World Changing Levels of Key Technologies

Nextbigfuture has framed levels of world altering economic progress and identified progress we are making with key super technologies that has massive world changing potential.

There are examples of significant world-changing developments and technologies. There was the rise of China, the rise and impact of the internet and cellphones-smartphones. There was the first impact of the relatively aborted space age with the moon landing and hope for a transformational space age.

Changing the world economy at a significant level usually takes two decades or more. Even the fast economic rise of China took from 1975 to 2000 before China moved into the top 6 countries based on nominal GDP and 2009 before China was close to Japan for second place.

There was a surge in China coverage in western media because of Tianmen Square and then the handover of Hong Kong. However, it was not until about 2004-2005 that there was sustained coverage of China’s rising economic power and status.

Electrical power went from 10% of US households in 1908 to 80% of US households in 1942.
Cars went from 10% of US households in 1915 to 80% of US households in 1971.
Color TV went from 10% of US households in 1966 to 80% in 1981.
Computers were 20% of US households in 1992 to 67% in 2005.
Cellphones went from 10% of US households in 1994 to 84% in 2009.

Technology Adoption was later for most technology in different countries around the world.

Electric cars were 5% of new car sales in 2020 and are forecast to be 50-90% of new cars sales in 2030. It will take until 2035-2045 for electric cars to dominate all cars. There are about 90 million cars sold per year but 1.6 billion total cars on the world’s roads.

Despite the lag in actual usage, it has become pretty clear to most that electric cars will dominate the world at some point in the near future.

Self-driving could emerge with feasibility and minor penetration up until 2024-2025. However, self-driving hardware is being built into existing cars so software updates will enable millions of cars and trucks to convert to self-driving when the software issues are solved. Self-driving cars will then closely follow the adoption rates of electric cars. Although ICE cars will also be able to adopt self-driving hardware and software.

The true space age is clearly emerging with SpaceX and the fully reusable rocket. The fully reusable SpaceX Super Heavy Starship will increase the volume of payload delivered to orbit and beyond by thousands of times. The number of people who have gone to space will explode from just over 500 total and ten per year to tens of thousands per year. There will be space stations and construction in space at thousands of times past levels.

Personal life-changing technology and science that is coming are antiaging and aging reversal medicine and intelligence amplification via Neuralink interfaces and other genetic engineering enhancements.

Technology is Easier to Adopt Than Lifestyle

HIV coverage of services has been steadily increasing. In 2019, 68% of adults and 53% of children living with HIV globally were receiving lifelong antiretroviral therapy (ART).

COVID vaccination coverage has passed 60% of adults in Israel and this level should be reached in the USA by May, 2021.

Only 2.7 percent of Americans get a moderate amount of exercise, eat right, avoid excessive weight gain and avoid smoking. 71 percent of the adults surveyed did not smoke, 38 percent ate a healthy diet, 10 percent had a normal body fat percentage and 46 percent got sufficient amounts of physical activity. Sixteen percent had three of the healthy lifestyle behaviors, 37 percent had two, 34 percent had one and 11 percent had none.

Only 30% of Americans engage in strength training.

Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.

Known for identifying cutting edge technologies, he is currently a Co-Founder of a startup and fundraiser for high potential early-stage companies. He is the Head of Research for Allocations for deep technology investments and an Angel Investor at Space Angels.

A frequent speaker at corporations, he has been a TEDx speaker, a Singularity University speaker and guest at numerous interviews for radio and podcasts.  He is open to public speaking and advising engagements.

15 thoughts on “World Changing Levels of Key Technologies”

  1. nah. cheap energy is the instant communications of before – easy and readily available for all in G7 who want it. it's rare metals and potable water that will drive conflict, alow for overcoming scarcity, accelerate progress, and allow high rate wealth creation.

  2. post-scarcity seems even more 'out there' than anti-aging. Most people, i would argue, believe that the world is zero-sum — so the concept of no conflict, everything for All… super inspiring but just too fraught with human potential for wanting to have 'more than the other guy' (whether they need it or even want it)

  3. how else would the Kids communicate these days? though i like post-scarcity. It sounds individualistic and enabling – not entitled. More for those who are willing to reach for it…

  4. One of the graphs above actually is interactive – you can click "Add Technology" and Television is an option – but the history for it doesn't appear to go far enough back to show it well. Maybe lack of good records prior to intro of color TV?

  5. 10 percent had a normal body fat percentage

    That line does not make sense given the accepted meaning of the word "normal".

    And why is it that all the graphs plot colour TV (or color for the "u" impaired)? Why not TVs? Surely the change from no TV to TV is a much more significant development than from B&W TV to Colour TV? Or does that particular curve not match the story they are trying to tell?

  6. Actually with one caveat. It will be far easier to keep a 30yo from aging than it will be to fix the already crippled aged body of my 96yo grandmother. She would look awful funny looking like a 20yo hunchback that is 4'11". Also, with our social spending we are going to have a hard time supporting extreme elderly people who live another 20-30 years without significant improvements in healthy capabilities.
    The average baby boomer ages are between 57-75 years old (71.6 million in the U.S.) No matter what we do, we are going to lose a lot of elderly before we have widespread adoption of anti aging treatments.

  7. cheap, clean, ubiquitous, domestic, reliable, baseload energy.
    That means fission nuclear for the foreseeable future.

  8. Meh. Technology is an extension of policy, a society's social norms, and its acceptance of risk. Transparency vs privacy. Risk aversion vs tolerance. Short-termism vs generational transformation. Individualism vs group identity. Inequality vs minimum standards. Trickle-down vs large-scale-conditional release. Socialized benefits vs pre-earned benefits. Closed boundaries vs self-defined boundaries. Gamefied existence vs buffet-style living.
    I would be more interested in Asking:
    How can Technology bring about Post-Scarcity (better than singularity, better than work optional, better than unlimited positive GDP% increases). To live with only your own Limits – to achieve a system where Your potential/performance Bubble Never interfered with anyone else's.

  9. Heavy metal accumulation is reversible via chelation with Alpha Lipoic Acid (which I am actually doing as I write this). Most of the rest is life style changes. This implies that there most certainly will be anti aging reversal for those who want it and are willing to do the necessary things on a personal level to make it happen. Average life span will become as meaningless statistic as average per capita income to those who are self-motivated.

  10. There is not going to be anti aging reversal. The youth bodies are already collapsing from bigger loads of new virus mutants, heavy metals, other toxins and bad life style. Their health is worse than their elders. It is common to see teenagers these days fatter and in worse health conditions than their parents. Our science is not in a position even to address that, looking for answers in the wrong places such as genetics.

  11. I agree, we need CHEAP and clean energy. The clean part is easier than the cheap part, I am afraid. I still have a lot of hope for fusion. Lots of things happening in the fusion industry lately. MIFTI and ZAP are moving rapidly. Helion has been quiet, but judging by their funding and hiring, they are doing really well.

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