As Terence Tao shows in this speach, mathematics is how humanity solves the universe. This idea can be generalized to making those technologies possible that he points out in the lecture. I'm sure he knows this!
I like this speach because he points out that mathematics is invented to deal with things we can't do directly. We didn't figure out the solar system by building a space rocket first and rocketing off to space, look back and notice the planets go around the sun instead of the other way around. This is part of what I'm saying on this blog.