The rate of new knowledge generated since I was a kid three decades ago has been phenomenal and probably unmatched in any previous period in history to date. Both in new scientific knowledge and in technological advances, the human race has made much progress.
The last 30-year-period traversing the turn of the 21st century has witnessed the rise of the computer, and birth and growth of the internet for the masses. This transition into the digital age marks a monumental milestone in human history. These and other technological tools will likely cause new knowledge generation to further increase exponentially in the next few centuries.
I’m thinking that an extended period of peace in most of the world may have been one important factor that has contributed to such prosperity, as it has been 65 years since the last world war. The widespread use and availability of electricity from inventors such as Thomas Edison and Nicola Tesla (who incidentally did work for and thus learn from Edison – more on this in the post Achieving Your Full Potential: Breadth and Depth for Variety and Specialization in Life) since the 19th century is also a key catalyst enabling humans to literally aim for the stars and reach the moon. Another important factor may be the high world population recently compared to previous times in world history, as more people means that there is generally more being accomplished.