The New Machine Age


I recently participated in a panel discussion at an MIT CIO Symposium and had the pleasure of hearing Andrew McAfee talk about the book he co-authored with Erik Brynjolfsson titled Race against the Machine. Mr. McAfee has talked at length about the digital revolution and its impact on the workforce. He talked about the dawn of a new machine age, where the focus is on idea production versus physical production, and knowledge work versus manual labor. He focused on the most impactful period in human history – the advent of the steam engine that ushered in the first industrial revolution. A lengthy period that followed the first machine age was transformative and disruptive. We are on the verge of something that history may someday view as more transformative and disruptive. A quote from Mr. McAfee summed up his thoughts:

Digital will make a mockery of everything that came before it”.

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