Draw from the sociotechnical debate to discuss the emergence of two technologies - one developed before 1920 and one after - using two concepts from the module

2139 Words Mar 3rd, 2014 9 Pages
Technologies can be considered as structural constraints. Similar to all structures human beings have created, they can limit or enable human actions. Technology can be defined as the creation, adaptation, usage and comprehension of mostly machines which are known to make life better and assist in solving a problem (Wright, 2008). In addition to that, technology is also used to perform a specific function. The use of technology by human beings can be dated back when they began creating simple tools from natural resources. From using fire to prepare their food which led to the increase of food production to the use of the wheel which aided in moving from one place to another and environmental controlling, human beings are
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There is no way that technology can determine the social outcomes of a society. However, technology is usually an extension of what human beings can do. This approach emphasizes that the human agency is the center which determines what they can do with technology.
A good example is the telephone. In such a scenario, it should analyze the people who use the technology and what ways one can do with the telephone. Before the invention of the radio, the telephone was mostly used as an item which could pass on news and also offer entertainment to people. However, it was never thought as a gadget of personal communication. Many radio lovers thought it would only be used as a point of point communication compared to a broadcasting item. The early internet, which was mainly used by the military was never seen as a major communication gadget as it is used in the present world (Hutchby, 2001).
The technical properties that each medium possess usually places different parameters on the people using them and usually avail themselves on specific occasions only. This is why in social determinism in terms of technology; it is difficult to ignore the potential of various Medias (Mayberry, 1991). However, it should not be forgotten that human beings who are acting as an agency have an option on how and when they can use technology. This means that the development of new technology is neither predictable nor fixed

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