What is more, this ever-expanding pool of information did not start with humans, but dates back to the beginning of time. “[W]e are born from it, and it is born from us,” he writes gnostically. As such sweeping phrases make clear, adding to economic-growth theory is not the only goal motivating Mr Hidalgo, a statistical physicist who teaches at MIT’s Media Lab and is a pioneer in visualisation tools, which extract meaning from piles of data.
According to Macmillan Dictionary (http://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/british/sweeping), the word "sweeping" means: 1. a sweeping change or development has a major effect 2. not based on specific facts or details and therefore not completely accurate or fair 3. with a wide impressive curved shape
It seems that the word "phrases" here refers to the sentence in the double quotation marks. But how can the word "sweeping" be understood in the context so that the "phrases make clear"? It is confusing because I don't think each of those meanings of "sweeping" can fit in well with the sentence reasonably or logically. Could someone please paraphrase or explain it?
The next puzzling problem: How should I understand the meaning of "adding to economic-growth theory"? The sentence reads rather peculiar because I can't find out what is exactly added to "economic-growth theory". In other words, the object of the verb "add" is missing. In my opinion, the sentence should be modified like this: "adding XXXX(something certain) to economic-growth is not the only goal of Mr Hidalgo ..." Is that right? If that's not correct, could you please tell me what the author intend to tell the readers here?