If you could compress several hundred years of technological evolution powered by fossil fuels, this is what it would look like. It starts slowly, but then there is a profusion of tools, each spring loaded by fossil fuels, a cancerous profusion. They go off rapidly and that’s it, end of civilization. Who and what will reload the springs? Will it be reloaded with another fossil fuel bonanza? Even if a new source of energy is found, what type of RNA will be around in a destroyed ecosystem to reload the springs? Without humans what is technology’s purpose? With humans what is technology’s purpose?
Below is one of the early technological tinkerers. Not really that early, you can see the buildings behind him. There is already enough surplus energy in society, because of agriculture (another form of mining) to provide enough free time to explore possibilities. Nature loves to explore and discover new possibilities as seen in her profusion of different species. How pleasing to have exploration and innovation occurring at another scale, the human scale. The inventor doesn’t know it yet, but he is an intermediary between information and the physical world, an RNA. In studying the brain I continuously hear how wonderful and complex an organ it truly is, but the complexity does not lie with the human brain, but with the information to which it makes small changes. The human brain is little more than a rewards seeking organ, just like most of the other brains on the planet. Its uniqueness is in its evolved ability to make small changes in information in the design of tools. Most of the “awesome” complexity doesn’t reside in the human brain. The complexity builds within the information. For instance, there isn’t a person alive that could specify all of the components and materials of a personal computer, it just doesn’t exist in a human brain. But a human brain can make small changes at the margin using specialized knowledge. Human brains are vastly overrated and are not the most complex things in the universe.
Humans mostly just build tools and seek reward, that’s what they’ve evolved to do without much circumspection. The tools can be very complex and effective at eating and processing everything in their paths, turning it into cancer infrastructure, also known as factories, roads, cities and so on. The rewards flow through the arteries of the expanding cancer to the humans whose dopamine continuously motivates them towards new rewards. What is there to do about it? Probably not much because most of humankind are not conscious. They may be awake, but they’re not conscious and may actually have neurological defenses against being fully conscious. Now we have to watch mindless buffoons compete for the right to lead an equally mindless cancerous growth while thumping on Bibles and waving flags in the air. There’s not a whole lot to be said for “the most complex thing in the universe”, the human brain, if all it can produce are simpletons, flim-flam artists and mindless tinkerers busily assembling tools of self-destruction.