If the scientific test of a scientific theory is accepted by the community of men and women who are called scientists, does that mean that anything is acceptable as long as enough of the right people agree with it? Does that mean there is no such thing as scientific truth? How, if at all, does science differ from politics, art, or religion, in that case?
Baase states that it is not just technology that changes so quickly, but also the impacts which they have upon society. Do you agree? How does that align with the assertion in the lecture that we are now living in a third great technological transformation called the Knowledge Revolution? Have computers truly changed our lives so much that we can call this a revolution like the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century?
week 2 discussion
In what way (or ways) is the current Knowledge Revolution a child of the Industrial Revolution? Is this a new revolution or simply an extension of the 18th-century revolution? Given the history, is it perhaps more appropriate to call the current revolution a Communications Revolution?
Why do the soft technologies open more opportunities for women? To what extent have these technologies impacted the perceptions of men’s and women’s roles in the economy, within marriage, and in society as a whole?
The availability and even dependence upon computer technology is brought to task by Baase in Chapter 8. What are some of the ways that the ease and simplicity of our current technological devices also lead us at times to surrogate our daily responsibilities onto these devices? Please include examples, and be as specific as possible.
A kind of genetic engineering happens in nature, with naturally occurring mutations and the dominance of certain strains. What is different about today’s processes? What makes them potentially dangerous? What should we consider naturaland what is artificial?
We normally think of the arts as very different from technologies in spite of the fact that art (with perhaps a few exceptions) is practiced with the help of technology. This practice creates interdependence between technology and art. To what extent does art respond to, or is shaped by, the technology that enables it? To what extent have advanced and accessible digital technologies, such as websites, digital photography, and YouTube, changed the relationship between art and technology? Are these technologies reshaping our attitudes toward artists?
Baase discusses freedom of speech and censorship in light of the modern digital landscape, especially given the dubious ways in which technology can sometimes be utilized. Superior expertise about how technologies work does not guarantee superior judgment about how they should be used, regulated, or governed. As technology becomes more sophisticated, how can citizens and political leaders judge and understand whether a given technology offers great perils or great promises? When great technological projects, such as venturing farther into the galaxy or developing new life-extending medicines, are proposed, how should government officials make decisions about how tax dollars should be spent?week 6
Why do we pursue technologies, such as those associated with virtual reality? Going back to one of our definitions of technology, what problem are we trying to solve? What are the risks associated with these technologies?
Given the current state of energy use, which continues to grow exponentially in such countries as China and India, what measures can the United States and other Western countries take to produce more fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly fuels? What other sources of energy could be developed to solve the energy crisis? What can the individual do to alleviate this crisis?
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