Designing products and product families so they may be customized for the global marketplace and achieving these goals in abbreviated time period, while maintaining production efficiencies are the keys to successful manufacturing operations. The research on these areas has matured rapidly over the last decade. Today's highly competitive and volatile marketplace is reshaping the way many companies do business as rapid innovation and mass customization offer a new form of competitive advantage. In response, companies like Sony, Black and Decker, and Kodak have successfully implemented strategies to design and develop an entire family of products to satisfy a wide variety of customer requirements. Product Platform and Product Family Design: Methods and Applications discusses how product platform and product family design can be used successfully to: -increase variety within a product line, -shorten manufacturing lead times, - reduce overall costs within a product line. The material available here will serve as both a reference and a hands-on guide for practitioners involved in the design, planning and production of products. Included are real-life case studies that explain the benefits of platform based product development.

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