Jack Ma, Chairman of the Board of Alibaba Group, delivers a speech at Global Big Data Era Guiyang Summit during the Guiyang International Big Data Expo 2015 in Guiyang, capital of southwest China’s Guizhou Province, May 26, 2015. (Xinhua/Ou Dongqu)

(ECNS) — China is progressing from an Information Technology (IT) era to a period that favors Data Technology (DT), Alibaba Group founder Jack Ma said on Wednesday.

The DT era is represented by big data technology, which might appear to be simply an upgrade from previous technologies. However, DT and IT are two essentially different things, Ma said at the Big Data Expo in Guiyang, Guizhou province in southwest China.

“The IT era can be used to strengthen yourself, while the DT period can be utilized to strengthen others. The former places others at your service while the latter allows you to serve others.”

In the IT era, 20 percent of companies grew while another 80 percent were left confused. In contrast, the DT era could unleash the potential of this 80 percent and bring revolutionary change to the world, he said.

Ma added that the IT era turned humans into machines while the DT era transformed machines into smart beings, China Youth Daily reported.

He stated that the No. 1 resource for the manufacturing industry would be data instead of oil.

Pan Yonghua, a senior research manager from Alibaba, believes DT requires better data-processing capabilities.

DT是数据处理技术(Data Technology)的英文缩写。马云曾经在一次演讲中说道:“人类正从IT时代走向DT时代”。那么到底什么是DT,与IT有什么不一样呢?

IT我们已经非常熟悉了,是信息技术(Information Technology)的英文缩写。马云提出,IT时代是以自我控制、自我管理为主,而DT(Data technology)时代,它是以服务大众、激发生产力为主的技术。