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Choosing Remote-Collaboration Software

Hardware development requires more than general-purpose tools

3 min read
Choosing Remote-Collaboration Software
Illustration: Mark Allen Miller

Hardware development, like many engineering projects, is typically a group effort, with contributors increasingly working from home or across multiple buildings, organizations, states, countries, and continents rather than face-to-face. And as a new wave of hardware start-ups are finding out, coordinating those contributors often requires more sophisticated tools than just e-mail and phone calls.

Many general-purpose remote-collaboration platforms are currently available and in use by engineers, such as Dropbox for file sharing, Basecamp for project management, Google Docs for collaborative document sharing and editing, and WebEx for screen sharing. But the nature of engineering often requires more specialized systems, such as the Git platform, which is designed for managing changes to source code and documentation.

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Asad Madni and the Life-Saving Sensor

His pivot from defense helped a tiny tuning-fork prevent SUV rollovers and plane crashes

11 min read
Asad Madni and the Life-Saving Sensor

In 1992, Asad M. Madni sat at the helm of BEI Sensors and Controls, overseeing a product line that included a variety of sensor and inertial-navigation devices, but its customers were less varied—mainly, the aerospace and defense electronics industries.

And he had a problem.

The Cold War had ended, crashing the U.S. defense industry. And business wasn’t going to come back anytime soon. BEI needed to identify and capture new customers—and quickly.

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