Welcome to the Next Industrial Revolution (IR 5.0)
You’ve heard of THE Industrial Revolution…you know, the one that helped us become what we are today as a culture and society. When we incorporated machinery to do work on an industrial scale, we saw massive progress throughout the globe.
Today we continue to revolutionize productivity at exponential rates. We’ve incorporated technology to take us to new levels as machines build things (production), computers automate the flow (automation), and we control the entire process from a computer screen (connection). This push to de-humanize the process over the past 100+ years has had its advantages as we’ve done more with less, maximized resources, and optimized outputs. At the same time, the limits to de-humanization were felt when the world shut down with the global pandemic. We recognized the need for a true INTEGRATION between PEOPLE and TECHNOLOGY…which leads us to an abrupt shift to IR 5.0.
Over time, we have undertaken at least 4 large-scale shifts that created a massive change in the way we work. Each subsequent “revolution” was shorter than the previous as we learned to incorporate new systems into production and enhance manufacturing.
The first IR started in the 1700s as the industry began making goods through large scale production followed by a mass-production economy exemplified by assembly lines. Automation crept in starting in the mid-1900s as we brought in the use of programmable controllers, robotics, and electronics. The past 25 years have focused on combining physical systems with cyber-controls using AI, predictive indicators, and the internet of things as tools to increase efficiencies.