Biotech and Robotics: The Two Great Technology Waves That Are Coming

A pretty powerful quote from the BigThink website:

[Managing Director of Excel Venture Management, Juan] Enriquez stresses that “life code” (the famous A, G, T, C of DNA) will have the same importance for the next generation as digital code (1’s and 0’s) does now. “Just as from the 1970’s onward, digital code started to drive the global economy, now life code is beginning to be the fundamental driver of the global economy over the next 10, 20, 30 years.” The effects won’t just be felt by Proctor and other members of her industry. “It’s not going to surprise me if our kids end up running on the beach in Florida when they’re 100 years old on regrown body parts, with a much higher quality of life than we can begin to imagine.”

I was talking to my mother-in-law (who is now 80 years old and visiting California from England), and she said that she wouldn’t bring children into the world “the way it is.” But I feel the opposite: I think that my 4 and 7-year-old daughters (her grandchildren) are likely to have much healthier, better, and longer lives than their parents and grandparents—and that will be so largely because of strides in technology.

After the age of 50, for example, 80% of cancers occur. But if my two daughters reach their 50s (in the 2050s), my bet is that cancer will be, not just a broadly manageable disease, but almost universally curable.

And it feels like we are just starting to emerge into the maturity of our species—becoming a global and predominately urban civilization that will one day colonize the solar system.

Here’s Juan Enriquez’s TED talk. In it he highlights two great technology waves that are coming—the biotechnology and robotic waves:

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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