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Digital transformation – it’s up to each individual

Internet of Things - Digitalisierung

„Everything that is simpler will come“


T his is one of the main drivers of digital transformation. It is not an invisible power or even the industry that is driving us towards digitalization, but it is every individual who wants to make his or her life a little more comfortable. So the driver of digitization is all of us who conveniently order a product via smartphone APP and expect it to be delivered the next day. It is every individual who no longer wants to do without the individual equipment of his vehicle and for whom it goes without saying to navigate online via Google Maps.

This connection is important because I often find that people are afraid that the terms digitalisation, industry 4.0, artificial intelligence or blockchain will change something that they cannot influence. Many don’t even see the benefits and opportunities that they themselves are using, but are afraid of job destruction, digital overload or even self-creating intelligent robots that oppress humanity. Digital technologies are only a means to an end to satisfy the needs of people (= customers). Everything else are consequences, which we accept by the employment of these means and technologies.

Inexpensive products, which are individually delivered to your home by post, cannot be represented with purely analog production systems. A heating system that saves energy at the limits of physical feasibility is not possible without a data-driven control system. And a bank that saves its customers the trip to the branch for transfers is also dependent on digital technologies. We consumers find this pleasant and accept in many places that companies receive the corresponding data from us for such amenities.

Since the beginning of the transition of our society, we have been striving for more in order to further improve our life situation. First it was the machining of fields, later the industrial assembly line production. Historically, this has led to more and more consumption and new challenges on the supplier side to produce more. Industry 4.0 is the current answer, thanks to structured data analysis and communication of production machines, to make the production of goods so flexible that in the end we produce individual products at costs that were previously only possible with mass-produced goods. Data is the medium through which the information between customer needs and production order is brought together.

Finally, a digital society must answer the question of how it wants to use human abilities (especially creativity, social bonding) with technological skills (e.g. artificial intelligence, robotics) in order to derive maximum benefit from the co-existence of man and machine. After all, it is every individual who defines his benefit and should act accordingly.

If a new social model suggests that we should change something, I recommend starting this development quickly. Because it is still the knowledge that counts:

The speed of change is higher today than it used to be and will never be as slow as it is now“.