Bill Gates, The tools of the digital age extend the capacities of our minds

Human beings are not the biggest animals, the strongest or fastest, or the sharpest in sight or smell. We survived and grew successful because of our brains. We learned how to use tools, to build shelter, to invent agriculture, to keep farm animals, to develop civilization and culture, to cure and prevent disease. Our tools and technologies have helped us to shape the environment around us.

I’m a positive person. I believe in progress. I’d much rather be alive today than at any time in history—and not just because in an earlier age my skills wouldn’t have been as valuable and I’d have been a good candidate for an animal’s dinner.

The tools of the Industrial Age extended the capacities of our muscles. The tools of the digital age extend the capacities of our minds. I’m even happier for my children, who will grow up in this new world.

Digital tools extend the abilities that make us unique in the world: the ability to think, the ability to express our thoughts, the ability to work together to act on those thoughts.

I strongly believe that if companies give their employees the power to solve problems, and give them powerful tools to do this with, they will always be amazed at how much creative and independent thinking will appear…