What If Computers Did NOT Evolve The Way It Did?
There are thousands of ways through which we could have built a computer… quite literally. Did humans choose the wrong one?
I got this thought while I wasting time. And finally, after some research, I came up with the following theory/idea. What if the computers were not 0s and 1s? How would our computers look then? And it does not end there. Let’s dig the rabbit hole a bit deeper.
When Do You Get A Binary System?
A mechanism could be a binary system if there are only 2 possible outcomes. It might sound simple, but it’s difficult to achieve in the present analog world, where most of the outcome possibilities are either random or more than two.
What if we evolved using magnets as the source of binary system? I mean… It’s possible considering that even they are bipolar just like electricity. It’s just that WE have not found a way to do so.
What We did do?
We, humans, have managed to use “electricity” as the main objective of the binary system. And it’s a choice WE have made. We could have used countless more ones like magnetism, vectors(of an object), etc. I mean… we are trying to use the quantum spin of electrons and other quantified objects as a binary system, but it’s going to take some more decades to even consider it useful.
Why didn’t we discover the other ones?
The best reason I can come up with is probably that we just went with the flow. Once some of the scientists came up with methods to be more digital using electricity, we accepted it and just went with it, therefore creating everything we have right now, including the device which I’m typing from and which you are reading with.
And don’t get me wrong though I think it’s a good thing that we have used just one form of the binary system. It would be chaos if Apple uses magnets and Microsoft uses electricity… I hope you get my point.
Is It A Problem?
Here’s the thing. we just could not explore enough more in the digital world, other than electricity(even now, the tech has moved so much towards digital, that analog is almost not used at all for complex calculations, although we do use analog in a few circumstances). This is the reason why everything uses electricity. Answering the question, no. Of course, it’s not a problem in any way. We pollute the air generating electricity, but if we were using something else, I’m sure we would have wasted some form of energy/resource.
What If We Went Full Analog?
If the world did not turn towards digital and rather continued increasing the efficiency and complexity of an analog computer, we probably would have had larger computers. And when I say large, I mean our laptops would probably look more like a huge box the size of a room. BUT, the speed and performance of the computer would be quite instantaneous on any heavy load given.
How Far Have We Gone?
Very ironically, the rate of development of analog computer drastically went down from almost the the same time digital computers came in
The above computer is the farthest we have gone in analog computers. It is used to calculate any differential, algebraic equation. It was used extensively during the 1940s. But then, in 1945, England had the first digital computer along with other computers like ENIAC invented around the same time. It’s not a coincidence that the improvement of analog almost stopped from then on.
Here’s What I Think
It’s just my opinion though. Feel free to correct, change or have your own opinions
“IF” there are Aliens…
There is almost no guarantee that they use electricity to power their computers(and btw, it’s about time we agree that aliens exist in the universe. They probably won’t meet us, but that does not mean they don’t exist). They might not even be using a digital computer at all. Maybe they excelled in analog computers.
So no… The computers invented by any other living organisms isolated away from human beings are probably way different not only in the design and the structure but also in the technology itself. Considering this, we might not have a spaceship of an alien look like a donut shape flying thing. I'm gonna look way different than what we could think of(however they feel the most efficient design).
Yeah… The world probably could be way different by now if we had chosen to grow up using analog rather than digital. We also don’t what other lives use technology differently. I’m not talking about the extreme sci-fi laser guns you might see in whatever movies. I’m talking about the core technology itself.
I’ll make more videos on computer science and stuff on my YouTube channel. I’ll also make some tweets over on Twitter. Make sure you stay tuned for that. That’s about it for this article, I’ll meet you in the next one.
You’re Awesome :)