Role of Science/Technology in the Economy

Economics 5 pages (1375 words)

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In the face of recent population decreases and increased dependence ratios, many observers have questioned whether technical advancement can continue to move the economy ahead (Gordon, 2016). According to the organization, the low-hanging fruit has virtually been plucked, and future progress would be extremely difficult (Bloom et al. 2017). Others claim that science allows us to build ever-higher ladders in an attempt to advance ever-higher-hanging fruit. Based on rapidly rising scientific findings, proponents of this approach say that technological developments have the potential to revolutionize living in the foreseeable future as radically as they did in the century and a half preceding the US Civil War.

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Researchers' access to technology has influenced scientific progress in today's society. A combination of improved microscopy and improved lab operations enabled the germ theory, unquestionably one of the world's greatest achievements. Over the twentieth century, many examples illustrating the impact of better technology and scientific techniques expanded rapidly. X-ray crystallography is one of contemporary science's greatest heroes. Many biological compounds, including vitamins, medicines, and proteins, have been studied to determine their structure and function. The discovery of the DNA molecule's sequence is probably its best-known use, although it has also been engaged in 29 Nobel Prize-winning studies.

Most technical innovations come from industrialized countries with the requisite means and institutions to promote and finance them. People in these industrialized countries have significantly better living standards than those in undeveloped countries. More employment is created as a result of technological improvements in these countries. Developing countries import commodities and services from wealthier countries. It also causes challenges since technology goods and services render previous technologies in emerging nations outdated, resulting in the loss of jobs. As a result of this tendency, jobs are being created in rich countries while employees are lost in developing nations. The developed countries, therefore, tend to develop more.

The microscope is one of the most well-known traditional equipment in use today. It is critical to the worldwide trend toward micromachining, comprehending, and altering the environment on ever-smaller sizes. Scanning tunneling microscopes (STMs) revolutionized nanoscopic research when they were originally produced in the early 1980s. A thermonuclear bomb is to a firecracker what the Betzig-Hell amazingly fluorescence microscope is to Leeuwenhoek's microscope. The Betzig-Hell ultra-resolved fluorescence microscope, whose creators were awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, is similar to Leeuwenhoek's microscope. The ground-breaking Hubble spacecraft will soon be surpassed by the substantially more sophisticated James Webb space telescope in telescopy.

Fast pcs and laser technology are two powerful scientific instruments that have recently become widely available and represent major advances over earlier generations. Of course, both have numerous direct uses in manufacturing both investment and consumer items. The effect of computers on research has expanded far beyond the study of enormous datasets and traditional analytical methods: a new age of data science has come, with powerful mega-data-crunching machines replacing models. Powerful computers use Machine-learning algorithms to identify patterns that human brains could not have imagined. Rather than using frameworks, powerful computers look for patterns and connections (Weinberger, 2017).

On the other hand, Computers can simulate and estimate the solution of devilishly complex equations, allowing scientists to research previously poorly understood morphological and cognitive processes, design new equipment, and simulate statistical formulas of natural processes that defy closed-form solutions. In high-complexity fields, such simulations have generated wholly new "computational" disciplines of inquiry, in which modeling and huge data processing complement each other. Some scientists have long desired such a tool. Still, we won't have the capability to do so on a level that will inevitably affect our technological abilities, and therefore our efficiency and, most likely, economic well-being, until the past decade.

Quantum computing might enhance processing capability in several of these industries by ten. On the other hand, Artificial intelligence has the potential to become the world's most efficient research assistant, even if it will never be the world's finest researcher, despite concerns that it would overtake competent knowledge workers rather than merely routinized employment (Economist 2016).

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Laser technology is a similarly innovative scientific instrument; it has been noted that when the first lasers were invented, the creators felt it was a method "in quest of an application." In the 1980s, however, lasers were already being used to cool microscopic samples to extremely low temperatures, resulting in significant physics breakthroughs. Lasers are employed in a wide range of scientific fields. One of the most important uses of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy is in various sectors that demand an atomic-scale chemical investigation without sample pretreatment. Lidar (light radar) is a laser-based surveying technology used in geology, seismic engineering, remote sensing, and atmospheric physics to create exact three-dimensional pictures.

On the other hand, lasers are motorized devices that may be used to ablate materials to analyze them. There are no sample size constraints or sample preparation processes when using laser ablation to ablate any specimen for examination. Laser interferometers have also been used to see Einstein's anticipated gravity waves, one of the most sought-after discoveries in modern physics.

But there's a lot more. If the twentieth century were the century of physics, according to Freeman Dyson, the twenty-first century would be the century of biology. According to recent advances in molecular biology and genetics, humans' power to affect other living species will be substantially altered. The cost of sequencing genomes has plummeted at a rate that makes Moore's Law appear slow: from $95 million per genome in 2001 to around $1,250 in 2015. Thanks to recent developments in CRISPR Cas9 methods, the concept of changing a base pair in a genomic sequence looks to be highly promising. On the other hand, synthetic biology makes it possible to make organic substances without using live creatures. Even though cell-free protein synthesis has been known for more than a decade, the general public has recognized its actual potential, even though implementation is still years away.

Although Ecclesiastes, a lot is freshly new beneath the sun. If the first two industrial revolutions were propelled by energy, the future might witness revolutionary developments in discovering new materials. Historians have a long history of designating economic epochs after the major raw material used in their production ("the Bronze Age"). Many technical innovations have been unable to be realized in the past due to a lack of resources available to innovators to make their dreams a reality. On the other hand, recent material science breakthroughs have enabled scientists to design innovative synthetics that the environment never intended. Manufactured nanomaterials promise the ability to create materials with custom-ordered hardness properties.

Ai technology, lasers, and genetic modification appear to be general-purpose technologies (GPTs) having a wide range of industrial and scientific uses. Most GPTs, such as machine learning, look to take time to have a large economic impact since they require complementary discoveries and expenditures by definition. They do, however, have the potential to transform the human predicament in several ways.

None of those technical forecasts can be produced with any accuracy scale, and it is unavoidable that some unexpected breakthroughs will emerge. In contrast, others that were promising will fall well short of expectations. However, whether or not technological progress will continue rapidly is not dependent on one method or the other. It is founded on the premise that science and technology may progress together by providing scientific researchers with far more advanced instruments to work with. Some of the gadgets have existed in some form for millennia, while others are completely new concepts with no clear precedents.

Today's high-powered computers, lasers, and a slew of other instruments will usher in technological achievements that Galileo would have not predicted, just as new equipment in the 17th century ushered in the industrial revolution and the era of steam and power. Technology is a clear driver of economic success in most countries. On the one hand, technology creates employment, eliminating them. Unfortunately, employment is mostly created for those with more wealth and destroyed for those who have less. As more technological applications are deployed, such inequalities expand the gap between the wealthy and the poor.

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References

Huang, G., Liu, Z., Van Der Maaten, L., & Weinberger, K. Q. (2017). Densely connected convolutional networks. In Proceedings of the IEEE conference on computer vision and pattern recognition (pp. 4700-4708).

Cowen, T., & Southwood, B. (2019). Is the rate of scientific progress slowing down? Available at SSRN 3822691.

Shields, C. L., Alset, A. E., Boal, N. S., Casey, M. G., Knapp, A. N., Sugarman, J. A., ... & Shields, J. A. (2017). Conjunctival tumors in 5002 cases. Comparative analysis of benign versus malignant counterparts. The 2016 James D. Allen Lecture. American journal of ophthalmology173, 106-133.

Chelliah, J. (2017). Will artificial intelligence usurp white-collar jobs? Human Resource Management International Digest.

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