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April 18, 2019 Jeremy Boren

Transform 2019, P&G Innovates, versiondog at CERN

Early-bird Registration Opens for Transform 2019

We’re excited to announced that GrayMatter has opened early-bird registration for our annual user conference: Transform 2019!

GrayMatter is kicking off registration by announcing the first keynote speaker: John Baier of The J.M. Smucker Company.

John Baier, Senior Manager, IS Operations, J.M. Smucker Company

John leads a group that supports Smucker’s production facilities. He will highlight how his team takes a practical, pragmatic approach to harvesting value to align with initiative roadmaps and to support corporate investment in new technology.

Click the full agenda.

This year’s event will again be in Put-in-Bay, Ohio, July 30 – Aug. 1. It’s designed for end-user professionals in all verticals who are passionate about operational technology and transforming into digital, industrial operations.

Sign up here.

versiondog Backs Up CERN’s Large Hadron Collider

Data management system versiondog, a GrayMatter partner, is backing up the industrial systems that monitor and control the Large Hadron Collider at CERN near Geneva — the world’s largest particle accelerator.

The European Organization for Nuclear Research has used versiondog for about a year to manage the data of about 500 components, making versiondog one of CERN’s standard technologies.

Section of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN.

“We have made significant gains in certainty and quality when it comes to data availability in areas where many programmable logic controllers (PLCs) are in use. Implementing versiondog has put us on a new quality level,” says Jerónimo Ortolá Vidal, Automation Engineer at the Industrial Controls and Safety Systems Group at CERN.

The Large Hadron Collider was commissioned in 2008 to carry out cutting-edge research into particle physics.

versiondog from Auvesy provides a manufacturer-independent software solution for backup, version control, and documentation of project data for industrial control systems. It uses standardized workflow and centralized data storage, makes automatic backups and ensures comprehensible documentation of each step in the development process. The SmartCompare function enables detailed program comparison with the same presentation as the system editor. It supports audit trail documentation in accordance with ISO 900x, VDA 6.x, FDA 21 CFR 11, GAMP and GMP.

“We want to make all the processes of the control system and their surrounding ancillary equipment homogeneous,” Ortolá said. “Our goal is to always have a clear overview of all PLCs and HMIs and all the changes that are made to their control programs. We want to be able to manage all program versions using a standardized procedure, and it is extremely important to us to be able to store and safeguard data centrally.”

To learn more about implementing a version control solution, contact GrayMatter at 412-741-2410 or via our website at graymattersystems.com.


P&G Takes on Direct-to-Consumer Challenge by Innovating from Within


Leigh Radford, Vice President and General Manager, P&G Ventures, discusses in a Forbes story how Procter & Gamble has created a lean, start-up style organization within its own company.

Leigh said P&G’s former CEO encouraged her to develop P&G Ventures as a way to “incubate promising new businesses and new categories for the company.”

A few of the key insights Leigh offered for how she created P&G Ventures include:

  • Recruit senior employees with the skills to take smart risks and make decisions without too much oversight
  • Hire external expertise to augment the knowledge of the internal group
  • Be prepared to make decisions more quickly than the larger organization

While Dave Morgan indicated that P&G was being challenged by DTC brands, P&G Ventures appears to be addressing this by creating a division designed to both drive innovation and thrive in the DTC space. Perhaps this nearly 200-year-old company is more agile than some think.

Check out the full story here.

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Jeremy Boren

Jeremy is GrayMatter's Brand Manager and the author of TechHub and the emPOWERUP Podcast. He writes about digital solutions, trends and culture in the world of operational technology. Jeremy's background is in daily journalism. He has a passion for storytelling and enjoys highlighting the technologies and professionals taking on complex challenges in manufacturing, energy, cybersecurity and infrastructure.