Winter 2016

Welcome to the winter issue of X-OLOGY Magazine. We’re happy to announce that X-OLOGY is now in its 10th year, a major milestone for a niche publication and one our entire team is very proud of. From the start, our goal has been to focus on the innovative technology companies, people and resources in Michigan and, specifically, in the Southeast Michigan region. The emerging sectors we began covering 10 years ago are now fully developed industries that have brought the region back from its economic slump. Today, Southeast Michigan has a reputation for tech innovation, thriving companies and top talent. And this trend continues as STEM education initiatives move higher on the list of priorities for leaders in business and education.

As we celebrate a decade in print, this issue of X-OLOGY Magazine takes a look at Automation Alley and the role it is playing in expanding robotics and manufacturing technology throughout Southeast Michigan. Automation Alley’s Technology Center was created to promote innovation, share knowledge and inspire the STEM workers of tomorrow. Writer Ilene Wolff speaks with the center’s director, Alex Violassi, about the area businesses involved in the Technology Center that offer insight into advanced manufacturing technologies and more.  

Our People Profile introduces Rebecca Taylor, senior vice president of the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS), headquarted in Ann Arbor, MI. As a leader of the organization, which represents all sectors of the manufacturing base — aerospace, automotive, energy consumer products and medical, among others — Taylor emphasizes the need to continue to evolve to stay on the cutting edge of innovation in manufacturing.

One company that has learned to grow and change to maintain its competitive edge is Pratt & Miller, featured in our Business Profile. The company has embraced the latest in advanced manufacturing techniques, including work with robotics to incorporate automation into its manufacturing environment.  

On another note, if you’ve always had the urge to fly your own airplane, you’ll be interested in our Tech+Design feature, which highlights the ICON A5. This two-person Light Sport Aircraft is described as “simple and safe enough that anyone can learn to fly it.” A $2,000 deposit will get your name on the waiting list.

For our readers who would rather stay inside this winter with their feet on the ground, our Lifestyle feature presents culinary programs that will have you cooking with the pros. You’ll read about a variety of cooking venues that offer classes ranging from Mediterranean style dishes to bacon and bourbon concoctions, sweet treats and more.  

The X-OLOGY team wishes you a Happy New Year. We look forward to your input and ideas for 2016.


Jane Racey Gleeson