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Digital Video Information Network Crew Member
Digital Video Info Network
and Forum Crew Member

My Job

From Monday through Friday (but never on Saturday - click here to see why) I work as a certified elecronics technician at Mitsubishi Digital Electronics in Braselton, Georgia. The industrial plant located just off Interstate 85, about 50 miles North-East of Atlanta is housing several departments of Mitsubishi, among others the Product Center where I am working on those large projection television sets. This used to be the main facility, but we are not manufacturing any TV here anymore - following the general trend, the factory moved to Mexico in 1997. To see all the products my company is currently manufacturing, please go here.

My job is related to my main hobby, or I should say vice-versa, my hobby is closely related to my job. Either way, my interest for technology is as old as I can go back in my own history... I started by connecting a battery to a bulb, continued playing with simple radio receivers (composed of nothing more than a long wire antenna, a variable capacitor for tuning, a diode for demodulating, plus a pair of headphones as speakers) and ended up going to an electronics trade school where I learned to repair the consumer electronics products available at that time in Romania: mostly record players, tape recorders, cassette (stereos I am tempted to say, but truth is I started on monophonic units), radio receivers. Later I learned on my own black and white TV technology, then progressed to direct view color TV and finally to projection television.

So what am I exactly doing at Mitsubishi?

I am working at the Product Center of Mitsubishi Digital Electronics America (MDEA, the division that manufactures big screen televisions for consumers). Because of the size of our products, it's better for both the owner and the technician to fix these units in the owner's home, by replacing the circuit boards instead of trying to repair component level. The parts department sells these boards and charges a "core charge" varying between 50 and 250 dollars depending on the value of the board, in addition to the price of the board - servicers are required to return the defective board in order to be credited for the core charge. So the boards come back to us and we remanufacture them, test them, and align them to original specifications. This is the main part of my job, in addition we sometimes work on finished product as well.

As you probably know, Mitsubishi is a big company originating in Japan. It is present in some 25 industries ranging from mining and naval transportation all the way to electronics. Perhaps the best known products are Mitsubishi cars, but you can find the Three Diamond logo on many other products. Mitsubishi Digital Electronics is a division of Mitsubishi Electric, and this brings up another subject: the benefits I get working for this company. Because Mitsubishi Electric is a General Motors partner manufacturing electrical parts for GM cars, we can buy any GM vehicle at a discounted price, and i already did that: I bought a brand new Chevrolet Tahoe sport utility vehicle with a generous 15% discount.

A Short History of Mitsubishi (if you prefer, you can read all this here)

The first Mitsubishi company was a shipping firm that Yataro Iwasaki established in 1870. That company soon diversified into coal mining, shipbuilding, banking, insurance, warehousing, and trade. Later diversification carried the organization into such sectors as paper, steel, glass, electrical equipment, aircraft, oil, and real estate. As Mitsubishi built a broadly based conglomerate, it played a central role in the modernization of Japanese industry.

Mitsubishi split itself into independent companies in 1946 under the postwar government policy of decentralizing industry. The newly independent companies used their accumulated technology and other strengths to pursue growth under separate business models. They always would share a proud history, and they would continue to benefit from Mitsubishi's founding management philosophy. As independent corporations, the Mitsubishi companies cooperated in some ventures, as in petrochemicals and nuclear power, and competed with each other in other sectors. That pattern of cooperation and competition stimulated sound and vigorous growth for all the companies.

Mitsubishi Today

Today, Mitsubishi companies are Japan's industry leaders in several sectors, including marine transport, aircraft manufacturing, shipbuilding, nuclear power engineering, waste treatment plants, satellites, defense contracting, glass, petrochemicals, oil products, beer, property and casualty insurance, and warehousing, among others. The companies also are traditional leaders in philanthropic support for technological, educational, cultural, and social causes through foundations and direct funding. The independence of the Mitsubishicompanies makes the "Mitsubishi Group" all but impossible to define meaningfully. A convenient definition is the membership of the Mitsubishi Kinyokai, or Friday Club. That group comprises presidents and chairmen of 29 Mitsubishi companies. They meet informally for lunch on the second Friday of each month. A broader definition is the membership of the Mitsubishi Public Affairs Committe. That organization has 45 members, including several subsidiaries of Kinyokai companies.