Drilling Software: Lost in Translation?

Literally, being lost in translation happens not only to travelers in foreign countries, but also in our daily lives, where essential meanings are dropped in communication; or in the software development process, in which the specifications might be compromised. That's why it's important to work with Professional Website Translation as such companies can guarantee the quality of their translation.

Drilling software, used by drilling professionals, is rarely developed by drilling engineers. The gap between eventual users and developers is inevitable. We can attempt to minimize it, but we cannot remove it completely, simply because two groups of people speak different languages.

While developers speak computer languages such as VB, C#, etc., drilling engineers speak an operation language. The communication is through meetings, specifications, testing, and so on. It is easier for developers to speak the field language and we have proved this.

One of the translation tools between these languages is visualization, especially 3D. It is hard enough for field engineers to explain what happens downhole. It is equally challenging for developers to express the computer simulated numbers in a meaningful yet easy-to-understand format. The following graph is one of our approaches to show the buckling of a pipe in a well.

Pipe buckling

Quite a few years ago, I visited Japan with a delegate of casing running and cementing experts from Unocal. The Japanese are known for their beautifully arranged dishes, such as bento. But what (pleasantly) surprised me was that the plastic models of dishes or noodle bowls were so real. They could easily fool our eyes. These models were mostly handmade and custom-tailored for restaurants.

Their idea is to really get you interested in the dishes. Dish pictures in the menu help non-Japanese speakers order. Dish models displayed in the restaurant ultimately translate the entire description to a vivid virtual order so that ordering food is as effortless as possible.

Back to our title. 3D visualization is a great help in translating computer language to field language. But if you really want to conquer the world, we have the drilling software (with 5 languages: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese and Russian) to enable you to do so.

Multi-language drilling software

Drilling Software: Get More Done by Doing Less

More than a century ago, Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto noted the consistently lopsided relationship between inputs and outputs called “The 80/20 Principle”, which asserts that a small portion of inputs or efforts leads to a big portion of outputs or results. In 2008, self-confessed “lazy entrepreneur” Richard Koch explained this principle in great details in his best-seller book “The 80/20 Principle”.

Basically, if 2 sets of data, relating to causes and results are examined, the most likely result is that there will be a pattern of imbalance. The imbalance may be 65/35, 70/30, 80/20 or 95/5, or any set of portions in between. However, rarely 50% of inputs will account for 50% of outputs.

80/20 principleWhether we realize it or not, the principle applies to our work, social life, and personal matters.

In our personal life, 20% of our clothes will be worn 80% of the time. 20% of our carpet areas are likely to get 80% of the wear. If you have an alarm system, 80% of the false alarms will be set off by only 20% of the possible causes.

In society, 20% of motorists cause 80% of all accidents. 80% of the value of our relationships is derived from 20% of close relationships.

In business, 20% of products or customers are responsible for 80% of a company’s revenue. 80% of wealth increase in portfolios comes from fewer than 20% of the investments. In a study of the revenues and lifespan of 300 movies released over an 18-month period, they found 4 movies (1.3% of the total) earned 80% of box office revenue – a clear example of the rule of imbalance.

Similar analysis could be done to study our time allocation of our drilling engineers/managers. It will probably show the similar imbalance. Achievements should probably not be “99% perspiration and 1% inspiration”. Instead, they may come from the 20% of our work.

The key terms in the equation of imbalance may vary from person to person. But from our drilling engineers’ perspective, taking the advantage of drilling software is one of the ways to improve our efficiency, because we then can spend more time in analyzing/identifying potential problems, rather than doing the tedious calculation.

As a software vendor, majority of our time is spent on R&D and software development, so that our clients do not have to spend big chuck of their valuable time making spreadsheet calculation. This is a derivative of the 80/20 principle: if you are not many times better than others in certain areas, outsource the tasks.

Drilling software does not replace drilling engineering. It amplifies drilling engineers’ skills so that we can get more done by doing less.