Here comes the third industrial revolution
Intel has been spectacular at delivering speeds and feeds to the market more consistently over time than any other company. Dell destroyed Compaq, Microsoft left behind Apple’s version 1.0, and Oracle destroyed Sybase. On the aggregate, over the past three decades, companies with a strong engineering core competency created the most value.
This brings us to the apex of the third industrial revolution of science and technology. In other words, it can also be referred to as the post-modern era. A brief look at history reveals how the first industrial revolution brought together print and literacy with coal, steam and rail. While the second combined the telegraph and telephone with the internal combustion engine and oil, significantly, as part of the third revolution, what is being anticipated is the use of technology to distribute energy. With autonomy over energy and technology, the ability to create our own energy, store it and then distribute it to each other is opening up doors of an entirely new world.
Just like the digital media and internet, scientists foresee our buildings turning into power plants that will load renewable energy. With the help of technology, loading solar power from the sun, wind from turbines and ocean waves, the global power grid will become more intelligent and smarter. The ability to store and distribute this energy is what makes up the basis of the third industrial revolution. This is more of an economic game plan, whereas science and technology are assisting this transition. For instance, the EU has committed 8 billion Euros to hydrogen storage technologies. This is in order to fulfill people’s need for new energy storage technologies. Also, buildings are being considered as new power plants because they are the biggest source of CO2 emissions and they can be turned into a solution if they are converted into harnessing renewables to produce their own energy on site. An internet-like smart energy grid may extend this energy across nations and continents.
Thus, in the electronic future, with the outsourcing of technology and energy, there will be immense migration of jobs too. But the number of movable and immovable jobs is still under debate. Jobs in the service sector are more susceptible to outsourcing as compared to the manufacturing sector. As a result, employee wages and the relative increase in prices due to such major shifts are significant concerns of the industry. But presently, only assumptions can be made, as the real outsourcing scenario will be revealed in the next decade with further improvement in information technology and telecommunications.
It is also important to note that as part of core industrial activities, each sector of manufacturing, distribution and supply chain management has matured to a point of commoditization, where it is not sufficient for the engineers of today to come up with a new algorithm or a faster and cheaper architecture. Rather, the third Industrial Revolution demands soft skills that allow an industry to gather a million points of conflicting data and convert them into a clearly articulated solution. This can only be achieved by mastering the competency of customer understanding. Therefore, it is no more relevant to design a product running at 3.2 GHz instead of 2.8 GHz as it has become more relevant to produce lasting value using the human mind.
Experts pronounce the third industrial revolution as a bit more complicated, in which phrases like ‘ We need more scientists and engineers’ may become obsolete. Even with highly sophisticated technology patterns, human skills would be more valuable than computer skills