Digital Photonic Production and Industrie 4.0 - what it means for education and research?

Creation of the artwork "Future Skills"

According to the Global Challenge Insight Report "The Future of Jobs" published by the World Economic Forum in January 2016, by 2020, employees will need around a third of completely new skills in order to keep up with their job. Digitization in particular is making its way into all industrial sectors. In the manufacturing industry, this opens up new perspectives - both with regard to innovative products and services and with regard to new sales markets and more efficient processes. Laser-supported manufacturing also contributes to the systematic further development of Industrie 4.0 concepts through networking with the virtual world of the Internet.

Laser-assisted 3D printing processes not only enable the production of individualized and complex components at reasonable costs, but also leads to new business concepts, such as virtual spare parts warehouses. These developments are accompanied by a change in the demands placed on those people who develop these processes and systems in science and industry and implement them in companies. They initiate corresponding organizational changes, initiate new ways of thinking and adapt working environments and processes.

In September 2018, the Stifterverband and McKinsey published a discussion paper entitled "Future Skills: What skills are missing in Germany". The focus of "Future Skills" is on those competencies that will become significantly more important for professional life or social participation over the next five years. These include the design of transformative technologies like artificial intelligence and smart hardware as well as digital and non-digital key qualifications such as digital interaction and adaptability.

During the symposium "Digital Photonic Production and Industrie 4.0 - what it means for education and research", media designer Prof. Dr. Christof Breidenich artistically implemented these new skills and requirements of the future with the artwork "Future Skills". The first tableau on the 9.6 m x 3 m large canvas visualizes the human being in the environment of digitization.

In a second artistic phase, the picture is painted over. Here, the artist creates 5 motifs that take up selected aspects of "Future Skills". The 5 motifs are based on sports disciplines that are part of the Summer Olympics. Each motif has caricatural characteristics and visualizes a characteristic future competence. These include problem solving skills, complexity management and digital adaptability. The 5 motifs are depicted in the colors of the Olympic rings: a symbol of competition between well-trained athletes or at the meta-level between companies for well-trained junior staff.

At the end of Prof. Dr. Christof Breidenich's creative process, the artwork is dissolved into 400 pixel images. The viewers of the art action became part of a virtual Future Skill community with the numbered and signed individual pixels.

The videoclip will give you a lasting impression of the whole artwork and its creation.