Ben Thompson while writing on AI:
“In fact, we already have a better word for this kind of innovation: technology. Technology, to use Merriam-Webster’s definition, is “the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area.” The story of technology is the story of humanity: the ability to control fire, the wheel, clubs for fighting — all are technology. All transformed the human race, thanks to our ability to learn and transmit knowledge; once one human could control fire, it was only a matter of time until all humans could.”
That last line stuck with me. Effectively all we do is build on the shoulders of humans before us. Our ability to communicate and share, that’s how we survived in the first place, as argued by Yuval Noah Harari in Sapiens.
From Chris Dixon’s masterpiece last week (emphasize mine):
“Another way to characterize Shannon’s achievement is that he was first to distinguish between the logical and the physical layer of computers. (This distinction has become so fundamental to computer science that it might seem surprising to modern readers how insightful it was at the time—a reminder of the adage that “the philosophy of one century is the common sense of the next.”)”