Science-Based Global Enlightenment in the Quantum-Digital Age (or How to Prevent the Earth from Becoming a Dead Planet)

Author: Hookes, David
Almanac: Evolution:Evolution and Big History: Dimensions, Trends, and Forecasts


The paper argues that if we are to survive as a species there has to be a new enlightenment, of a global nature that reaches the vast majority of humanity. This is in contrast to the Eighteenth century enlightenment which mainly affected a very small social layer, namely the literate middle and upper class elites. The 18C enlightenment was integrally associated with the emergence of the industrial bourgeoisie and their need to understand the forces of nature so as to release the energy contained in matter and so increase the productivity of labour, as well as to understand how to transform matter into more useful forms. This enlightenment was the long-term consequence of the first ICT of the bourgeois era, namely, printing.

The transition from the Descartes-Newton Age to the Quantum-Digital Age can be made possible by the creation of coupled cyclic networks of knowledge and expertise implemented with digital technologies on the Internet that is, modern ICT. These networks will have a local/non-local dialectical structure characteristic of quantum theory-hence the ‘quantum-digital age’ of the title. Digital systems can supply both the communications and the knowledge-processing, as well as educational instrumentation to make an understanding of the laws of nature accessible to broad layers of the global population and thus become a ‘global discourse’. My Physics-is-Fun machine and Playful Learning Matrix is an example of such digital systems.

Quantum physics-based systems can also provide the solar technologies necessary to power the sustainable production systems of the new age. Ein-stein's use of the quantum Planck relationship, E=hf, to explain the photo-electric effect, rather than his E=mc2, is the key to the energy systems of the Quantum-Digital age. Each village or community can have its solar energy plant to provide the power for water pumping, education, and medical facili-ties. By these means it will be possible to produce an environmentally and economically sustainable world.

Keywords:climate, solar, quantum, Cartesian, Newtonian, agroecology, capitalism, binary, digital, genetic, enlightenment, global, planet, science, education.