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Can automatically authored videos of industrial operators help other operators to learn procedural tasks? This question is relevant to the advent of the industrial internet of things (IIoT) and Industry 4.0, where smart machines can help human operators rather than replacing them in order to benefit from the best of humans and machines. This study considers an industrial ecosystem where procedural knowledge (PK) is quickly and effectively transferred from one operator to another. Assembly tasks are procedural in nature and present a certain complexity that still does not allow machines and their sensors to capture all the details of the operations. Especially if the assembly operation is adaptive and not fixed in terms of assembly sequence plan. In order to help the operators, videos of other operators executing the complex procedural tasks can be automatically recorded and authored from machines. This study shows by means of statistical design and analysis of experiments that expert aid can reduce the assembly time of an untrained operator, whereas automatically authored video aids can transfer PK but producing an opposite effect on the assembly time. Therefore, hybrid training methods are still necessary and trade-offs have to be considered. Managerial insights from the results suggest an unneglectable impact of the choice to digitise industrial operations too early. The experimental studies presented can act as guidelines for the correct statistical testing of innovative solutions in industry.


de Giorgio, Andrea;  Roci, Malvina;  Maffei, Antonio;  Jocevski, Milan;  Onori, Mauro;  Wang, Lihui

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