Register for an account

X

Enter your name and email address below.

Your email address is used to log in and will not be shared or sold. Read our privacy policy.

X

Website access code

Enter your access code into the form field below.

If you are a Zinio, Nook, Kindle, Apple, or Google Play subscriber, you can enter your website access code to gain subscriber access. Your website access code is located in the upper right corner of the Table of Contents page of your digital edition.

Technology

Limits to technology

Gene ExpressionBy Razib KhanNovember 2, 2011 12:27 AM

Newsletter

Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

A few stray thoughts, which might be worth having a discussion about. Unless one wants to go Soylent Green or Logan's Run both the proponents of stable/declining world population and continued growth have to look to technology. More people means more economic productivity to keep everyone afloat ahead of the Malthusian trap. But even if the population stabilizes, there is still the major problem of the rising dependency fraction due to aging. The only way that we can keep up is by increasing the productivity of the work force. This is especially going to be an issue in a nation like China because of the one child policy (which practically turned out to be a 1.5 child policy). Either "working age" people have to work more productively, or health care has to reduce late in life morbidity so that people can work longer and get the ratio of retirees to workers reasonable. Secondarily, I'm kind of getting sick of the fact that everyone's battery is dying. My battery is dying, your battery is dying. "Hey, can I call you later? My battery is dying." With the rising penetration of smartphones batteries are dying all over the place. I remember a time, back in 2006, when I must have been charging my phone once a week or something! The days. I know that smartphone technology is a step forward, but it goes to show how difficult it is to make a good battery, insofar as we've taken a massive step backward in terms of the battery life that we had come to expect. There's a creeping element of zero sum in all of this; more features means less juice per feature.

2 Free Articles Left

Want it all? Get unlimited access when you subscribe.

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? Register or Log In

Want unlimited access?

Subscribe today and save 70%

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? Register or Log In