The Evolving Global Brain

The integration of humanity into a single interconnected system began tens of thousands of years ago with the emergence of symbolic language. Whereas other creatures learn largely from their own experience, language allowed human beings to share their experience and so learn from each other. From this moment on we began evolving into a single interconnected system.

At first the connections between us were tenuous. Limited to speech alone, ideas could not travel very far. Writing allowed us to record ideas in a more reliable form, and hand them down to others. And the invention of paper meant we could take our ideas and share them with others in distant lands.

Printing made it possible to reproduce the written word more efficiently. The telephone allowed us to speak to people far away. Radio gave one person the ability to broadcast ideas to many others. And now computers and telecommunications have taken us another step forward, linking humanity together in a global information network.

Billions of messages are continually shuttling back and forth, at the speed of light, linking the minds of humanity together, into a single network of global communication—a global brain.

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