Chat with James Pethokoukis on *Average is Over*

Here is one of several interesting bits:

Well the Brynjolfsson and McAffee book, “Race Against the Machine,” that’s a great book.  It’s influenced my thinking.  I just read their second forthcoming book, “The Second Machine Age.”  They focus more on automation than I do and less on inequality and much less on social issues.  But I think of myself as thinking along the same lines as they do.  But they and I, we differ a lot about the past.  So they don’t think the past has been a great stagnation.  I agree with them a lot about the future, but disagree with them a lot about the past.

Gordon, I disagree with him about the future, but agree with him about the past.  So Gordon, like me, sees a great stagnation.  And he thinks it will never ever end.  I think that’s crazy.  Even if it were true, how would you know?  But I see a lot of areas, not only artificial intelligence, but medicine and genomics, where the advances are not on the table now.  But it’s hard to believe there’s not going to be a lot more coming.  Science is very healthy.  There’re new discoveries all the time. The lags are much longer than we’d like to think, but absolutely progress is not over, and we’re about to see a new wave of progress over the lifetimes of our children.

The full dialog is here.


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