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The Technium What comes after the Internet? What is bigger than the web?
Social construction of technology (also referred to as SCOT ) is a theory within the field of Science and Technology Studies . Advocates of SCOT—that is, social constructivists -- argue that technology does not determine human action, but that rather, human action shapes technology. They also argue that the ways a technology is used cannot be understood without understanding how that technology is embedded in its social context. SCOT is a response to technological determinism and is sometimes known as technological constructivism.
Technological determinism is a reductionist theory that presumes that a society's technology drives the development of its social structure and cultural values. The term is believed to have been coined by Thorstein Veblen (1857–1929), an American sociologist. The most radical technological determinist in the United States in the twentieth century was most likely Clarence Ayres who was a follower of Thorstein Veblen and John Dewey . William Ogburn was also known for his radical technological determinism. [ edit ] Origin
One part of Freeciv ’s technology tree. Note the complex dependencies between technologies. In strategy computer games , the technology tree or tech tree is a hierarchical visual representation of the possible sequences of upgrades a player can take, by means of research . The diagram is tree-shaped in the sense that it branches at certain intervals, allowing the player to choose one sequence or another. [ 1 ] Typically, at the beginning of a session of a strategy game, a player may only have a few options for technologies to research. Each technology that a player researches will open up more options, but may or may not, depending on the computer game the player is playing, close off the paths to other options. The tech tree is the representation of all possible paths of research a player can take.
There are a number of theories attempting to address technology , which tend to be associated with the disciplines of science and technology studies (STS) and communication studies . Most generally, the theories attempt to address the relationship between technology and society and prompt questions about agency , determinism/autonomy , and teleonomy . If forced, one might categorize them into social and group theories.
Technological convergence is the tendency for different technological systems to evolve toward performing similar tasks. Convergence can refer to previously separate technologies such as voice (and telephony features), data (and productivity applications), and video that now share resources and interact with each other synergistically. The rise of digital communication in the late 20th century has made it possible for media organizations (or individuals) to deliver text, audio, and video material over the same wired, wireless, or fiber-optic connections. At the same time, it inspired some media organizations to explore multimedia delivery of information.
+ Author Affiliations The past decade has brought advanced information technologies, which include electronic messaging systems, executive information systems, collaborative systems, group decision support systems, and other technologies that use sophisticated information management to enable multiparty participation in organization activities. Developers and users of these systems hold high hopes for their potential to change organizations for the better, but actual changes often do not occur, or occur inconsistently. We propose adaptive structuration theory (AST) as a viable approach for studying the role of advanced information technologies in organization change. AST examines the change process from two vantage points: (1) the types of structures that are provided by advanced technologies, and (2) the structures that actually emerge in human action as people interact with these technologies.
Deindividuation is a concept in social psychology that is generally thought of as the losing of self-awareness [ 1 ] in groups , although this is a matter of contention (see below ). Sociologists also study the phenomenon of deindividuation, but the level of analysis is somewhat different. For the social psychologist, the level of analysis is the individual in the context of a social situation.
Technology assessment ( TA , German Technikfolgenabschätzung , French évaluation des choix scientifiques et technologiques ) is a scientific, interactive, and communicative process that aims to contribute to the formation of public and political opinion on societal aspects of science and technology. [ 1 ] [ edit ] General description Note : This section/article is currently under revision as it does not live up to the current state of TA knowledge and practice. See the related discussion here .
According to Robin A. Williams and David Edge (1996), "Central to Social Shaping of Technology' (SST) is the concept that there are `choices' (though not necessarily conscious choices) inherent in both the design of individual artifacts and systems, and in the direction or trajectory of innovation programs." If technology does not emerge from the unfolding of a predetermined logic or a single determinant, then innovation is a 'garden of forking paths'. Different routes are available, potentially leading to different technological outcomes. Significantly, these choices could have differing implications for society and for particular social groups.
The term high tech refers to technology that is at the cutting edge : the most advanced technology available. It is often used in reference to micro-electronics, rather than other technologies. The adjective form is hyphenated: high-tech or high-technology . (There is also an architectural style known as high tech .)
The history of science and technology ( HST ) is a field of history which examines how humanity's understanding of the natural world (science) and ability to manipulate it (technology) have changed over the centuries. This academic discipline also studies the cultural, economic, and political impacts of scientific innovation. Histories of science were originally written by practicing and retired scientists, starting primarily with William Whewell , as a way to communicate the virtues of science to the public. In the early 1930s, after a famous paper given by the Soviet historian Boris Hessen , was focused into looking at the ways in which scientific practices were allied with the needs and motivations of their context.
E-Science (or eScience ) is computationally intensive science that is carried out in highly distributed network environments, or science that uses immense data sets that require grid computing ; the term sometimes includes technologies that enable distributed collaboration, such as the Access Grid . The term was created by John Taylor , the Director General of the United Kingdom's Office of Science and Technology in 1999 and was used to describe a large funding initiative starting in November 2000. E-Sciences include particle physics, bio-informatics , earth sciences and social simulations . Particle physics has a well developed e-Science infrastructure in particular because of its need for adequate computing facilities for the analysis of results and storage of data originating from the CERN Large Hadron Collider , which started taking data in 2009. [ edit ] Characteristics and examples
Cybermethodology is a newly emergent field that focuses on the creative development and use of computational and technological research methodologies for the analysis of next-generation data sources such as the Internet. The first formal academic program in Cybermethodology [ 1 ] is being developed by the University of California, Los Angeles . [ edit ] Background Cybermethodology is an outgrowth of two relatively new academic fields. The first is Technology and society . This field focuses on the impact of research and innovation on society, and related policy issues. [ 2 ] Many universities, including Berkeley, Cornell, MIT and Stanford offer degrees and/or programs of study in this and related fields.
Appropriate technology is an ideological movement (and its manifestations) originally articulated as "intermediate technology" by the economist Dr. Ernst Friedrich "Fritz" Schumacher in his influential work, Small is Beautiful . Though the nuances of appropriate technology vary between fields and applications, it is generally recognized as encompassing technological choice and application that is small-scale, decentralized , labor-intensive , energy-efficient, environmentally sound , and locally controlled. [ 1 ] Both Schumacher and many modern-day proponents of appropriate technology also emphasize the technology as people-centered. [ 2 ]