November 29th, 2014
10:51 PM ET

Are we really living in innovative times?

Fareed speaks with Peter Thiel, a founder of PayPal, an early investor in Facebook, and author of Zero to One, about whether we are overestimating the level of innovation. Watch the full interview on a GPS special on innovation in America, this Sunday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. ET on CNN.

You've been writing for a while that you actually think we may not be living in as innovative times as everybody thinks we are.

Well, it's a two track story on innovation in the last three or four decades, where we've had enormous innovation in the world of computers, Internet, mobile Internet, the world of bits. We've had much less innovation in the world of atoms and energy and food technology, biotech, medicine, space travel, supersonic airplanes...

Right. Or even just airplanes. I mean if you think about it, it takes about the same amount of time to fly from Point A to Point B on the globe as it did five decades ago.

Yes, or probably even slower with the low tech airport security systems we have in place today. And so technology, the idea of technology, has been narrowed. And in many cases today, the word technology means simply information technology. And I do think it would be good for our world if we broadened this again and saw accelerating technological progress across all these frontiers.

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  1. Paul Freda

    While it may take the same time to fly NY to London, it also is about the same cost.
    Since nearly everything costs 10x what it did 50 years ago, that would be
    a 10x improvement in efficiency in the aviation industry.
    I would say that is pretty good !

    January 2, 2015 at 9:47 pm | Reply
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