A Fourth Industrial Revolution is unfolding as consumers and the tech industry alike watch with bated breath, Karen Kerr told a crowd of Techstars Kansas City attendees.
“Two things are happening,” Kerr, senior managing director with GE Ventures explained during a panel Thursday that explored the future of the robotics and manufacturing industries. “We’re able to capture more data … and cloud components are becoming critically important.”
As the two developments combine, artificial intelligence and machine learning will evolve the manufacturing space, Kerr said confidently. It sets the stage for a transformative moment that will alter the ways in which production and manufacturing facilities talk to each other, she said.
Kerr was joined on the panel by Phil DeSimone, co-founder of San-Francisco Carbon, who echoed her sentiments about the potential for rapid change.
“The technology is appreciating, it’s an appreciating asset. It’s constantly improving,” DeSimone said of Carbon’s value to clients hoping to modernize using the firm’s 3D printing tech.
Committed to the revolution, DeSimone has seen such companies as Adidas find new footing with the efficiencies of 3D printing –– a capability that’s been around for more than 30 years but that Carbon has greatly advanced, slashing production time from days and hours to an impressive matter of minutes –– he said in support of the science that powers robotic manufacturing.
Ever evolving, the latest industrial revolution will spark creativity in minds across the America heartland, Kerr said.
“This is where manufacturers are,” she exclaimed.
With dozens of clients spread from Kansas City to Cleveland, DeSimone agreed with Kerr’s assessment and argued that robotic expansion could drive economic growth when it eventually creates new jobs in Kansas City.