Historical Patterns of Disruption
It's commonly said that we are now in a fourth industrial revolution. What does that mean? How will it affect us? Before answering question, we'll take a look at the previous industrial revolutions.
How did technology in each industrial revolution disrupt society and culture?
First Industrial Revolution
Late 18th Century - Mechanization
Second Industrial Revolution
Late 19th Century - Mass Production
Third Industrial Revolution
Late 20th Century - Digital Revolution
Fourth Industrial Revolution
Technology has changed by leaps and bounds since the first computer. While we can't say with certainty what'll exactly be next, there are a lot of promising disruptive technologies out there. Two of these are hyper-connectivity - the concept of having everything and everyone connected to the internet - and superintelligence - intelligence powered by technology through artificial intelligence and machine learning.
How will hyper-connectivity and superintelligence shape the next revolution?
Hyper-connectivity has many positive and negative implications. Here's some of each:
- Benefit: Readily accessible information everywhere. At the grocery store, unsure whether the store's ripping you off or not? Just check the prices at another store! Even better, do it all from the comfort of your home, and order everything to be delivered.
- Benefit: Communication and human "connectiveness". This is really part of the third industrial revolution, but the progress we've made since have only made this better.
- Cost: Disinformation. Only recently have people, businesses, and governments realized the power the internet wields. We're no longer in a "wild west" where the internet was simply a "universal information system"; Tom Scott explains this very well.