I think you read the quote too fast. It's not claiming anything about physics. It's saying that computer vision is at a very early stage, which you said as well.
I had different quibbles with that quote. 1) Technology advances much faster today than it did in 1700, so it's not as if it will take centuries for computer vision to reach the same stage as physics. 2) The quote assumes a similarity of the technological paths (if there is something like that) of physics and computer vision, which doesn't seem obvious.