Have I reached the Douglas Adams Inflection point


Have I reached the Douglas Adams Inflection point (or is modern tech just a bit rubbish)?

The Douglas Adams Inflection Point

  1. Anything that is in the world when you’re born is normal and ordinary and is just a natural part of the way the world works.
  2. Anything that’s invented between when you’re fifteen and thirty-five is new and exciting and revolutionary and you can probably get a career in it.
  3. Anything invented after you’re thirty-five is against the natural order of things.

Source: The Salmon of Doubt, Douglas Adams

The author questions whether he has crossed the last part of the Douglas Adams Inflection Point. He mentions technologies like blockchain and the metaverse as examples of hyped up tech that don't have a clear purpose and also fail to live up to expectations.

While I'm approaching the inflection point, I'm still optimistic about tech and its potential. Revolutionary technology looks less like flying cars and more like 140 characters of text. The future is notoriously hard to predict and so people try to build it using the means available to them.

And while most endeavors will fail, within each failed attempt is a building block for a future attempt that gets to start off a little better off than what has come before.

If anything, technological progress should feel like going against the natural order of things as this is an indicator that we are making discrete units of progress, expanding the boundaries of what is natural. Maybe the Douglas Adams Inflection Point is an indicator that we are still on track.