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In essence, it is no doubt that the term technology often puts a smile on a significant number of human faces, right? The world has been greatly transformed by technological evolution. Arguably, a lot of opportunities are on the rise thanks to technology although it comes with its fair share of downs. Primarily, there is a strong belief that technology is yet to clock its peak. Has it? A large section of Tech enthusiasts is for the stand that technology never stagnate thus improving and empowering human lives with the aim of making the world a better place. One word would sufficiently sum up this observation, techno-optimism. Almost equally, a significant section of the techno-pessimists believe that modern technology has reached its sunset years. Many problems have been created than solved by technology, so they say. Unforeseen problems are likely to arise at the expense of technological advancement (Joel). The pessimists hold that human progress lies in technological dependence reduction. More or less, big and radical innovations of the past seemed unstable and dangerous yet were pursued the greater good. Possible risks might have been neglected from the invention of vaccines and antibiotics among others.
Significantly, many people fall somewhere between the two extremes of techno-optimism and techno-pessimism. Hey, where do you lie? Social media as an invention, for instance, has vehemently promoted direct engagement of individuals for various purposes which include but not limited to communication and information, marketing, and advertisements among many others. The same social media has messed up privacy while at the same time relaying a lot of information likely unfiltered (Stephenson). It is overwhelming at times.
Along the line of history, much has already panned out. For instance, there lay an era when the nations like the United States of America were thrilled with the launch of human beings into space (Stephenson). Over the years, a follow up on such indicates a downward trend of such space programs. It is more worrying to the tech-optimists than it is to the techno-pessimists of the inability to match such major achievements of the old years. It is symbolic of society's general failure to get big things handled. The invention of automobiles, airplanes, and the computer are good examples of the same.
The complexity of technology and its advancement in recent years has pushed the hands of engineers and researchers into concentrating on narrow topics of science and technology (Tom ). For example, it is fascinating that a big tech company is likely to employ a large number of persons only to tackle a minute piece of a given problem at hand. Moreover, letting these individuals work towards an agreed common is no walk in the park either. Such is a likely indication that technology has already seen its better days (Stephenson).
On the contrary, the belief that technology has finished its purpose is both dangerous and wrong. Technological advancement has had a dynamic that is far from the usual: it is problem-solving, but in doing so, it creates new and at times unintended sets of problems thus the need for more solutions. For example, historically in the Industrial Revolution of the late 18th century, coal use was the order of the day. Coal was then widely used replacing horses, windmills, and water driven turbines (Stephenson). As much as its use was efficient, it posed challenges to the environment in smog. At the current age, burning of hydrocarbons has been proven bad to the environment. Techno-optimists are hopeful that technological advancement would make renewable forms of energy that are more environmentally friendly.
It is evident that technology is yet to come to an end. In the modern age, scientific research depends on tools and instruments of use such as the computers which come in handy for this cause. For example, in the field of medicine, automated gene sequencing and cell sorting machines are on the use. Astronomers as well need not to be on board a spacecraft in the study of the galaxy (Stephenson). The use of better tools and instruments plus the expert knowledge that the world has acquired need to be protected at all costs while at the same time ensuring its accessibility. Knowledge, for instance, ought to be retrievable by a great section of technology enthusiasts from engineers to scientists.
In conclusion, it is evident that technology is a double-edged sword: it solves a problem or two while creating one. That said, there are numerous questions about techno-pessimism and techno-optimism. Surprisingly, there exists little or no clarity or easy solutions to these. A considerable amount of resources would be put to waste in trying to come up with a framework for technological use and advancement. This piece takes a close look at those issues. One is never sure of the flexibility of the modern world at facing the sets of technological advancement. For example, for regulatory and infrastructural reasons, driverless vehicles may be hard to accommodate. These cars are a step into the future thus cementing the stand that technology still progresses.
Joel, Mokyr. "Technopessimism Is Bunk." 26 July 2013. 11 April 2018.
Stephenson, Neal. "WORLD POLICY." 27 September 2011. World Policy.org. 11 April 2018.
Tom, Ashbrook. "wbur." 19 December 2016. wbur.org. 11 April 2018.
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