Letters to the Editor

We are in the midst of third industrial revolution

Editor: There was a very interesting article in the April 21 issue of The Economist magazine. The article covered the first two industrial revolutions, and made the prediction that we are now entering a third industrial revolution that will have a major impact on world economies.

The first revolution started in Britain with the mechanization of the textile industry. Cloth was no longer made by hand. The second revolution started in the U.S. when Henry Ford invented the production line and ushered in the age of mass production.

Now a third revolution is underway.  The electronic digital assembly line will practically eliminate the production line as we know it and result in all labour being run by computers, from the processing of raw materials to the final production of finished articles. The need for specialized raw material will go up.

This will result in the elimination of the need to send raw materials to places such as China and the production of manufactured items at the place where they are needed. Cheap labour and shipping costs will gradually be reduced or eliminated. A lot of the world container traffic will no longer be required. China will manufacture to satisfy its own needs, as will most countries.

However, a well-educated and professional work force will be needed to get the production processes set up, and the West will start  setting this up on a world-wide basis. We must get ready for another round of world prosperity, led by the West.

Eric J. Bysouth,

Langley

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