Daily Inspiration; Manufacturing & Robotics – “Build on the big opportunities, not just the hot trends!”


“Build on the big opportunities, not just the hot trends!” – Futurist Jim Carroll

Let’s talk about robots!

Because if you are at all involved in the world of manufacturing and are thinking about AI, that’s where your head really needs to be. That’s the subtle undertone of my interview over at the ABB “Factories of the Future – The Robot Podcast” which you can listen to and download here. It’s available on all streaming platforms.

In the podcast, I’m making the point that much of what is going on with AI in manufacturing has everything to do with robotics, digital twin technologies, reinventing process, and other major trends, and very little to do with ChatGPT and today’s other shiny new toys. Taking a section from the broadcast, I explain that much of what is going on has to do with the very nature of the change occurring with the design and manufacturing process:

There is a process of what I call iterative design.

It used to be, we would have to commit to a product design, we would have to put in place the process methodology and we would pump out a million products that we’re all the same, but with iterative design, I think what we’re discovering is we can conceive the product, we can do rapid product conception using 3D printing and digital twin technology; we can now conceive it, we can commit to a manufacturing run and then if we get some customer feedback or we get some other insight into how well the product is working, we can change the design.

We can make it something that is iterative, where the design process keeps building upon itself. We keep re­designing it, and we keep re­designing the product as a result of that. So digital twin technology, 3D printing, fast set up, agility flexibility, advanced robotics, all those things are coming together to permit us to do that type of thing.

That’s the type of ‘big future‘ transformation that is underway in the world of manufacturing, and it goes far beyond today’s focus on generative AI. If you want to get your head out of the sands and into the assembly line, head over to the AI in Manufacturing Megatrends summary – it’s at https://ai-manufacturing.jimcarroll.com

The key line?

The sector long ago realized that machine vision, robotics, data analysis, predictive diagnostics, and more, combined with AI, provide a powerful path into the future.

Consider the top-line number in that post:

The global market for Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Manufacturing estimated at US$6.7 Billion in the year 2022, is projected to reach a revised size of US$181.2 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 51.1% over the period 2022-2030. Machine Learning, one of the segments analyzed in the report, is projected to record 56.6% CAGR and reach US$97 bBillion by the end of the analysis period. Taking into account the ongoing post pandemic recovery, growth in the Natural Language Processing segment is readjusted to a revised 47.4% CAGR for the next 8-year period.

Global Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Manufacturing Market to Reach $181.2 Billion by 2030
1 April 2023, MarketResearch.com

That’s a lot of other trends unfolding that you might not be focusing on. The interesting thing is that this is happening in virtually every other industry – that’s why you need to be thinking about the AI megatrends, not the hot trends. So far I’ve done a deep analysis of not just manufacturing, but healthcare, agriculture, construction, insurance, and energy. There’s lots more yet to come.

That;’s not to say there aren’t opportunities with today’s hot new trends; at the same time I’m digging into the megatrends, I’m implementing and working with today’s ‘hot stuff.’ When I was interviewed for the ABB podcast, I made sure to do a local recording in my virtual broadcast studio. I realized that there is a lot of good, concise insight here, some of which didn’t make it into the podcast. With that in mind, I decided to build it into a little interview show; in this. case, I’m interviewed by an AI Avatar who I have chosen to name Anders, in honor of the Swedish roots of ABB, a global powerhouse in the robotics industry.

Anders is also the name of a long-time friend of mine in Stockholm; I’ve always referred to him as my personal Viking friend. I thought he would get a kick out of this.

Suffice it to say, when it comes to the world of manufacturing, we are busy manufacturing massive BIG opportunities for AI!


THE FUTURE BELONGS TO THOSE WHO ARE FAST features the best of the insight from Jim Carroll’s blog, in which he
covers issues related to creativity, innovation and future trends.