posted on Jan, 12 2013 @ 03:45 AM
Although we obviously can't really say how far we are from a civilization we have no concrete information on, I do think that humanity has the
potential to make incredible advances in the next hundred years or so if we are willing to focus our resources. While the limitations of our brains
might very well be a limiting factor in our ultimate developmental capabilities, if you consider the progress we've made recently even with the
enormous amount of potential collective intellect we're currently wasting, I think it's safe to say that we could still go a lot farther with our
current biological hardware.
Just think about how many people are on this planet who have no access to education or encouragement to use their innate intellect. I often wonder how
many Stephen Hawkings or Noonian Soongs there are in the world just wandering around in a third world country scrounging for food, or sitting on a
couch watching TV after spending all day doing meaningless work simply because they don't have the resources or fundamental training to pursue their
innate potential. Imagine what we could accomplish in 50 years if the human race as a whole decided to focus its resources on ensuring high quality
education and encouraging natural human curiosity for the billions of people on this planet.
We have a much greater raw capacity to learn than we did even twenty years ago, with instant access to almost any information through the internet,
unprecedented ease of communication with almost anyone in the world, and how much more efficiently we can learn now by using technology to aid in the
acquisition of knowledge. It's also conceivable that advances in genetics and technology could provide us with a means to alter our biology to create
smarter, longer living humans who would have greater intellectual capacity and longer lives to use their training.
All of this is simultaneously depressing and kind of exciting. Living in the United States, it really doesn't seem like there's going to be any
significant push to expand the availability or quality of education any time soon (although, thankfully, many other countries in the world have a more
progressive attitude). On the other hand, it seems we're sitting on so much unused potential, that once we finally make a decision to use it, it's
very conceivable that we could suddenly see a period of almost exponential growth and incredible advancements. If by some miracle the human race did
suddenly decide to become cooperative and use its collective resources to facilitate and develop the natural capabilities of as many people as
possible, I could easily us having viable space travel and technology so advanced it seems like magic within a century or two, perhaps much sooner.