The Decade of the Battery

Noah Smith declares this the decade of the battery.

These two years have seen small battery-powered drones utterly change the way wars are fought. They have seen battery storage become a common complement to solar, solving almost all of solar’s intermittency problem and drawing huge amounts of investment worldwide.

Batteries have powered the sudden meteoric rise of China’s car industry, which went from an also-ran to a juggernaut that suddenly threatens to dominate the entire global auto market. AI is certainly magical and holds incredible potential, but in just a couple of years, batteries have begun to transform human energy supply, war, transportation, and geopolitical dominance.

Also, it’s quickly becoming apparent that AI and batteries are, in many ways, perfectly complementary technologies. Drones are human-piloted now, but autonomous AI-operated drone swarms are coming, and they are going to change war and the balance of power yet again. AI promises to turn robotics from a niche type of machine tool into a ubiquitous feature of our world. The rise of autonomous machines will be — must be — battery-powered.

See the whole analysis in the post here.


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