Even in business, smart is the new sexy. Literally everything is going to be smart in the future: smart homes, smart buildings, smart cities and smart factories. No doubt, there is a lot of hype involved. In addition, all of these trends are still at very early stages. It is unclear when the predicted benefits will become a reality, but many of them will. Especially the trend towards smart factories holds huge potential for innovation. To put it crudely: if even smart phones have such an impact on us, how could one overestimate the potential of smart factories.

Interestingly, representatives from the German industry together with the German government have coined a different term for smart factories: Industrie 4.0. The term Industrie 4.0 refers to a vision of a "fourth industrial revolution". This vision is about smart factories, which allow individual customer requirements to be met. This means that even one-off items can be manufactured profitably. For example, in a smart factory, dynamic business and engineering processes enable last-minute changes to production and deliver the ability to respond flexibly to disruptions and failures on behalf of suppliers. End-to-end transparency is provided over the manufacturing process, facilitating optimized decision-making. Read more

  • 2014 Strategic Road Map for IT/OT Alignment
  • Kristian Steenstrup | Partha Iyengar | John Mahoney
  • 24 December 2013
  • The transformation for most companies from a current state of isolated and disconnected IT and OT systems and environments to a fully integrated business will best take place in five stages. CIOs and IT leaders should look at this as a maturity model for progression to IT/OT integration.

About Blue Elephant Systems

  • Blue Elephant Systems GmbH is an international operating company, developing and implementing software to improve the IT operational safety. Large IT infrastructures can be controlled and monitored, analyzed and evaluated. The company's goal is to optimize the use of IT and to achieve the maximum operational reliability. The MIDAS Product Family optimizes and expands the usage of HP Operations Manager (HPOM), MIDAS boom automatically monitors heterogeneous IT infrastructures, and MOSCITO is a management information system for a company's managerial staff. Blue Elephant Systems GmbH is located in Stuttgart, Germany, and joined by Blue Elephant Systems Inc., based in Tuscaloosa, AL, U.S.A.