The Fourth Industrial Revolution Will Be Mind-Blowing, and it Has Started Already

In TechNative, Cliff Moyce, Head of the Finance Practice at DataArt, discusses the technologies behind the Fouth Industrial Revolution and its potential impact on businesses and humanity at large.

“The Fourth Industrial Revolution is not, as some have erroneously described it, simply an extension of the Third. The Third being the massive digital revolution that started in the middle of the twentieth century, which included the wholesale adoption of the internet as our main source of information, and the use of mobile applications (apps) for shopping, travel, banking etc. Though some elements of the Fourth Industrial Revolution have existed in isolation during the Third (eg Artificial Intelligence), it is their possible combination with other new technologies that will facilitate the mind-bending and almost infinite possibilities of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Those other technologies include nanotechnology; atomically precise engineering; conscious technology; a hyper-connected (and thus arguably conscious) internet of humanity; mixed reality living; synthetic biology; human augmentation; brain uploading; and the internet of everything.

The product of these combined and blurred domains will be ‘machines’ (which may be as much biological as technical) determining the possibilities and needs for other ‘machines’.

Take another example: The Internet of Things. This technology, which came to life at the tail end of the third industrial revolution, is mutating to play a key part in the fourth. How many individuals, businesses and even countries are prepared for a world where the internet of things is the internet of everything? The answer: none. When everything is connected, providing data in real time to everything else and linking into other technologies such as artificial intelligence, medical devices and driverless cars, the business models and new methods of doing things that will come out of this are legion and unpredictable.

The change that is coming is of such a scale that no one can really claim to anticipate, manage or even understand it… Change Management’ is a fallacy. Change of this magnitude can never really be managed.”

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