Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
February 1, 201010:06 PM

The Next Industrial Revolution

What is the future of business?

In my book, Six Pixels of Separation, I recount a story about how much the world of business has changed and evolved in the past little while...

"On a recent trip to a speaking event, the driver was pointing out to me how the local area had once been a great industrial port where ships came to load and unload their stock and filled the whole north eastern part of North America with goods. The city was bustling, the local economy was swelling, and families were moving into the neighborhoods. He went on to say, however, that the shipping had slowed down in recent years to the point where that port was now empty because the demand was not there any-more. He felt it was a shame and a sad state of affairs for the world at large. I had one simple and lucid thought as I stared at the rusted cranes and dilapidated harbor area: We're still ship­ping tons of stuff, but we've shifted from crates and barrels into bits and bytes now. Yes, this creates change and, in this town's economy, real human distress. It's sad, very sad. But the pace of change continues to increase and all of us have to get much better at spotting these trends or, at the very least, doing our best to stay informed and connected. We also have to accept another very real concept: It's going to shift from bits and bytes into something else as well and we are not (and cannot be) prepared for that, either."

A wired world (or one that is quickly untethering from those wires) will look and be different.

The current cover story of Wired Magazine (February 2010) is mandatory reading. Written by the Chris Anderson (who is both the Editor of the magazine and author of two best-selling business books, The Long Tail and Free), the article is titled, The New Industrial Revolution, and looks at what could well be the future of business as we know it...

"Here's the history of two decades in one sentence: If the past 10 years have been about discovering post-institutional social models on the Web, then the next 10 years will be about applying them to the real world. This story is about the next 10 years. Transformative change happens when industries democratize, when they're ripped from the sole domain of companies, governments, and other institutions and handed over to regular folks. The Internet democratized publishing, broadcasting, and communications, and the consequence was a massive increase in the range of both participation and participants in everything digital -- the long tail of bits. Now the same is happening to manufacturing -- the long tail of things."

Yup, it's juicy, so stop reading this and head over to read this: Wired Magazine - The New Industrial Revolution.

It turns out that the revolution will be televised (and manufactured).

By Mitch Joel