Thought for the month

“You aren’t learning anything when you’re talking.” Lyndon B. Johnson, US politician and 36th President (1908 – 73).

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Softwear

The US military need for stealth bombers and smart munitions I can understand but automated garment manufacturing? US agency DARPA has just awarded a contract with the stated goal of having complete production facilities that produce garments with zero direct labour. The $1.25 million funding is to create a beta unit at SoftWear Automation, Inc. to develop a numerically controlled sewing machine that tracks fabric movement by observing passing threads and under servo control moves the fabric under the needle stitch by stitch. But with an estimated annual military clothing budget estimated at $4 billion the potential savings from an automated sweatshop are real and probably avoid unpleasant human rights, poverty wage discussions.

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