The Evolution of Technology

Journey of Technology, Technological Revolutions and why learn about Technology

Ever wondered what the journey of Technology was like?

Here’s the YouTube video if you prefer to watch.

Introduction

The word ‘Technology’ is derived from Greek origins. Oxford dictionary defines it as — “the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes, especially in industry.”

Over time, as we humans evolved, so did Technology.

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The control of fire, the invention of ships — and wheels — these are all notable technological advancements. But it was not until the Industrial Revolution that the human capacity for production was DRASTICALLY increased.

Technological Revolutions

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They are any period of time where one or more existing technologies are replaced by new ones.

Our journey starts with…

The First Industrial Revolution

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The First Industrial Revolution started in Europe and the United States, from about 1760 to 1840. It caused the transition of manufacturing processes from hand — to machines and mechanized systems.

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The rise of the steam engine in Great Britain, along with other innovations like new chemical manufacturing, iron production, railway transport systems, and many others gave rise to mechanized factory systems.The loss of agricultural work was suddenly complemented by many new ones in industry. This resulted in a rise of standard of living for many people.

Then we have…

The Second Industrial Revolution

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The Second Industrial Revolution is generally dated between 1870 and 1914, ending at the dawn of World War I.

It was a phase of rapid standardization, industrialization, and refinement of many of the technological systems that were introduced earlier. The most significant noble inventions include: the use of electrical power, telephones and the internal combustion engine.

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Large-scale assembly lines allowed mass production of standardized products, taking our productive capacity — to a totally different level. This required improved organizational methods, and gave birth to — modern business management.

The enormous expansion of rail and telegraph lines allowed for the rapid movement of people and ideas, resulting in a wave of globalization.

Then comes…

Third Industrial Revolution — The Digital Revolution

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The Digital Revolution, which started from about the early 1960s — is the shift from mechanical and analogue electronic technology to digital electronics.

Central to this revolution is the mass production and use of transistors, and integrated circuits (ICs), — as well as — their derived technologies — including microprocessors, computers, digital cell phones, and — yes of course, the Internet.

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So, you could ask — we are still here right?

The Fourth Industrial Revolution — Industry 4.0

We are stepping into the fourth industrial revolution — “Industry 4.0”.

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Industry 4.0 aims to — use smart information systems to collect, transmit and use data to add business value. That’s why traditional business processes and manufacturing today are being transformed with the use of Information Technology.

Among the notable technologies in this revolution, we have — Artificial Intelligence, Internet Of Things (IoT), Big Data, Robotics, Cloud Computing, Autonomous Vehicles etc. There is no end to BuzzWords in this age of Information.

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What the future holds is hard to say. But we are expected to have some major breakthroughs soon in energy, biotechnology, genetic engineering, quantum computing, nanotechnology and many other promising fields.

It is also believed that we will reach Technological Singularity within this century — the point at which the intelligence of an AI will surpass human intelligence — and will continue to do so, at — an exponential rate.

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Now, that is both promising and scary at the same time.

Why is it important to learn about Technology?

While Revolutions are great, they come with a lot of challenges. Industry 4.0 has its fair as well — like privacy issues, moral dilemmas, lack of standards and regulations etc.

But the most daunting challenge is — dealing with the loss of countless jobs to automation and AI. Research shows for developed countries like the US, 30–50% of jobs are at risk of automation. While for developing countries like Bangladesh, it’s over 60%!

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Now, Just try to imagine a society where over half the people don’t have a livelihood.

Not a nice visualization, right?

Conclusion

While, we made the future sound very dark — It really has a lot of promises too.

human beings are doing things that they never dreamt of, going places they never thought they could. And Most of that is thanks to technology.

Don’t be fooled, Many new jobs still are going to be created, in new and emerging fields. You just have to continuously educate yourself, because the machines aren’t going to stop learning.

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But there’s one thing that we CAN be certain about, is that —

THE FUTURE IS UNCERTAIN.

Thanks for reading ❤ Tech Care!


See also