Industrial revolutions are momentous events. By most reckonings, there have been only three. The first was triggered in the 1700s by the commercial steam engine and the mechanical loom. The harnessing of electricity and mass production sparked the second, around the start of the 20th century. The computer set the third in motion after World War II.
Henning Kagermann, the head of the German National Academy of Science and Engineering (Acatech), did exactly that in 2011, when he used the term Industrie 4.0 to describe a proposed government-sponsored industrial initiative.
The term Industry 4.0 refers to the combination of several major innovations in digital technology
These technologies include advanced robotics and artificial intelligence; sophisticated sensors; cloud computing; the Internet of Things; data capture and analytics; digital fabrication (including 3D printing); software-as-a-service and other new marketing models; smartphones and other mobile devices; platforms that use algorithms to direct motor vehicles (including navigation tools, ride-sharing apps, delivery and ride services, and autonomous vehicles); and the embedding of all these elements in an interoperable global value chain, shared by many companies from many countries.
Companies that embrace Industry 4.0 are beginning to track everything they produce from cradle to grave, sending out upgrades for complex products after they are sold (in the same way that software has come to be updated). These companies are learning mass customization: the ability to make products in batches of one as inexpensively as they could make a mass-produced product in the 20th century, while fully tailoring the product to the specifications of the purchaser
Three aspects of digitization form the heart of an Industry 4.0 approach.
• The full digitization of a company’s operations
• The redesign of products and services
• Closer interaction with customers
Making Industry 4.0 work requires major shifts in organizational practices and structures. These shifts include new forms of IT architecture and data management, new approaches to regulatory and tax compliance, new organizational structures, and — most importantly — a new digitally oriented culture, which must embrace data analytics as a core enterprise capability.
Klaus Schwab put it in his recent book The Fourth Industrial Revolution (World Economic Forum, 2016), “Contrary to the previous industrial revolutions, this one is evolving at an exponential rather than linear pace.… It is not only changing the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of doing things, but also ‘who’ we are.”
This great integrating force is gaining strength at a time of political fragmentation — when many governments are considering making international trade more difficult. It may indeed become harder to move people and products across some national borders. But Industry 4.0 could overcome those barriers by enabling companies to transfer just their intellectual property, including their software, while letting each nation maintain its own manufacturing networks.
more on the Internet of Things in this IMS blog http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=internet+of+things
Microsoft Azure/ˈæʒər/ is a cloud computing platform and infrastructure, created by Microsoft, for building, deploying and managing applications and services through a global network of Microsoft-managed and Microsoft partner hosted datacenters. It provides both PaaS and IaaS services and supports many different programming languages, tools and frameworks, including both Microsoft-specific and third-party software and systems. Azure was announced in October 2008 and released on 1 February 2010 as Windows Azure, before being renamed to Microsoft Azure on 25 March 2014.
The advent of the CLOUD and the industry and our personal orientation to save pictures, videos and other data “out” in the “cloud” makes us think less of hard drives and other storage devices. However…