The promise of the fourth industrial revolution

The technology behind the First Industrial Revolution was water and steam power, which mechanized textile production. The innovation made factories commonplace, which brought more people to cities and caused social upheaval. In the second, electric power made mass production possible. The third was based on semiconductors, which facilitated the data processing that automated production and spawned the digital age.

Now a fourth industrial revolution is taking shape. The technology behind it is the internet of things—networks of connected devices such as sensors, robots, and wearables. The data these devices produce across so many in-depth connections is the fuel for powerful

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