A five-step content strategy for Industry 4.0

Content is everywhere. It sits in your pocket or on the screen of your mobile phone. It pops up from a search when you want to find out what something is or how it works. It might already be part of your watch telling you that it's time to exercise. With the advent of Industry 4.0, it will find its way into your fridge, or even onto a nanochip underneath your skin.

Text by Marie Girard


A five-step content strategy for Industry 4.0

Image: Kirill Kedrinski/123rf.com

From books to molecular content

Where does technical content fit into this picture? Let’s go back in time and examine where technical content comes from. The story of mass content production started when the printed press made it possible to share scientific knowledge. Technical knowledge – that is, information about how to do something for a utilitarian purpose – remained tied to an oral tradition of apprenticeship until the industrial age. Mass industrialization created the need to transfer know-how quickly: Instruction manuals were born. Products came with a paper manual; the book was the unit of content.

Then came the Internet, and the possibility of publishing books online gave birth to PDFs. New ways of browsing and searching forced the book-like nature of PDFs to give way to a different information architecture: online Help. The first documentation standards appeared, based on ...