If you’re like a lot of people, you might assume that autonomous vehicles (AVs) are some kind of “Jetsons” idea that will take years – if not decades – to play out.
There’s good reason for that…
You see, conventional progress – the kind of advancement ingrained in the minds of most people – is like going for a walk…
You take one step, you advance one step.
After taking 10 steps, you are 10 steps away from where you started.
Pretty simple, right?
Well, exponential progress – the kind taking place in technology labs and businesses RIGHT NOW – radically changes the equation… and radically accelerates the pace of change we see in the world.
Each step is DOUBLE the step before it.
For example, if you make exponential progress while taking a walk, you take one step.
Now double that…
… and your second step is the equivalent of TWO regular steps.
By the time you get to the 10th step, your step is the equivalent 512 regular steps!
And by the time you get to the 20th step, your step is the equivalent of 524,288 steps!
The Tipping Point
Exponential progress is progress that “snowballs”… each step in the advancement is double the one before it.
The first stages of exponential growth aren’t incredible. The growth shown on a chart does not soar upward during the early stages.
As a result, disruptive innovations – like self-driving cars – may strike you as nothing more than a fantasy…
But computing power is advancing at incredible – and accelerating – rates. At the same time, the cost of computing power is plummeting.
But technological change does NOT progress in a straight line.
It happens like this…
There’s a key principle behind this incredible chart.
Start with the “linear” line. It shows us how most people expect technology to change.
But now look at the blue line.
This is what exponential change really looks like.
As you can see, there’s a gap between the degree of change we believe is possible – and what actually happens over time.
When progress reaches the point where disappointment tips to amazement – that’s when a technology really takes off.
It’s called “The Law of Accelerating Returns.”
And it was first observed by Google’s Director of Engineering, Ray Kurzweil.
If you haven’t heard of Ray, PBS called him one of the 16 “revolutionaries who made America.” He’s also been called a “genius” by The Wall Street Journal and “the ultimate thinking machine” by Forbes.
As a result of this law, it’s taking less and less time to generate incredible wealth.
Investors are enjoying the benefits because the time it takes for massive change is getting “compressed.”
These incredible industry shifts used to take 20-plus years to play out.
Now, they are playing out in less than five years.
It’s all thanks to the Law of Accelerating Returns… all thanks to exponential progress.
Investors must get in before the whole world realizes that this is happening with AVs.
Because frankly, that’s the moment when you stand to make the biggest gains.
I refer to that point when disappointment tips to amazement as my “red envelope moment.” Next time, I’ll share what that means (you Netflix fans may be able to guess) and what it tells us about the huge potential to generate wealth in AVs.
P.S. It used to take the typical Fortune 500 company about 20 years on average to reach $1 billion in value. But not anymore.
In 2004, Facebook reached $1 billion in just five years, which was considered incredible. In 2009, Uber hit $1 billion in under three years. And in 2012, virtual reality firm Oculus did it in less than two years.
As you can see, it’s taking less and less time to generate incredible wealth. What once took 20-plus years can happen today in just a few years.
As autonomous vehicles go mainstream, I’m absolutely convinced their adoption will create huge fortunes at incredible rates of speed. If you can claim a small stake in the companies developing this technology now, you could benefit from one of the rarest, most powerful economic forces in history.
I recently “went public” with our exhaustive, six-month research project and have laid out everything you need to know. You can view our presentation by clicking here.
Note: This is Part 6 of a series on the opportunity in autonomous vehicles. Click here to read Part 7 now.