Here comes the third in­dus­trial rev­o­lu­tion

Enterprise - - World View -

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

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