Why did the development of technology development differ from one place to another according to Jared Diamond?

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rrteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Diamond discusses this question in Chapter 13. He argues that the development of technology is not the product of sudden inventions by individual geniuses, but rather of a process. Technology development is an autocatalytic process, meaning that it develops faster over time, and the more technology a society has, the more they will be able to develop. So those societies that develop certain technologies first will have a very important head start. Perhaps the most crucial point to Diamond's argument is that agricultural societies develop technology first. Since he has already established that agriculture develops primarily due to geographic factors, it follows that the ultimate factors encouraging the initial development of important technologies are more related to environment and geography than anything inherently different about various peoples. 

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Guns, Germs, and Steel

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