Explore BrainMass

The definition of technology

What is the definition of technology and how has the definition changed overtime?

Solution Preview

The definition of technology is rather broad. It means the use and knowledge of tools and crafts, and the way either animals or humans control and adapt those tools. It is not so much that the definition of technology has changed, as it is that technology itself has changed - the defining characteristics are the same, it is just the tools that are different.

In prehistory, for instance, technology began with the conversion of natural resources into tools (simple stone tools, for example). The use and control of fire, though, allowed more food and safety; the invention of the wheel helped travel and commerce, and so on. Technology affects culture and society in a number of ways - it has allowed humans to progress to an advanced state of economic and "technological" development (more on that below), has allowed the rise of a leisure class, but has also produced untold suffering, weapons of mass destruction, pollution, and perhaps even the beginnings of the destruction of our own planet.

Some argue about whether technology is "good" or "bad" - but truely, it is neither. It simply is a tool - and it is how the tool is used that forms a moral argument. As society changes, so does technology. As society progresses, typically technology becomes more complex - changes in human productivity and ability to control the environment. For example, in Ancient ...

Solution Summary

The definition of technology is emphasized.