I think that the reason there is such a vigorous debate around the technologies that were building–are they going to create jobs or destroy jobs and what will artificial intelligence be able to do, and all that host of discussion–is that we’re at a point where technology is developing faster than our ability to understand it. So we’re perpetually behind. We’re building things that we don’t really know how to interpret what they mean.
Yet, the fact that our technology moves so quickly is also an empowering fact. Our tools, even our most complex ones, grow in capabilities at rates that our minds can’t even keep up with. This knowledge should give us an enormous amount of confidence as we confront all the problems of our age that worry everyone.
We can already see this confidence in action in two ways. One, the audacity of the projects that we are collectively undertaking seems to grow and expand constantly. Two, and even more interesting, is the fact that over the course of the last century usage of the word “impossible” in books has fallen by half and continues to decline. This means that the tongue-in-cheek adage that the difficult can be done immediately, the impossible just takes a little time, is finally coming true.