According to Chapter 13 in Guns, Germs and Steel, why did technology development differ from one place to another?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In this chapter, Diamond lists three factors that determine how much technology a given area will have.  He says that the differences that we observe between the various continents are caused by these factors.  The factors are:

  • Onset of food production.  The sooner a place got agriculture, the more developed its technology will be.
  • Barriers to diffusion.  Much technology is acquired by borrowing from other cultures.  The easier it is for technology to diffuse from place to place in a given area, the more technology societies in that area will have.
  • Human population size.  The more people there are, the more potential inventors there are.

Technological development differed from place to place because of these factors.