“Industry 4.0 developed with IoT, BigData, Artificial Intelligence”



Norio Murakami, President of Norio Murakami Office Co., Ltd., Former Vice President of Google Inc.

Norio Murakami (English)
Norio Murakami (Japanese)

Date & Venue

12:20-13:20 on Tuesday, 8th August 2017
Digital Multi-Purpose Hall, Tokyo Tech.


We can see the three words; IoT, BigData, and AI on newspapers almost every day. They say that new horizon of ICT pointed out with these three words is going to develop a huge revolution so-called “Industry 4.0”.

IoT is Internet of Things that means things are connected to internet and internet will be used for communication between human and things, among things, in addition to the current usage for the communication among human. The first group of things to be connected to internet is electrical equipment because of Smart Grid introduced by Obama administration eight years ago.

As IoT is going to be developed and the total number of things connected to grow, a new challenge so-called BigData to be analyzed will appear. There are several forecast of total number of things connected such as 1.8 billion at the end of 2018 and 50 billion in 2020. The final solution and method to respond the BigData challenge is said to be AI(Artificial Intelligence). AI as an important area of Computer Science started in 1956 at Dartmouth Conference and has been expected to solve problems in real world but failed in the past. The current boom that is counted as the 3rd one is finally expected to realize it. There are three reasons why we can expect it; 1) a breakthrough so-called Deep Learning has happened in the area of Machine Learning. 2) BigDate for each problem can be fed for machine to learn. 3) Computing Power become enough for calculation of Deep Learning algorithm.

Business world has started to aim at Industry 4.0 with IoT, BigData, and AI. “Hannover Declaration” Japan and Germany signed at CeBIT in March, this year is a symbolic event for such direction. USA also has started similar industry policy named “Industry Internet” that means the direction is an extension of the current computer based “Industry 3.0”.

Even with the difference of naming, the both industry policies aim at the world we can produce goods with competitive price in keeping with each consumer’s requirement. We tried “high-mix low-volume production” in the past but this time we will try to produce any unique good specialized for individual consumer with similar price for “single item high volume production”. This world might realize “Prosumer” that was predicted by a famous futurist Mr. Alvin Toffler in his book “The Third Wave” published in 1980. Prosumer is a new type of human who can be a producer and a consumer concurrently. Industry 4.0 is expected to provide opportunity for each consumer to give significant influence on the process of production of his/her good from design through delivery.