Print Friendly and PDF

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic” – one of Arthur C. Clarke’s 3 laws. Being a science fiction fan, I am familiar with a lot of TV Series, Movies, and Books where advanced technology has single-handily changed the Economics of a planet.

In recent years complex science and technological tools have not only aided the global economy but have also played a role in driving it to the sky. Economics is all about the production and regulation of goods and services. In 2021, we all know what goods and services we need. It all comes to how efficiently those goods and services are procured, processed, and delivered. That’s where technology dives in, making the economics efficient.
Earliest tools made by humans have dated back to 3.3 million years ago, we discovered fire 1 million years ago, 20000 – 15000 years ago humans came up with technologies like wheels, pottery, and agriculture techniques, from 6000 BCE to 950 BCE came irrigation, sailing, iron, gunpowder, windmill, By 1876 we invented the telephone and after that, it was a gold rush. Every year a breakthrough! From Computer & Spaceflight to CRISPR and Artificial Intelligence we were at warp speed. Considering the pace at which we are accelerating it safe to assume we will be looking at a very different world in the next 50 years. Who knows what’s next? Maybe Cold Fusion, Gene Editing, Artificial Gravity and I could go on and on.
Lead firms have persistently invested a huge amount of money in research and development. Mega Blocks like data science, artificial intelligence, space exploration, etc. have been explored by more and more private companies and leads us to not one but many questions.

“Is Research and Development worth it?

Don’t we reach the peak of technological development?

Is it environmentally sustainable to use the help of new technologies?

Moving too fast?

Time for a global government?

Is technology overpowering us? “

All these questions may turn into become good topics for debates but the point is some new technologies have opened to us a new world of opportunities. Emerging technological fields like biotechnology, nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, data science, etc have not only grown into a strong economic foothold but also delivered desired results. Companies like Neuralink have safely and successfully integrated chips into monkey and pig brains and are well on their way to human trials. This has not only opened up a new field of science but opened up enormous economic opportunities.

Talking about India, Tesla and Starlink have slowly made their way inside this country of the abundant workforce. Electric Vehicles have had a slow growth rate but no one can deny that they are the future. For a nation like India, these companies open up loads of economic opportunities, not only for businesses and laborers but also for scientists, students, investors, and many more people.

You see, when a new company experimenting with emerging technologies starts its operations anywhere in the world, it not only creates a new industry but also serves as an inspiration to Entrepreneurs across the globe who then create a web of infrastructure, research, and development. SpaceX and Starlink started their operations long ago in the US, soon many small space technologies companies like Skyroot and Bellatrix made an entrance in the Indian market opening up new opportunities for Indians.

When a new technology emerges, it opens to talk about new policies and that brings political interference, while being important especially in a democratic nation, it also brings chaos and conflicts. This is a game that the government has to play and believe me when I say it plays a great role in the economics of that country. While government interference is not healthy for the industry some critical policies designed to keep a check on big corporations are necessary to provide equal opportunity to young entrepreneurs of the nation.

I think I have been a lot in favor of emerging technologies so you might think, what is the catch? Like everything, there are things we should worry about and problems we should solve. Emerging technologies and development in automation have been a key driver in this exponential growth and it also has been a key driver of unemployment. With new technologies coming up, the old ones go obsolete and at this rate, if a person doesn’t keep dynamics up, he or she will lose his job, it’s as simple as that!
To ensure this cycle of development continues and to keep economies stable we must keep people employed and that’s where the fuel of growth comes in – Knowledge. It is the most powerful weapon in the hands of a human and that is what you need to survive in this economy.

Unemployment might get solved but we also face other dangers, now this might seem farfetched but technologies have this hidden trait of backfiring. Not long ago there came this airplane – believed to have come straight out of a science fiction movie, called Concorde. It could fly at twice the speed of the sound. It changed the way people used to look at travel but in the end, it failed. Leading to many crashes and deaths this technology was discontinued. A similar approach can be seen by SpaceX who aims to use space rockets for travel within our planet. If successful this can bring big changes to the travel industry and every nation’s economy.

In the future, we may see many emerging technologies backfiring with the most likely being Gene Editing and Artificial Intelligence. Both technologies are immensely fragile and volatile while also having huge potential. Considering all the dangers, it is prudent that we move into this world of technology with caution.

Keeping all this in mind, emerging technologies are like Schrodinger’s cat. They are capable of both good bad. They have the potential of exponentially changing the global economics of the world but in the end, it all depends on how we as species use and sustain it.


Articles of Mindset.co.za

Illustrations By Tanishq Nakra


Print Friendly and PDF