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The Future of Humanity - Part 2: Technology


Humanity. Over time we’ve changed so radically that our ancestors would barely be able to recognize us as the same species. We’ve gone from living in small groups with minimal living needs to living in mega-cities with lives obsessed with the concept of “quality of life.” The question then is have we become a better society or are we no better than when we started? I believe we’re on the right path and the world is significantly better than many would lead you to believe.

Technology: We will become one with our creations

We are already Cyborgs. Think about it. Doing the work that you do and on the scale that you do it, would you be able to do all of it without some kind of technology? Could Computer Graphics majors create their art without their Tech? Could Businesses conduct business en masse with their customers and other business without communications technologies? Could you travel great distances in short spans of time without Transportation technologies? Could you plan a party without your phone, e-mail, Facebook, or Twitter?

Technology has already become a part of us. They are an extension of our minds. We rely on technology for most of the things we do today. From keeping in contact with family, writing down our thoughts, entertaining ourselves, keeping track of our fitness and other goals, learning more about the world around us and ourselves, and even having fun by watching cute cat GIFs. Through technology we can create wonderous things. Art, Music, Cures, Business, Entertainment, Communication, Loving moments, and more technology.

There is this notion that Technology is somehow unnatural. That is one of the reasons some people are resistant to the progress of technology. Well, let’s think about that for a second. Life is a constantly evolving process. Our planet is natural. Since our planet is natural, its creations are natural as well. Regardless of whether you believe in creationism or evolution, we as humans are natural as well. If we consider what the planet produces natural because the planet is natural, and we are natural beings, wouldn’t the things we produce be considered natural as well? Millenia ago, man needed fire, so we produced fire. We needed tools, so we made tools. We needed shelter, so we made shelter. This went on and on and on until we are where we are today. We needed Social Networking, so we made it. We need nanotechnology so we’re making it. As natural as fire was back then, so are the technologies we produce today. Technology is nature. Technology is a part of us, and they will only further integrate with us.

Currently, technology resides outside of our bodies, but that is going to change. One of the many fears of having technology in our bodies is failure. Well, if you think about it, you’ll realize that our bodies are technology too. We have pumps and valves and electrical impulses constantly surging through our body that when disturbed can cause illnesses. We function exactly like technology. The difference is that we have full control of the technology that we create, while the technology of our bodies is still being discovered. We can make backups of our data that is present in our iPhones and computer, but we can’t backup our minds. Yet. These are the limitations of our bodies. Wouldn’t it be amazing if just like our devices, we could upgrade and improve our bodies beyond their current limitations? Physical and cognitive limitations. Scientists are producing technologies with carbon nanotubes that can detect various diseases using a single drop of our blood. Imagine the possibilities if that technology was inside us at all times. We could be aware of our ailments immediately. It has been said time and time again that the best form of healthcare is prevention or early attention. With that kind of technology, that concept is essentially fulfilled. These kinds of technologies have some pretty heavy potential repercussions and consequences that I’ll address further in the upcoming articles.

But what about other forms of technology? Communication, Leisure, Performance, Production, Business, etc. There are many different kinds of technologies and they are all growing at an astronomical rate. There is a concept known as Moore’s Law that describes the typical rate at which technology improves based on the number of transistors are able to be fitted into an integrated circuit. Moore’s law is this:

“Moore’s law is the observation that, over the history of computing hardware, the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles approximately every two years.” – Wikipedia

While Moore’s Law has held true since its observation by Gordon Moore in 1965, we are starting to see the end of this trend. It’s slowing down. But the reality is that while these silicon-based circuits have a limitation that we can see, new technologies have no such limitation. Things like graphene, quantum computing, organic chips, etc. We’ve come to a point where we need to find new solutions in order to prevent us from hitting a wall. And it’s happening. Fast.

At the rate that we are going, with the priority of technology focusing on getting smaller and becoming more energy-efficient, it is not unfeasible to think of the future as integrating most technologies we know of today into our bodies. This is where we get into human augmentations. Whether it is by means of larger mechanical replacements of body parts, which we already do with things like the heart, or by nanotechnology. The kind of things we can do are borderline Godlike. And it’s not my intention to sound blasphemous, but rather only to embrace what we’ve achieved as a species in such a relatively small amount of time.

We are reaching a new point in history where we as species must decide what we will do next. We are beginning to reach our limitations, but through technology we can remove those limitations. The Future of Humanity, as I see it, involves humanity embracing this technology. Maybe not in the Robocop-like way where we are all literal cyborgs in the traditional sense of the word (though some will undoubtedly do it), but rather using technology to upgrade us from the inside out. Extremely small stuff. Nanotechnology and biomedical engineering with Genetic Modification.

We will change. We will become something else. And it’s not something to fear. It will help us. And it’s going to be great, but it will take time.

A great thinker once said:

“We are as gods and might as well get good at it.” – Stewart Brand