How will the geospatial industry change in the Fourth Industrial Revolution?



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What is the Fourth Industrial Revolution?

You must wonder, what is the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) that we constantly keep hearing about? Everyone seems to be talking about it. Simply put, it is the disappearing of boundaries between the biological, physical and digital worlds. It is not something that is going to happen overnight, it is happening all around you, all the time, even as you read this blog. Self-driven cars are an excellent example that captures the essence of this revolution in the making. Using artificial intelligence and remote sensing, it has automated a completely manual activity (driving) and given us a glimpse of what the future beholds for us.

Data has already started replacing oil as one of the most valuable commodities in the world. This transition will only accelerate in the near future with geospatial data being one of the most sought after commodities by individuals and businesses alike.  

Geospatial industry and the 4IR

Geospatial industry will be the forerunner of this revolution, finding its way into each and every possible application. Artificial Intelligence, IoT and Big Data have been around for quite some time now, but geography, the science of our world is what ties them all together neatly to create synergies. Consider the geospatial industry to be the enabler of the technology that has been at our disposal for quite some time now.

What enables real time technologies is the ‘where’ aspect, that is precisely what geospatial data brings to the table. Geospatial data is everywhere!

The revolution will encompass the complete merger of the geospatial industry with cloud computing and the IT industry thus truly bringing out the power of this data. Real time location updates will be at our fingertips.

This will allow the geospatial industry to be embedded into every level of our civilization, creating smarter cities and faster technology.

In today’s world, we do see a handful of businesses embracing the geospatial industry and reaping the benefits as a result. Uber, Amazon and Google are some of the many big names that use this technology in day to day affairs to provide value to their customers. We are certain that by the time 4IR hits the world in full force, there would be a handful of companies that have NOT integrated with the geospatial industry. They would be the exception, not the rule.

While currently geospatial data might seem a bit overwhelming, we believe that it is heading in a direction that will allow easy access for everyone. We foresee a dramatic decentralization of the industry, for the people, by the people. The job of geospatial specialists will not be to decipher this data anymore, but rather to ensure that the general population can easily use it themselves.

We often talk about globalization in a sense that the entire world is easily accessible to every human being. But we should never underestimate the globalization of knowledge, where geospatial data in particular is at arm’s length for every individual.


The revolution has already begun. Slowly but surely we move towards this state that we have envisioned. Advancements continue to be made everyday in the geospatial space and organizations continue to realize its importance and turn it into a competitive advantage. Will you be the one to take a head start in this revolution or will you end up becoming the dinosaur of our time? The future is of your own making!

Here at Ellipsis Drive, we are a team of highly driven individuals that aim to pioneer in the ever changing landscape of the geospatial industry and society at large. Do you have spatial data worth sharing? With the world or with a very specific audience? Ellipsis Drive provides a simple plug and play drive solution to host and share your geospatial data effortlessly with anyone. From developers and data scientists, to GIS experts and non-technical professionals. Sign up for a trial with us to open up your spatial content and start your journey today! 

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