Foundations Of The Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0)

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We have entered the dawn of the fourth industrial revolution (industry 4.0) which is different from previous revolutions in terms of speed, scale, complexity, and transformative power. The fourth industrial revolution can reshape healthcare, Government, business, education, and indeed every aspect of life. The fourth industrial revolution is fundamentally different from previous industrial revolutions. It is one step further from digitalization. Look around the whole world, it has already transformed the way we live, work, communicate, learn, and behave. And this transformation will continue remarkably.

What is the fourth industrial revolution?

The fourth industrial revolution is used interchangeably with industry 4.0 or 4IR. It’s a fusion of the internet technologies and future-oriented technologies that is blurring the lines between physical, digital, and biological worlds. Industry 4.0 can transform the way we live, work, communicate, interact, and learn. Why do we need industry 4.0?

We need industry 4.0 to convert the regular machines into self-learning or self-intelligent machines to improve their flexibility, productivity, performance, and overall efficiency. Industry 4.0 deals with a customer as a king and provides customer-centered products. Think of movies recommendation on Netflix, virtual assistants such as Google Assistant, the best route through Google maps, and how filters are applied on the face through Snap Chat.  The fourth industry revolution (industry 4.0) is helping us to make faster smart choices ever than before.

The Cyber-physical system (CPS) is the architecture for industry 4.0. Cyber-physical system together with the internet of things (IoT), cloud computing, and Big Data are the core technologies allowing the introduction of industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 future impact of the fourth industrial revolution

The fourth industrial revolution has the potential to completely reshape the whole world. Upcoming changes with the 4th industrial revolution are following. 

  • Industry 4.0 will Increase human productivity
  • It will completely transform the labor market by demanding new professional skills and by digitalizing jobs.
  • It will improve the quality of life and as result, it will have a great influence on society.

4IR technologies will create new jobs and replace existing jobs.

  • Industry 4.0 will transform the future of manufacturing.

What is the industrial revolution?

The period of major industrialization and innovation that took place from 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840 is known as the industrial revolution.

What are the four types of the industrial revolution?

The previous three industrial revolutions are the foundations of the fourth industrial revolution. Let’s go back to history and review how we have made progress in business and industry.

 No one has an exact idea when the industrial revolution was started but most of the resources stated that the first wave of the first industrial revolution started in 1760 with the invention of the steam engine. And this steam engine was used to power steamships, steamboats, and machines in factories. The second industrial revolution started from the late 1800s to the early 1900s, the big invention in the second industrial revolution was electricity and mass production. The third industrial revolution was started in 1960 and it was all about computers. The inventions of the third industrial revolution were transistors, microprocessors, automation, and robotics. And now the era of the fourth industrial revolution is started.

The element of change due to industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 is changing everything. Some changes which have made possible due to industry 4.0 are following.

The significance of velocity, scope, and impact:

What are the main characteristics of this era? According to Klaus Schwab, the defining characteristics of this era are “velocity, scope, and system impact”. Industry 4.0 is evolving at an exponential pace rather than a linear pace. The fourth industrial revolution has great scope because all-powerful and advanced technologies like Artificial intelligence, Blockchain, 3D printing, etc. are already fused in it. Industry 4.0 has an impact on everything. It has an impact on fashion, industries, health, government, business, and the labor market.

Everyone is getting connected

Everyone is getting connected through the 4th industrial revolution. Unlike the previous industrial revolutions, the invention of the 4th industrial revolution is a connection. Peoples are getting connected through social media. The world has become smaller due to the internet.

Exploring rapid digital transformation and the third wave

Digital transformation and the third wave are the core conditions for the fourth industrial revolution. The integration of digital technology in all areas of business is known as digital transformation. 4th industrial revolution is the digital transformation of manufacturing or production and interconnected industries and value creation processes.

The third wave is the business era when each and everything will be connected (wireless connectivity) to the internet. Third-wave will cause further disruptive digital information. It is already transforming our world including our transportation, health, business, homes, jobs, and money.

Rapid advances in different sciences due to industry 4.0

Countries and companies which will not adopt industry 4.0 will be left behind by their rivals. Due to industry 4.0 rapid progress is made in every field of science. Look at the hospitals, medicines they were never advance as they are now.

Economic and demographic shifts

Industry 4.0 has a great effect on the economy. It is generating new jobs as well as terminating previous jobs. Industry 4.0 has a crucial effect on society and causing unemployment in contrast to this it is producing new jobs with new professional skills. It has a potential impact on demographics and sifting manual work into automated work.

The Core Technologies

Core technologies behind industry 4.0 are the following.

Artificial Intelligence

The study of creating intelligent machines is called artificial intelligence. It has two subfields’ machine learning and deep learning. It enables machines to make decisions, learn, experience, and work efficiently instead of humans. Snap chat, self-driving cars, Google assistant have become possible due to artificial intelligence.

Internet of Things

Each and everything should be connected to the internet like a fan, Ac, refrigerator this is the concept behind the internet of things or IoT. Sensors sense data and send it to the microcontrollers and these microcontrollers decide according to the sensed data. Smart home security systems, smart factory equipment, biometric cybersecurity scanners, smartwatches, Alexa are the example of IoT. IoT generates millions of data every day.

Blockchain

Decentralized, distributed ledger that recorders the provenance of a digital asset is the concept behind blockchain. Sometimes Blockchain is interchangeably used with distributed ledger technology (DLT). It is based on P2P (peer to peer technology) technology, which allows data to be stored on hundreds and thousands of servers. The most renowned application of this technology is the cryptocurrency. A Blockchain contains different data sets, which are composed of blocks where a block comprises of different transactions. It is impossible to hack Blockchain this is the main advantage of this technology.

Autonomous Vehicles

A self-driving car is also known as an autonomous vehicle (AV). The autonomous vehicle can sense data from the environment and take decisions according to this data without human effort. It will minimize human accidents.

The Impact of the fourth industrial revolution

Industry 4.0 has an impact on society, education, business, supply chain, manufacturing, marketing, economy. Industry 4.0 has changed the way we used to live in past. Technology has altered the world so much which humankind has never experienced before.

This revolution has a great impact on everything

It’s 100% fact that industry 4.0 has a great impact on everything whether it is education or healthcare. We are on the brink of technology where everything has become possible. No one has imagined that the world would change in that way. This revolution has both impacts positive as well as negative.

The emergence of smarter cities

 The concept of a smart city is not fresh. Cities that use a bunch of technologies to improve quality of life, provide services, and solve city problems are known as smart cities. The main focus of a smart city is on people, how to provide quality life to the residents and visitors. Arguably the first smart city was Amsterdam. 

Industries at risk

The main risk of industry 4.0 is the shifting of the job. Unemployment will increase due to this technology. Machine learning and deep learning models are replacing the workers due to the conversion of manual work into automated work. New jobs will be created but for them, new skills will be required.

Ethics of Technology

Industry 4.0 will cause a lack of ethics and morals due to privacy concerns, data theft. Data privacy policies should be adopted nationally and internationally to overcome this problem.

Preparing and Responding to Change

Changes are going to happen due to industry 4.0. We should better prepare ourselves for the response to that change. Industry 4.0 focuses on customer-centered products and if we want to run our business successfully, we have to meet customer expectations. According to research, 57% of people have stopped buying things from a brand because they receive a better customer experience from their competitor brand. 

Taking action: organizations

Organizations should warmly hug industry 4.0 otherwise they will be left behind by their competitors nationally as well internationally. To adapt to industry 4.0 organizations should improve customer expectations and understand the needs of customers. Organizations should shift their infrastructure to new technology for better customer experience and of course, organizations need investment to do that.

Taking action: individually

We need to prepare ourselves for industry 4.0. As we know the world is overwhelmed by the invention of industry 4.0. This technology will cause unemployment. For better preparations, we should start investing to learn new skills and practicing them. Spend your time in selecting the right skill and start working on it.

Our choices and challenges ahead

 Industry 4.0 has no precedent. Identify the decisions which we need to make for industry 4.0 regarding climate change, unemployment, and manufacturing. There are so many challenges due to industry 4.0 we need to understand these challenges and respond according to them.

Conclusion

 Industry 4.0 has indeed transformed the world. It is also expected that this transformation will cause tremendous changes in health, education, and every sector of life in the future. The foundations of the fourth industrial revolution are the previous three industrial revolutions.  Due to industry 4.0 future manufacture will be more adaptive, flexible, and intelligent. This new trend of industry 4.0 will not only affect the manufacturing and economy industries but the whole education, health, and business sectors. Industry 4.0 has generated a tremendous amount of benefits in every field of life. Organizations and individuals need to prepare them for this innovative technology.