PCs are now used for all sorts of industrial and laboratory process
monitoring and control applications that used to require human attention. The
computers used for industrial work are are not normal desktops, they are high
reliability, usually rack mounted, versions of the PC.
Industrial control computers don't run Windows Having to reboot when your spreadsheet locks up is one thing, having to reboot a rolling mill is not something you really want to do very often, as it will probably cost tens of thousands of dollars per incident. Unix and specialty operating systems are the rule here.
Computers used in laboratory work are more likely to be the familiar desktop PC (Macs in some labs).
Automation Access works closely with an LIS (Laboratory Information Systems) software company to keep medical testing laboratories running in the LA area. These systems have a Unix host computer connected to a number of testing machines. The host computer also supports a number of terminals or PCs at which test reports and billing are handled.
There is a vast array of specialty products for monitoring and control from quite a few manufacturers, but most computer users are unlikely to be aware of any of them - this is a specialty market. If you can think of places where computerized monitoring and control would benefit your company, it is likely that there are plenty of products available for you to choose from.
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