The Value of our Editorial Calendar

Each fall, we develop an editorial calendar that lists the types of stories we’ll pursue for the upcoming year. It’s worth bringing that to your attention. It’s also worth pointing out something new and exciting on our calendar for 2011.

Columns From: 10/14/2010 Modern Machine Shop, ,

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I appreciate the fact that this is a horizontal magazine. That is, we cover machining applications performed across a number of industries. I dig the variety and hope you do, too. This approach does require a measure of discipline on our part, though. We must make sure we don’t get into a rut covering the same general topics over and over again. That’s where our editorial calendar helps.

It’s possible that you’ve never heard of an editorial calendar, but all magazines have them. Their primary purpose is to ensure the inclusion of content that interests readers and advertisers. So on the one hand, they help machining equipment suppliers with the timing of their marketing efforts because the calendar shows precisely what we plan to cover each month. On the other hand, it’s a tool the editors use to ensure we’re covering the topics that we feel will help you, the reader, become more efficient and effective in today’s globally competitive environment.

In developing our calendar, we look for new technologies, machining trends and emerging markets to investigate. Consider the 2011 calendar that we’ve recently finalized. We’ll cover the extremes—large-part machining and micromachining. Both of these industry segments offer opportunities because they are more resistant to off-shoring (equipment geared toward big parts and small parts was prominent at IMTS this year). Aerospace and medical industries continue to be hot, so we’ll address machining for those segments, too. In addition, engineers continue to use more high-temp alloys in their designs, so we’ll focus on solutions for machining such exotic materials.

We’ll also be sure to cover staple machining topics throughout the year, such as the application of new cutting tools, CAM programming strategies, workholding techniques and fresh approaches to inspection. Plus, we’ll profile shops that are effective at using milling machines, turning centers, multitasking machines, Swiss-type lathes and grinding equipment.

However, there’s something else on the calendar that is particularly exciting. Next year, we’re conducting a benchmarking study to enable shops to measure their operation against similarly sized operations. The study, which will address machining facilities of all sizes, will identify optimal shopfloor practices as well as operational and business metrics that define world-class competitiveness in discrete parts manufacturing.

We’d love to have you participate in this program, so keep your eyes peeled for the online benchmarking survey that will go live in January.

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