Industry Today Volume 21 Issue 5

his piece is an excerpt from the August 2018 report, “The Rise of the Internet of Goods: ANew Perspective on the Digital Future for Manufacturers,” pro- duced by the MAPI Foundation in association with the Progressive Policy Institute For all of the catchphrases about Industry 4.0 and the fourth industrial revolution, the truth is that digitizing manufacturing is a long and difficult slog. The issue is that engineers in manufacturing and other physical industries have to manipulate and fit together real-world materials in ways that are consistent with the laws of nature and the limitations of current technology. Software developers in digital industries like entertainment and finance—where the final product is reduced to bits and bytes—have a much easier time. Consider, for example, Tony Stark’s iconic Iron Man armor from the Ecommerce fulfillment networks and online manufacturing platforms will support the growth of local factories making customized products T INDUSTRY TODAY 17 MANUFACTURERS ALLIANCE FOR PRODUCTIVITY AND INNOVATION T OF GOODS