The perspective of impact is subjective; it is changing with time and is often influenced by something we call the “ecology-of-the-self” (the context in which decisions are made facing natural disasters, data hacks, climate change, bubbles in the economy, geopolitics, wars, and more)
We are surrounded by more smart things, more money, more people moving into the cities, and more capacity and more speed. Yet, in the eternal universal mechanism of equilibrium, wherever there is more, less is sure to appear as well. Less healthy food, fewer farming landscapes (and worse, less knowledge about farming), less serotonin, and weaker human bonds.
At the end of the day, the main impact of the industrial revolution was to develop industries and business models around the core building blocks that have always been essential to humanities survival. The building blocks are slowly dying.
The industrial revolution turned out to be not a revolution at all, but a more linear evolution. The further we move away from its baseline, the easier it has become to forget the delicate balance of its intended impact.
Today, technology and business models are giving us the potential to travel to other planets, build colonies on Mars, connect our brains to the internet, grow organs, extend or lifespan, play God and create intelligence. We want to automate every aspect of our lives and live in parallel universes, ones that are written in code.
We cannot continue to use resources to improve the past (for example, the industrial revolution 4.0) Furthermore, we must educate a new generation of leaders if we are to pave a path toward collaboration and establish new economic behaviors. A path that is not anchored in copying the past into code, but rather using code to rethink the narratives of efficiency and productivity for a better, more bountiful future.