Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Intelligent Manufacturing

Factories getting carted away to Mexico was that "huge suction sound" Ross Perot heard way back in 1992. That image still persists. The Great Recession has made those fears much more concrete and real. Those jobs that are gone are gone. That seems to be the thinking.

There is no denying the rise in manufacturing in places like China. But then to say that is what caused the Great Recession is to let the wild cats of Wall Street slip. The Great Recession was caused by Wall Street bad behavior. When credit goes dry, factories close down.

There is this other school of thought that suggests, what if we lost those old factory jobs, we will replace those with clean tech jobs.
Billionaire and former U.S. presidential candi...Image via WikipediaThat thought has oomph. But that is not a complete thought.

Every industrial good that was manufactured in America over the past half century will survive in some form. A lot of that might get imported. But many of those might see new life if web tech intelligence can be added to the same. You want a world where every human being is connected to the internet. But you also want a world where all things - non human things - are also connected to the internet.

That intelligent manufacturing could be as robust a growth channel as clean tech. In short, the factories have to change with the times. Talk about intelligent design.

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