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Today and throughout history, technology influences and is influenced by such societal issues/factors as economics, values, ethics, institutions, groups, the environment, government, among others. The discipline studying the impacts of science, technology, and society and vice versa is called Science and technology in society. While technology contributes to economic development and human prosperity, it can also have negative impacts like pollution or resource depletion, or cause social harms like technological unemployment caused by automation.

  • Technology’s central role in our lives has drawn concerns and backlash.
  • Medical technology is technology that serves the purpose of diagnosing, treating, or preventing disease.
  • Additionally, children could contribute labor to the raising of crops more readily than they could participate in hunter-gatherer activities.
  • This view was supplanted after discovering evidence of tool use among chimpanzees and other primates, dolphins, and crows.

This can include things like MRI scanners, which take images of the inside of the human body; ventilators, which breathe for people; or even simply drugs and medicines that people take to make them better. It might sound like something from a sci-fi show, or something that has to run on electricity. Technology makes us think of the very complex, but energy doesn’t have to be complex. While technology companies claim to be able to prevent violence, there’s little proof that surveillance can actually protect students. The region historically lands around the top 10 metropolitan areas for startup funding, thanks to dual pillars of life science firms and technology companies. Its main defense may be what some call its “Silicon Shield” — its powerful semiconductor industry.

Automation had resulted in a need for fewer workers, a process known as technological unemployment. Some segments of the 1960s hippie counterculture grew to dislike urban living and developed a preference for locally autonomous, sustainable, and decentralized technology, termed appropriate technology. Since the 1970s, technology’s impact on the environment has been criticized, leading to a surge in investment in solar, wind, and other forms of clean energy. The Renaissance era produced many innovations, including the printing press . Technology became increasingly influenced by science, beginning a cycle of mutual advancement.

Medical technology is another type, and includes ventilators, medication, and MRIs. Communication technology is the third type, and includes all types of tools used to communicate, from telegrams to telephones. Electronic technology includes technology that requires electricity, from dishwashers to blenders to various electronic devices. Finally, industrial and manufacturing technologies advance ways of producing objects used by people around the world.

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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 has affected society and its surroundings in a number of ways. In many societies, technology has helped develop more advanced economies (including today’s global economy) and has allowed the rise of a leisure class.

The prehistorical discovery of the ability to control fire increased the available sources of food and the invention of the wheel helped humans in travelling in and controlling their environment. Recent technological developments, including the printing press, the telephone, and the Internet, have lessened physical barriers to communication and allowed humans to interact 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.

The humanities philosophy of technology is concerned with the “meaning of technology for, and its impact on, society and culture.” In physics, the discovery of nuclear fission in the Atomic Age led to both nuclear weapons and nuclear power. Computers were invented and later shifted from analog to digital in the Digital Revolution. Information technology, particularly optical fiber and optical amplifiers led to the birth of the Internet, which ushered in the Information Age.