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Enlightenment

+ - How Uses, Not Innovations, Drive Human Technology

Submitted by Strudelkugel
Strudelkugel (594414) writes "The NewYorker magazine has book review describing our common misunderstanding of the value of technology and its ultimate use: "The way we think about technology tends to elide the older things, even though the texture of our lives would be unrecognizable without them. And when we do consider technology in historical terms we customarily see it as a driving force of progress: every so often, it seems, an innovation — the steam engine, electricity, computers — brings a new age into being. In "The Shock of the Old: Technology and Global History Since 1900", by David Edgerton, a well-known British historian of modern military and industrial technology, offers a vigorous assault on this narrative. He thinks that traditional ways of understanding technology, technological change, and the role of technology in our lives, have been severely distorted by what he calls "the innovation-centric account" of technology." This is also the first /. topic I know of that is linked to the NewYorker magazine!"
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How Uses, Not Innovations, Drive Human Technology

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Whenever a system becomes completely defined, some damn fool discovers something which either abolishes the system or expands it beyond recognition.

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