Tuesday, March 15, 2011

About scientific and technological doublings:

Dr. Michio Kaku, Ph.D. indicates: "…. By the end of the twentieth century, science had reached the end of an era, unlocking the secrets of the atom, unraveling the molecule of life, and creating the electronic computer. With these three fundamental discoveries, triggered by the quantum revolution, the DNA revolution, and the computer revolution, the basic laws of matter, life, and computation were, in the main, finally solved …. That epic phase of science is now drawing to a close; one era is ending and another is only beginning …. The next era of science promises to be an even deeper, more thoroughgoing, more penetrating one than the last …. Clearly, we are on the threshold of yet another revolution. HUMAN KNOWLEDGE IS DOUBLING EVERY TEN YEARS [AS PER THE 1998 STANDARDS]. In the past decade, more scientific knowledge has been created than in all of human history. COMPUTER POWER IS DOUBLING EVERY EIGHTEEN MONTHS. THE INTERNET IS DOUBLING EVERY YEAR. THE NUMBER OF DNA SEQUENCES WE CAN ANALYZE IS DOUBLING EVERY TWO YEARS. Almost daily, the headlines herald new advances in computers, telecommunications, biotechnology, and space exploration. In the wake of this technological upheaval, entire industries and lifestyles are being overturned, only to give rise to entirely new ones. But these rapid, bewildering changes are not just quantitative. They mark the birth pangs of a new era …. FROM NOW TO THE YEAR 2020, SCIENTISTS FORESEE AN EXPLOSION IN SCIENTIFIC ACTIVITY SUCH AS THE WORLD HAS NEVER SEEN BEFORE. IN TWO KEY TECHNOLOGIES, COMPUTER POWER AND THE DNA SEQUENCING, WE WILL SEE ENTIRE INDUSTRIES RISE AND FALL ON THE BASIS OF BREATHTAKING SCIENTIFIC ADVANCES. SINCE THE 1950S, THE POWER OF OUR COMPUTERS HAS ADVANCED BY A FACTOR OF ROUGHLY TEN BILLION. IN FACT, BECAUSE BOTH COMPUTER POWER AND DNA SEQUENCING DOUBLE ROUGHLY EVERY TWO YEARS, ONE CAN COMPUTE THE ROUGH TIME FRAME OVER WHICH MANY SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGHS WILL TAKE PLACE .... BY 2020, MICROPROCESSORS WILL LIKELY BE AS A CHEAP AND PLENTIFUL AS SCRAP PAPER, SCATTERED BY THE MILLIONS INTO ENVIRONMENT, ALLOWING US TO PLACE INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS EVERYWHERE. THIS WILL CHANGE EVERYTHING AROUND US, INCLUDING THE NATURE OF COMMERCE, THE WEALTH OF NATIONS, AND THE WAY WE COMMUNICATE, WORK, PLAY, AND LIVE." 

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