RE REASON A: THE RATE OF CHANGE
The world is moving faster.
Those who are well versed in the Technological Singularity, Accelerationism and the Law of Accelerating Returns are familiar with the concept of exponential change. For the uninitiated, the central thesis states that change begets faster change, ad Infinitum. We build upon that which we already know. Market forces and Darwinian forces compel us into acquiring new knowledge which is always better, cheaper and faster. Better, cheaper and faster produces more life and not less life, more ROI and not less ROI; and thus, the system is optimizing for these attributes.
Is our technological progress random or does it follow an inherent logic? How do we prove that Man is progressing at an exponential rate? Indeed, some will argue that perhaps the medieval Man regarded his life as ever changing; therefore, he too would have believed he was on the verge of the Technological Singularity had such a concept existed. We need a mechanism by which to prove our claim of technological acceleration. We believe that one need only turn to the General Purpose Technologies possessed by Man to realize that progress is indeed occurring faster.
An examination of Paradigm 1 vs Paradigm 2 reveals the following: It took at least 100,000 years to go from our original communication method – grunting – to our second communication method – the spoken word. It took us less time to add our third communication method – the written word. However, an examination of Paradigm 5 vs Paradigm 6 reveals that it took us much less time to go from the telegraph and telephone to the internet as compared to grunting vs speaking. Thus, Man is indeed progressing faster now than ever before.
Remarkably, we can make the same claim in regards to the rate of change about all our major General Purpose Technologies. It took hundreds of thousands of years to go from transportation via ambulation to transportation via the wheel; but it will only take a century plus to go from transportation via a car to transportation via an autonomous drone.
A second means by which we can prove that change is exponential is by examining the rate of change from one Paradigm to another.
It may have taken hundreds of thousands of years to get from Paradigm 1 to 2. It took a few centuries to shift from Paradigm 4 to Paradigm 5. Therefore, we should predict – and anticipate – that progress will continue to accelerate. Paradigm 6 will appear shortly and then perhaps rapidly give way to paradigm 7, where our mode of transportation may become orbital spacecrafts and our communication method may evolve into telepathic quantum entanglement.
Once a paradigm shifts, society soon follows. Nearly everything about the way we live becomes anew. This time, change will be exponential. Are we ready to witness our entire human landscape change right before our very eyes? Are we ready to live foreign lives? A new society will soon arise. A remarkable transformation, indeed.