UrsaMajor saidIt occurs to me with our failure to follow up on space exploration and the retirement of important technological milestones like the shuttle and Concorde that we really shouldn't take it for granted that technological achievement cannot be easily lost.
The United States is a perfect example of this. For most Americans the Bible is their primary source of knowledge, wisdom, and what they think passes for science.
Genuine books of science are shunned, and indeed would be burned if the fundamentalists had their way. The ancient world had the burning of its one great Library of Alexandria -- that scene is repeated all over the US from coast to coast every day. More than half of Americans now reject evolution for the creationist view that says the Earth is barely 5000 years old, along with the rest of the Universe.
Take for another example genetic research, which the Republicans under Bush suppressed in the US, because it conflicts with their interpretation of Biblical teachings. Fortunately for humanity the research continued in other countries, so that now the US is increasingly considered a backward nation in the field of medical advances. Oh, we spend a lot, the most expensive costs in the world actually, but we just spin our wheels. If the Bible doesn't teach it, we don't allow it.
Fortunately only the US and Muslim countries are afflicted with this religious fanaticism. So long as the enlightened countries of the world can continue, other Libraries of Alexandria will survive the destruction of the ones in the US.