In the age of acceleration, cities like Fresno are being driven by more advanced technology, globalization and climate change, requiring residents to renew their focus on life-long learning, family and community.

During a visit to Fresno, Thomas L. Friedman, best-selling author and Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The New York Times shared his views with a crowd of 1,400 at the Save Mart Center last Tuesday.

Friedman came to Fresno to speak about his newest book, “Thank You for Being Late: An Optimist’s Guide to Thriving in the Age of Acceleration.”

Friedman argues in his book that there are three major forces affecting us: “Market, Mother Nature and Moore’s Law.”

“The market is digital globalization – not your grandfather’s globalization, which is containers on ships and airplanes – the way everything is being digitized and globalized,” Friedman said.

“Mother Nature [includes] climate change, biodiversity loss and population growth,” he said. “Moore’s Law is the speed and power of microchips, which will double every 24 months.” Friedman calls Moore’s Law the driver of all technology.

“The three together, I think, are what are shaping more things in more ways,” Friedman said. “More technology drives more globalization, and more globalization drives more climate issues and more solutions to all these problems at the same time.”

So what does this mean for Fresno?

With Fresno’s top exports, agricultural crops, being sent all over the world Friedman believes globalization is a key factor for Fresno and ties in closely with his book.

Friedman says his books also address the importance of good parenting, good teaching, good spiritual leadership and healthy communities – things that anchor people in the world.

As Fresno moves forward with these trends of technology, globalization and climate change, Friedman suggests that Fresnans should move forward with life-long learning and a renewed focus on family values.

“Being a life-long learner becomes much more vitally necessary in the age of acceleration,” he said. “You have to learn, relearn and retool yourself so much more often, and faster.”

Contact Drew Phelps

Phone: 559-440-8321 / e-mail

This story was not subject to the approval of Granville Homes.

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