“The Exponential Age”

Azeem Azhar’s latest book explores the misunderstood dynamic behind tech’s impact on business and society.

The Exponential Age provides a clear conceptual framework for understanding many of the biggest societal challenges today, as technologies gallop ahead and institutions adapt much more slowly. It could offer deeper analysis of advances in areas outside of computing such as biology. But it is a very readable explanation of why it’s hard for humans to understand exponential change and how that’s a major blindspot at this unique moment in history with numerous exponential developments.

Azhar offers predictions about where the technology will lead us, including a shift away from globalization to local economic production of goods and food, a transition to inexpensive renewable energy, and the widespread availability of genomic sequencing and much more personalized and preventative health care. “In short, we are entering an age of abundance,” he writes. “The first period in human history in which energy, food, computation, and many resources will be trivially cheap to produce.” (p. 256)

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