2570
BC

Before the Invention of Progress

If you had been born in Egypt in 2570 B.C., when Khufu was reigning and the Great Pyramid of Giza was being built, you would have turned 20 in 2550 B.C. From that vantage point, if you had tried to look 50 years ahead to what the world would be like in the year 2500 B.C., you would have expected very little change. And you would have been correct. The years passed and almost nothing changed. There is no hieroglyph for the word “progress” because the very idea of progress didn’t exist.

However, if you were born in 1991, turned 20 in 2011, and from that vantage point tried to look ahead 50 years to 2061, you would suppose that everything is going to change. And you would be right. Everything is about to change.

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