Feb 2, 2021Liked by Rohit Krishnan

Anyone who doesn't see SpaceX (or others like it, I'm not married to Musk) as enormous progress towards the 3rd Industrial Revolution is sleeping on the economic impact we can expect from asteroid mining; that's our next projected source of exponential decrease in costs for a wide category of materials that are relevant in modern manufacturing.

Further, renewable energy is a huge step forward in our economics; the only reason this isn't overwhelmingly apparent to fans of "Stagnation" is that many of the costs of our previous energy strategy are diffuse and externalized.

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I agree, that's kind of my whole point. For us to expect SpaceX or mRNA or renewable energy to have reached the same level of sophistication as it is today, back in the 1970s or 80s or 90s, would've been impossible. For the Great Stagnation that Tyler et al talks about to not have happened, that's the progress we're said to be missing.

My thesis is that in order to get a true breakthrough in 1 area, let's say SpaceX, we need improvements in a whole array of other fields (material science, robotics, machine learning etc). And each of those other fields grow and evolve at different rates, making their S-curves reach their maturity at different times. Which means that reaching the next phase of our overall economic S curve is dependent on a large number of sub-fields also maturing enough. While that could've happened together in the past, there's no reason to assume they all move in lockstep, and in fact the hypothesis would be that they don't!

Ergo, a punctuated equilibrium sort of growth pattern is what we should expect, not one of steady and continuous growth. And hey presto, that's what we *do* see.

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