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Machine to machine! Internet of things! Internet of
everything! Industry 4.0! Smart manufacturing, Smart Planet…. Each day it seems
there is a new term being introduced adding to the potential and confusion
about shifts happening in the technology marketplace for industrial
manufactures. However, when you step back and consider what the buzz is about,
these are all different terms being used to describe the convergence of

  1. connected everything – equipment, machinery,
    tools, shop-floors, delivery trucks, railcars, parts, consumables and
    everything else you can conceive of
  2. the tsunami of data, events, and triggers these
    devices create, consume and act upon
  3. the increasing availability of cheap, memory
    based computing horsepower to analyze through tera even peta bytes of
    structured and unstructured data in milliseconds
  4. harnessing all of the above in cloud based
    computing architectures with ubiquitous access at very low TCO with mobile as
    the primary interaction medium for applications, workflows and business
    processes

Many of you are probably thinking to yourselves, what’s
really new here? Leading companies in industrial manufacturing have been at the
forefront of many of these trends for years. They have had mobile sales and
service people using laptops and ruggedized devices for equipment repair
management and generating highly engineered/configured product quotes and
orders in the field for at least a decade if not more. Many manufacturers have
also developed either in-house or with specialized partners, connectivity
solutions to remotely connect to their equipment in the field, providing
capabilities such are remote monitoring or condition based service capabilities
as highly differentiated and competitive offerings.

Thus you ask and rightly so, what is different this time?
The difference is that with the convergence of the trends mentioned above, and
with the maturity of technological capabilities now available, it is now
finally possible for the first time to have an enterprise grade platform that
can provide not only the connectivity to millions of devices but also an
integrated platform that can add business context to the data, events, triggers
being generated and consumed and provide a means by which to act upon this
information in an intelligent closed loop manner, connect to enterprise
processes in a seamless fashion, providing a platform to evolve and innovate
new business process and models, while optimizing current core processes.

Given years of IT investment that manufacturers have made in
their current systems, it is not an option for them to throw away the millions
invested both in technology and intellectual property embodied in current
systems. With the convergence of the trends above it is now possible to have
such a platform coexist with current systems interoperating seamlessly while
extending the reach of a manufacturer’s network to end customer and the end
partner, providing vast opportunities to rethink their businesses and add
exponential value.

We invite you to comment and provide feedback as to how you
see this revolution playing out in your organizations

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1 Comment

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  1. David Parrish

    140 views is pretty sweet Avi.  Nice job.  Providing my commentary to test out SCN “gamification.”  Still not sure how I feel about it.  Badge collecting is odd.

    (0) 

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