Knowledge integration is well explained by the human–organization–technology (HOT) approach known from knowledge management. This approach contains the horizontal and vertical interaction and communication between employees, human-to-machine, but also machine-to-machine. Different organizational structures and processes are supported with the help of appropriate technologies and suitable data processing and integration techniques. In a Smart Factory, manufacturing systems act largely autonomously on the basis of continuously collected data. The technical design concerns the networking of machines, their connectivity and the interaction between human and machine as well as machine-to-machine. Within a Smart Factory, machines can be considered as intelligent manufacturing systems. Such manufacturing systems can autonomously adapt to events through the ability to intelligently analyze data and act as adaptive manufacturing systems that consider changes in production, the supply chain and customer requirements. Inter-connected physical devices, sensors, actuators, and controllers form the building block of the Smart Factory, which is called the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT uses different data processing solutions, such as cloud computing, fog computing, or edge computing, to fuse and process data. This is accomplished in an integrated and cross-device manner.
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