I wanted to share with everyone an epiphany I had today: technology is amazing. More specifically, how quickly we have advanced technology in the last 100 years is amazing. Today we take so much for granted. Computers, cars, airplanes, televisions, cell phones, phones in general, and many, many other pieces of technology are treated as if they have always been there. In fact, we have gotten so used to having these things around that sometimes we treat them like nuisances. I think if we take a step back and really think about how today’s technology developed then we might find a new appreciation for our electronic contraptions.
The fossil fuel burning car as we know it today has only been around for about 120 years or so. The the technology that makes radio possible has been around for about 200 years, but a commercially viable radio was only invented about 120 years ago. Same with the motion picture camera, 120 years, give or take. Are you starting to see a pattern here? Seems to me that something just clicked with humans about 120 years back and we haven’t stopped since. Airplanes, televisions, satellites, space crafts, rockets, nuclear weapons, computers, cell phones, satellite communications, microwave ovens, refrigerators, and particle accelerators have all been invented in the 120 years that have followed.
The list goes on and on and will continue to grow. So my epiphany was that something happened with humans in the late 1800s that caused a rapid expansion of technology. Granted, most of it was built upon existing technology, but no period in human history before then ever had such rapid development. What I haven’t figured out is how we made that leap. Was it just the perfect combination of socioeconomic conditions? Maybe there was some sort of mystical conscience shift. I don’t really believe in things like that, but I guess anything is possible. Any comments or enlightenment on this would be greatly appreciated. I know I don’t have an answer.