The Fourth Industrial Revolution and what it has in store
The Fourth Industrial Revolution
We have been hearing all this chatter about The Forth Industrial Revolution and how it will radically affect our lives, the way we do business and how we deliver value to the customer. We need to know and understand what affect it has on kasipreneurs and uMama wase next door (the neighbour), so we can build a service or product that can elevate that pain.
When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace. Moreover, it is disrupting almost every industry in every country. And the breadth and depth of these changes herald the transformation of entire systems of production, management, and governance.
The First Industrial Revolution used water and steam power to mechanize production. The Second used electric power to create mass production. The Third used electronics and information technology to automate production. Now a Fourth Industrial Revolution is building on the Third, the digital revolution that has been occurring since the middle of the last century. It is characterized by a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres.
The possibilities of billions of people connected by mobile devices, with unprecedented processing power, storage capacity, and access to knowledge, are unlimited. And these possibilities will be multiplied by emerging technology breakthroughs in fields such as artificial intelligence, robotics, the Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles, 3-D printing, nanotechnology, biotechnology, materials science, energy storage, and quantum computing.
As the Fourth Industrial Revolution unfolds, what innovations are in store?
- Advances in computing power, artificial intelligence, robotics, and material science can accelerate the shift toward more environmentally friendly products of all kinds. Digital fabrication techniques, including 3D printing, can bring manufacturing closer to customers and make spare-part maintenance easier and cheaper.
- Breakthroughs in biotechnology can allow replacement bones and transplantable organs to be grown from 3D printed patient’s stem cells. As discoveries unfold about human brain functions, we can look toward neural implants and brain-machine interfaces that address cognitive diseases and potentially enhance human intelligence.
- New energy technologies can create low-cost, plentiful, and sustainable sources of power and power storage to wean the planet off first-industrial-revolution fossil fuels. Robots can handle household chores, assist nurses, and even build themselves.
More advancements are being made in all fields and industries every day and having a sense of what’s to come seems beneficial, all we can do is to embrace change.