Things I come across that make me wonder, laugh, enjoy, think and experience life in general
Today we stand at the Information Age’s frontier: the Hybrid Age. The Hybrid Age is a new sociotechnical era that is unfolding as technologies merge with each other and humans merge with technology ⎯ both at the same time. Information technology’s exponentially increasing power is propelling other fields forward at accelerating rates, allowing them to transcend their individual limitations in scale and speed. This applies to DNA sequencing, 3-D printing and manufacturing, and almost every other technological sphere. Other fields are also helping IT to accelerate, even potentially overcoming Moore’s Law, which predicted that integrated-circuit capacity doubles approximately every two years. Microprocessors are now reaching the physical limitation of two-dimensional silicon chips as transistors reach atomic size. Computer scientists are teaming up with physicists to explore subatomic quantum computing, in which electrons could become conduits of unique data; biologists have made breakthroughs in molecular computing, which uses enzymes and DNA strands to replace silicon chips altogether. Silicon Valley might soon be something of a misnomer as ever more companies and universities start investing in research on oxygen, carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus.The cross-pollination of leading-edge sectors such as information technology, biotechnology, pervasive computing, robotics, neuroscience and nanotechnology spells the end of certain turf wars over nomenclature.
It is neither the “Bio Age” nor the “Nano Age” nor the “Neuro Age,” but the hybrid of all of these at the same time. At the same time, our own relationship to technology is moving beyond the instrumental to the existential. There is an accelerating centripetal dance between what technologies are doing outside us and inside us. Externally, technology no longer simply processes our instructions on a one-way street. Instead, it increasingly provides intelligent feedback. Internally, we are moving beyond using technology only to dominate nature toward making ourselves the template for technology, integrating technologies within ourselves physically. We don’t just use technology; we absorb it.