Collaboration and Community: A Route to Results

A key driver of the Industrial Internet has to do with creating tools that enable "digital natives" to deliver a level of productivity far higher than the prior generation. We define digital natives as individuals that grew up with digital technology, and as a consequence are naturally adept at using it to do things differently (and more efficiently). I like illustrating this point with a personal story.

A couple of years back after a stint abroad, my family and I moved to Charlottesville, VA. On day two, my college bound daughter and I walked into a store where she got a smartphone -- the same one I had carried for a year. When we were leaving the story, I said, "Caterina, cool gadget, I guess your afternoon is about getting it updated with content." She replied, "Dad, while you were in the shop I used the phone to go on Facebook, sent a note saying I have a new device and need contact info and I already have everything I need."

The key ingredient of the story is that I use the same technology. I never considered this route to results. By using technology as a collaboration enabler, and by relying on the aggregate effort of her community (in this case her Facebook friends) to achieve her goal of having a populated smartphone, she got results an order of magnitude faster than I ever would.

In a world of constrained qualified resources we think the concept of collaboration and community will apply increasingly to how we build and support automation systems and are investing in tools to enable this, fully aware of the importance of doing it ways that are both safe and secure.

I welcome your perspective. What would make collaborative platforms appealing to you and your team?

Bernie Anger

A firm believer in group think, Bernie is a visionary in leveraging Cloud technology for manufacturing and industrial applications. Look for Bernie on Twitter @bernieanger and follow his tweets about Cloud and its impact on our Connected World.

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