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Mike Bostock

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Peter Diamandis: Abundance is our future VS Paul Gilding: The Earth is full. There cannot be a future of abundance.

Unfortunately for the future presented by Diamandis, there is one absolute unchangeable fact that Gilding mentions and this fact is based on mathematics.

How can you have a future of abundance when the resources of this Earth are finite and decreasing in amount and to that you add a growing population and demand?

Less resources to be shared between more people. How can there be a future of abundance?

Supply and demand says it cannot. Math says it cannot.


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    Mar 24 2012: Resources are finite but not decreasing, just transforming from one state to another. Iron from mines going to junk yards, but still iron. Ice melting to ocean then evaporating to clouds... everything is in a cycle. With technology we will find new ways of re-obtaining the finite resources that we changed from one state to another. Nothing vanishes, just move. That is explained in physics and chemistry although most people forget that basic, universal, principle.

    The world is already in abundance: we produce more food than we need (look at the obesity statistics). We have more cars than we need. More information than we can consume. Energy is already abundant but we waste it with unnecessary heating, cooling, and traveling. The world production (GDP) is growing by 3% per year, on average

    The population is already stabilizing. Growth rate peaked 2.2% in the 1963, and it was 1.1% in 2011. Simply put: the economy grows by 3% per year and the population grows by 1% per year. We have increasing abundance today. Projections are that the population will stop growing in the next 30 to 40 years.

    Should we refute the above numbers? Abundance distribution is a big issue, that may lead to new wars over today's uneven distribution. Global warming is a big issue: how fast new technologies will enable us to stop consuming oil? It will happen eventually (i.e.: solar power, biofuels, wind, etc) but is the warming reversible?

    The pessimist says we are approaching the end of mankind on earth. The optimistic says there are workarounds via technology. But most time both, the pessimist and the optimist, use the wrong arguments. Real threads are how fast and fair we can develop and distribute technology and abundance. In that matter, intellectual property (patents!) is the big stone blocking our future.

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