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The evolution of technology


16 April 2016, 18:52

The evolution of technology


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A new species appears in the world unnoticed.

Its appearance seems to come from what already exists, and this borrowing seems to testify to the inventive inertia of the Designer. At the beginning, there is not much indication that this upheaval in its inner organization, to which a species will owe its later development, has in fact already taken place. The first specimens are usually small; they also sport a number of primitive features, as if their birth had been hurried and fraught with uncertainty. For a period of time, they vegetate in a semisecretive state, barely managing to compete with the established species—which are already optimally adapted to the tasks of the world. Then, eventually, prompted by the change to the general equilibrium resulting from the seemingly insignificant transformations in the environment (whereby a species’s environment includes not only the geological world but also all the other species vegetating in it), a new kind of expansion takes off. Entering the already occupied territories, a species openly shows its lead over its competitors in the struggle for life. When it enters an empty unconquered space, it bursts into evolutionary radiation, which in one go initiates the emergence of a whole range of variations. In these variations, the disappearance of the remnants of primitivism in a species is accompanied by the emergence of new systemic solutions that are ever more bravely dominating its outer appearance and its new functions. This is the route a species takes to reach its developmental peak. Through the process, it gives a name to the whole epoch. The period of rule on land, in the sea, or in the air lasts a long time. Then a homeostatic equilibrium is eventually disturbed once again—yet this still does not signal defeat. The evolutionary dynamics of a species gains some hitherto unobserved new traits. In its core branch, the specimens are getting bigger, as if gigantism was to provide protection against the threat. Evolutionary radiations start to take place again, this time often marked by hyperspecialization.


The lateral branches attempt to penetrate into environments in which competition is comparatively weaker. From time to time, that latter maneuver culminates in success. Then, when all the traces of the giants—whose emergence was a defense strategy on the part of the core species against its extinction—have disappeared, when all the simultaneous efforts to the contrary have also failed (as some evolutionary lines promptly head toward dwarfism), the descendants of the lateral branch, having happily encountered propitious conditions inside the peripheral
area of their competition, continue their existence almost without change. In this way, they serve as the last proof of the primeval abundance and power of a species.

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