A paradigm shift, identified and coined by American physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn, is a fundamental change in the approach, concepts, and assumptions of a practice. While Kuhn’s observations and work were focused on the experimental practices of science, these shifts have influenced a number of industries, including business, education, psychology, technology, and life itself. In fact, because these shifts happen at such a fundamental level, they do more than merely influence these industries, but change and evolve them at their core.

For instance, technology has had, and continues to have, a tremendous effect on the way we live or lives, particularly in the way we do our jobs. With its progress into the digital age, snail mail and fax machines have been replaced by email and pdfs, most notably executed from a smart phone from anywhere, as opposed to the confines of an office. For example, the stock market. Trades can now be made directly from the investor online, from anywhere, in a matter of seconds.

These shifts are not only evident in the practical applications of technology in our lives, but in how we view the world around us. For a very long time and a long time ago, science placed the Earth at the center of the universe. Then, about five-hundred years ago, Copernicus came along and modeled a Universe that placed the Sun at the center.

This shift to a less Earth-centric outlook has—again, with help from the progress of technology—led to a view of the universe that includes not only our own solar system, but also an understanding of seemingly infinite galaxies, empirical evidence of black holes, and the brain-swooshing size of the Universe and how tiny we are in it.

This month’s Quality looks at two potential paradigm shifts in our industry concerning additive manufacturing and audits. Find out how these shifts could come about with “Keeping Up with Additive Manufacturing” and “Remote Quality Management System Audits: An ISO 9001 Auditor’s Perspective and Lessons Learned.”

Enjoy and thanks for reading!