An Inquiry Into The Question Of How Technology Has Expanded Or Limited The Acquisition Of Knowledge

1251 words - 5 pages

The advent of technology in the modern era has caused a number of irreversible and dramatic changes to the daily pattern of our lives. Technology, however, is sometimes misrepresented. It is commonly thought of as a piece of advanced equipment in a laboratory or a giant supercomputer that fills the room. Actually, those things are the result of technology and not technology itself. Technology is a specialized form of knowledge that is used by industry. Once we know what technology is, we can now talk about it properly. Technology has allowed us to see over the horizon and thus has expanded the acquisition of knowledge.There are four ways of knowing. All four of these ways of knowing have been expanded by technology. Reason and Logic have been expanded by the advent of the scientific calculator. This instrument has shortened the time necessary to compute advanced functions, i.e. Trigonometric, Polynomial and statistical analysis, and allowed that time to be applied to the discovery of new mathematical and scientific theorems. Other people claim that calculators cause more harm than good because they are used increasingly to do simple addition and multiplication. Rather than figuring it out in their head they simply plug it into their calculator, which, if done repeatedly, causes the user to lose math speed furthering their dependence on calculators to do their simple math. Technology also expands the acquisition of knowledge through language. A personal example is when my mother purchased a SAT review program for the computer that drilled math and English to help me bring up my score on the test. This program allowed me to practice sample math problems and use vocabulary "flash cards" in order to increase my knowledge and improve my score. The utilization of technology and its by-products have required the invention of new jargon, lingo and complete computer programming languages. The most affected of the four ways of knowledge is perception. Technological products like the Hubble Space Telescope have vastly expanded our knowledge of the local stars and the stars that could not be seen on earth due to atmospheric distortion. The least affected way of knowing is emotion. Emotion is difficult to expand because of its nature. Some claim that emotion is limited by technology through the impersonal communication of e-mail, chat rooms and faxes. They claim it isolates people and forces them to rely on machines to do their work for them. I disagree because even through those sterile lines of communication there have been ways to express emotion through symbols like :) and :(. There has also been a renewal of interest in emotion altering technology such as aromatherapy and relaxing music. Computers and other means of communication are aids to society and their benefits far outweigh their downfalls. These tools allow the user to use their time more efficiently and not waste it on slower, more traditional methods.The major area of knowing that technology...

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