Emerging Revolutionary Technologies
It turns out that I won the #PredictTheFuture challenge hosted by @daltono. To celebrate today I rewatched the Isaac Arthur YouTube video: "Quiet Revolution: Technologies that will change the World". I believe that this was the first video on his channel I watched.
In case you missed the Actifit report post a while back explaining why I review his videos for my Actifit reports: There is a global pandemic and since I am self-isolating as much as possible daily posts about being home all day got monotonous. I am interested in the topics Isaac Arthur covers, the pandemic is going on longer than I ever imagined it would and since each of his videos are roughly a half hour long on average I can get around at least a thousand steps walking or running in place while I listen.
The video starts out describing a day in the life of two characters. One lives in the year 1717 and the other lives in 2017. That provides a contrast on how technology has an impact on daily life. The rest of the video talks about the contrast and similarity in the day of a character named Sam who lives in the year 2017 and Hannah who lives in 2077.
I guess for the dramatization three hundred years between the first set of characters was chosen to emphasize the differences. I think maybe that inflates the differences though. 1717 was less than a century after the 1624 Statute of Monopolies that established modern patent law for most. If the first character in 1717 lived in colonial America the American patent law won't exist until 1790. India's modern patent laws started in 1856 and China's modern patent laws began in 1898.
My point is that intellectual property law needs to be considered when evaluating past technological progress. Patents incentivize the creation of inventions so it's really not surprising that technological progress has increased substantially after patent law became well established and could be internationally enforced.
I'll stop digressing. Obviously the quality of daily life is better now than it has been in the past and there's plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the quality of daily life further improving. Knowledge builds upon itself. A lot of the technologies Isaac Arthur speculates about Hannah using in the year 2077 are feasible with a room-temperature superconducting material and science is really close to developing that material. After room-temperature superconductors are commercially available we're likely to experience a new industrial revolution.
I wouldn't mind living the convenience of Hannah's 2077 life that Isaac Arthur described. I am sure though that sometimes Hannah will imagine living in the "easier days" of 2017. For example Isaac Arthur described Hannah giving a business presentation for her software firm. She doesn't have to haul physical hardcopies of charts to the meeting because Hannah can call them up virtually from the cloud. Isaac Arthur than states that audience members can change the parameters of those same charts on their screens without having to ask Hannah. O.K. Maybe that is convenient but there is an obvious downside to that. Hannah had a three year chart because her presentation was focused on the last three years. An audience member extends the chart to go back five years. Is Hannah prepared to answer a question about a chart value from four or five years ago?
The aspect of 2077 life as described by Isaac Arthur that I would most like to live is the education tailored to each individual student. Right now due to the pandemic there has been an unexpected opportunity to come up with effective distance education. I am sure after the pandemic there will be studies that will examine the effects, if any, learning at home had on public school students. It could end up being a game changer for public education.
I am self-learning Python programming. At times it can be difficult and it would be great to have a system that could notice my frustration and adapt to help me get over a hurdle.
This report was published via Actifit app (Android | iOS). Check out the original version here on actifit.io