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... that went before, it may have been that the cultural accumulation of the previous two to four millennium wouldn't have had a platform to stand on.

Technological progress works primarily by the recombination of existing technologies, and so its intrinsically more of an exponential process than a linear process. People looking for a linear "rate of progress" are of course going to retrodict back to a period "when basically nothing is changing", even if technological progress is occurring at the same exponential rate, because its occurring over generations rather than years, while in addition, the further back in time we are looking, the less complete our picture of the technology and institutions in use.


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Fri May 13th, 2011 at 11:54:22 AM EST
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Have you seen Stuart Kauffman's model of economic innovation in his book At Home in the Universe?

Economics is politics by other means
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon May 16th, 2011 at 04:20:41 AM EST
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