Chapter 5. Conclusion

The industrial internet is the expression of the Internet’s structure and practice in the parts of the physical world where it stands to have the greatest impact on “stuff that matters.” Like the Internet, it invites the wide participation of anyone who cares to contribute expertise or ingenuity in solving a modular problem and scaling it across the world.

A century and a half ago, the machines that our lives now depend on were being invented and refined in basement workshops (as well as a few prototypical corporate research operations). As machines improved, the costs and expertise needed to improve them further grew, and the age of garage foundries for big machines largely passed.

Software, with the industrial internet, stands to reinvigorate machine innovation. Every few years, the software industry is reshaped by dorm-room entrepreneurs; the industrial internet will bring some of their spirit to the physical world at the same time that it affirms the value of big machines.

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