wrong...      JecksonS Ben      01/21/12 08:18      
      SOPA/PIPA      Andy Peters      01/24/12 10:25      
         about that "freedom of speech" thing ...      Richard Erlacher      01/24/12 16:49      
   Brilliance      Joseph Hebert      01/24/12 05:30      

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