Fourth Industrial Revolution — Graphic by Christoph Roser at AllAboutLean.com

Let me give you an absurd example of how innovation happens or is made possible

Nanotechnology is a breakthrough. 3D printing is a breakthrough. These two technologies are, or at least seem, very different. Original innovation is about bringing together, and/or inter-stacking, existing innovations and components to bring into being new or improved innovations.

A few examples of modern (4IR) Innovation:

Their newness/novelty is rooted in the stacking up of prior innovations:

(a). Smart refrigerators

Source — Wikipedia: The LG Internet Digital DIOS smart refrigerator. It provides information such as inside temperature, the freshness of stored foods, nutrition information and recipes. Other features include a webcam that is used as a scanner and tracks what is inside the refrigerator. In addition, the electricity consumption is half the level of conventional refrigerators.

(b). Virtual assistants

Source — Wikipedia: Amazon Alexa virtual assistant. It is capable of voice interaction, music playback, making to-do lists, setting alarms, streaming podcasts, playing audiobooks, and providing weather, traffic, sports, and other real-time information, such as news. Alexa can also control several smart devices using itself as a home automation system.

©. Cryptocurrencies

Source — Wikipedia: Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency; a form of electronic cash. It is a decentralized digital currency without a central bank or single administrator that can be sent from user to user on the peer-to-peer bitcoin network without the need for intermediaries. Transactions are verified by network nodes through cryptography and recorded in a public distributed ledger called a blockchain.

(d). Genetic testing

Source — Wikipedia: 23andMe offers DNA ancestry testing and other health diagnoses.

In closing

The examples above are a combination, and/or inter-combination, of existing innovations; some new and some old. The whole point is to achieve more up-to-date agility, use, effectiveness and efficiency.



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Tiisetso Maloma

Tiisetso Maloma

Author of The Anxious Entrepreneur + 3 books. Entrepreneur. Pattern Modeler. Created EBC Business Model. Huff Post contributor. Founder @startup_picnic