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You touch or approach a topic dear to my heart: Cargo Cult Manufacturing. As you know, cargo cults are symptoms of cultural mismatches, where one group misunderstands another and goes through the motions of an endeavor, hoping to get useful results. In manufacturing, it's the business of making something that LOOKS right, but doesn't work right.

For example, my wife recently bought a new toaster, made in China as they all are nowadays. The damn thing burns one edge of the bread and leaves the other one cold: It looks like a toaster, but isn't.

My theory is that the Chinese don't eat toast, so they have no idea how a toaster is supposed to work, so they just make these metal boxes that look like toasters. It's Cargo Cult Manufacturing.

by asdf on Tue Mar 10th, 2009 at 10:26:21 AM EST

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