computer scientist

Tangibility of Technology

Humans have realized efficiency through ideas and shifts in technology, which have led to many revolutions and advances through the years. With all this advancement, technology is not what it used to be. Instead of a tangible invention there are now two parts of the puzzle: the part that one touches and the part that one interacts with. For example, a computer has two design qualities–the hardware and the software. The hardware is what one touches and feels, how one controls a computer, like a mouse and keyboard. The software, on the other hand, is what shows up on the screen and is what the user interfaces with. The interesting thing about software is that it is completely fake. One can never touch it, one changes nothing physically, and yet it is natural and world changing. Reality and physics no longer matter with software. One can do anything and everything within the realm of human ability. Humans no longer are plowing farmland for a living; we are now hard at work sitting at our computers eight hours a day bouncing data around via the internet and coming up with new and vivid ideas, all on systems that are completely faux.

Software is not tangible in reality; it has no mass and no physical properties. A software developer can’t use tools that one would normally use to build an invention. They can only use the tool that God provided man with, a brain. The same tool that derived all other technological inventions is now the only tool that controls the software. Of course, the input is much more complicated. It requires a tangible way to use it, right now, but what if the brain could be directly connected to a computer, making all processes completely abstract and have nothing to do with reality. Hypothetically, if one could become completely submerged in processes only available in abstract realities this could become the most powerful tool ever created as one would never be limited by physics. To have every thought, idea, or creation available on demand would be incredible, but it may also lead to the inevitable collapse of humanity. Even if one’s mind were completely abstracted from reality, he would still be human and completely tangible in reality. A computer with the ability to use itself to invent and build on is certainly inevitable, and humanity will start to fade away from the abstraction of reality and start to die off. In the tech industry, this is considered the technological singularity.

However, we have yet to see computers who are able ask questions. They can only answer and analyze questions, but never ask them, which is what humans have been able to do for the longest time and which have put them in front of every other species. In reality, software has many tangible elements that limit the theoretical idea of the demise of humanity. One example of this would be that software requires hardware and energy in order to run which does give software limitations such as processing power or storage space. And then there is the fact that computers cost billions to design, develop, and manufacture.

We have seen incredible innovation through the past decade; devices are becoming faster, cheaper, and smaller. Technology firms are becoming more and more efficient with new devices coming into consumer markets every year and are making huge profits which is important for the future of technological development as more and more individuals will be creating software and hardware for the advancement of technology. This will lead to more efficient technologies and an acceleration of the technological abstraction that will cause the technological singularity and change the world as we know it. Technology is abstract by design and is creating new ways for humans to change and create new ideas, and we are just now beginning to abstract away from the tangible versions of technology which have been abstracted from so far that technology is starting to move outside of reality and into a more fluid area of creation and science. We are fundamentally changing the way we learn, create, and entertain. Humanity has just tasted what technology has to offer.