>>34833>the premise of "constant progress"
I'm confident that scientific advancement will take a life of it's own in this century.
The internet is here to stay, so is so much research; arguably not for media content, which is larger, but when it comes to knowledge the nearly post-scarcity distribution, replication, bandwidth and computer memory is a game changer. To preserve vast amount of knowledge you just need some solid state drives (which are bound to have 100 fold capacity in this century). And that's on a personal level, it's unthinkable that you can destroy all knowledge on earth with anything that falls short from destroying in a single swipe literally all of human civilization.
Then there's the crucial point that knowledge is self-preserving; the preservation of knowledge is in the best interest of the holder, who in turn is greatly benefited by it, giving him an advantage. No matter the war, the victor will preserve its knowledge.
Add to that that transmitting knowledge is easily feasable for the basic fully functional societies, so even in the most post-apocaliptic scenarios of all of the internet ravaged, people will be able to communicate with others across the globe.
Given that the interchange of knowledge is in the parties self-interest, scientific networks between allies will never cease to exist.
Even the most dystopic societies will need workers that can read and write, and think.
So there will never again be an analogue to the library of Alexandria, a place where knowledge is forgoten and can be destroyed. NEVER again. That was a case of non-self-preserving centralised knowledge.
And on top of everything, self-preserving AI is surely to be achieved at some point, we are far from the brink of complete anihilation for some hundreds of years.
At least some of this AI will be tasked with preserving and indexing all this knowledge (which hopefully will make it's application more efficient, it's a headache looking through scientific papers, and so much knowledge never lives up to its potential because of misses due to human limitations).
Empires will rise and fall as they always did.
Civilization might be utterly ravaged by nuclear holocausts.
But the knowledge about how to build, and destroy, civilizations will be preserved past the last standing person. Singularity achieved and all that shit.