"It may not qualify as a lightning-bolt eureka moment, but Jeffrey R. Immelt, chief executive of General Electric, recalls the June day in 2009 that got him thinking. He was speaking with G.E. scientists about new jet engines they were building, laden with sensors to generate a trove of data from every flight — but to what end?
That data could someday be as valuable as the machinery itself, if not more so. But G.E. couldn’t make use of it.
“We had to be more capable in software,” Mr. Immelt said he decided. Maybe G.E. — a maker of power turbines, jet engines, locomotives and medical-imaging equipment — needed to think of its competitors as Amazon and IBM."
They have a software center with 1,400 employees in San Ramon, Ca and are developing a new OS, Predix, designed to work with sensor data from machines.
"G.E.’s success or failure over the next decade, Mr. Immelt says, depends on this transformation. He calls it “probably the most important thing I’ve worked on in my career.”