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Technology is the usage and knowledge of tools, techniques and crafts, or systems or methods of organization, or is a material product (such as clothing) of these things. The word technology comes from the Greek technología — téchnē 'craft' and -logía- the study of something, or the branch of knowledge of a discipline. The term can either be applied generally or to specific areas for example "construction technology", "medical technology", or "state-of-the-art technology".
Technology affects the humanity significantly. The human’s usage of technology was begun with the conversion of natural resources into simple tools. The prehistorical discovery of fire increased the available sources of food. The invention of wheel helped humans in travelling. Recent technological developments such as printing press, telephone and the Internet have lessened physical barriers in communication and allowed humans to interact freely on a global scale. However not all technology has been used for peaceful purposes; the development of weapons of ever-increasing destructive power has progressed throughout history from clubs to nuclear weapons.
Technology has affected society and its surroundings in a number of ways. Many technological processes produce unwanted by-products known as pollution and deplete natural resources, to the detriment of the Earth and its environment. Various implementations of technology influence the values of the society and new technology often raises new ethical questions.
Philosophers debate about the present and future use of technology in the society solving whether technology improves human conditions or worsens them. Neo-Luddism, anarcho-primitivism, and similar movements criticize the pervasiveness of technology in the modern world explaining that it harms the environment and alienates people; on the contrary, transhumanism and techno-progressivism view the technological progress as beneficial to the society and human conditions.
The invention of printing press made it possible for scientists and politicians to share information with ease leading to the Age of Enlightenment. Here technology can be regarded as cultural force.
The use of the term technology has changed significantly over the last 200 years. Before the 20th century the term was uncommon in English and usually referred to as the description or study of the useful arts. Further the concept of technology was associated with the world of science, big business, and engineering. In 1937 American sociologist Read Bain wrote that "technology includes all tools, machines, utensil, weapons, instruments, housing, clothing, communicating and transporting devices and the skills by which we produce and use them." Bain's definition remains common among scholars today, especially social scientists. But equally prominent is the definition of technology as applied science, especially among scientists and engineers, although most social scientists who study technology reject this definition.
Dictionaries and scholars have offered a variety of definitions. The Merriam-Webster dictionary offers a definition of the term: "the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area" and "a capability given by the practical application of knowledge". Ursula Franklin in her 1989 "Real World of Technology" lecture gave another definition of the concept; it is "practice, the way we do things around here". The term is often used to imply a specific field of technology, or to refer to high technology or just consumer electronics, rather than technology as a whole.
Technology can be most broadly defined as the entity both material and immaterial created by the application of mental and physical effort in order to achieve some value. In this usage, technology refers to tools and machines that may be used to solve real-world problems. It is a far-reaching term that may include simple tools such as a wooden spoon or more complex machines, such as a space station or particle accelerator.
The word "technology" can also be used to refer to a collection of techniques. In this context, it is the current state of humanity's knowledge of how to combine resources to produce desired products, to solve problems, fulfill needs, or satisfy wants; it includes technical methods, skills, processes, techniques, tools and raw materials. When combined with another term, such as "medical technology" or "space technology", it refers to the state of the respective field's knowledge and tools. "State-of-the-art technology" refers to the high technology available to humanity in any field.
Technology can be viewed as an activity that forms or changes culture. Additionally technology is the application of math, science and the arts for the benefit of life as it is known. Technology not only enhances culture in a creative way; technology can also help to facilitate political oppressions and war via tools such as guns. As a cultural activity technology predates both science and engineering, each of which formalizes some aspects of technological endeavor.
Exercise 9. Master the active vocabulary.
Conversion – превращение, изменение
To interact- взаимодействовать
Club - дубинка
To deplete – истощать, исчерпывать
To the detriment of the Earth – в ущерб земле
Implement – орудие, инструмент
Pervasive – проникающий, распространяющийся повсюду
To alienate – отчуждать
Utensil – посуда, утварь
prominent – впадающийся.
To reject – отвергать
To imply – подразумевать, намекать
Entity – сущность
Accelerator – ускоритель
Benefit – польза
To enhance – повышать, увеличивать
To facilitate – облегчать
Endeavor –пытаться; попытка, старание
Exercise 10. Find the words with similar meanings:
to affect aim
damage to influence
to make easier theory
scientist to cover
to combine to facilitate
Exercise 11. Write down 5 your own sentences using words and word combinations from Ex-s 1 ,3.
Exercise 12. Answer the following questions:
1. What is the difference between the terms «technology» and «science»?
2. What is the origin of the term technology?
3. How does technology affect the humanity?
4. What are the definitions of the term «technology»?
5. Can technology be viewed as an activity that forms or changes culture? Why?
Exercise 13. Give a latter of the correct ending for each sentence:
1. Recent technological developments such as printing press, telephone and the Internet…
a. produce unwanted byproducts and deplete natural resources.
b. solve whether technology improves human conditions or worsens them.
c. have lessened physical barriers in communications and allowed to interact freely on a global scale.
2. Some movements criticize the pervasiveness of technology in the modern world…
a. referring to high technology or just consumer electronics, rather than technology as a whole.
b. explaining that it harms the environment and alienates people.
c. explaining that technological progress is beneficial to the society and human conditions.
3. The Merriam-Webster dictionary offers a definition of the term:
a. «practice, the way we do things around here».
b. it is the current state of humanity ’s knowledge of how to combine resources to produce desired products.
c. «the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area».
Exercise 14. Give the numbers of the statements that are true according to the text:
1. The word «technology» can also be used to refer to a collection of techniques.
2. Technology not only enhances culture in a creative way; technology also helps to facilitate political oppressions.
3. Technology is the usage and knowledge of tools, techniques and crafts, or systems or method of organizations.
4. The invention of printing press made it possible for scientists and politicians to share information.
5. Technology refers to tools and machines that may be used to solve real-world problems.
6. When combined with another term, such as «medical technology» or «space technology», it refers to the state of the respective field’s knowledge and tools.
7. Technology affects the humanity significantly.
Exercise 15. Render the text.