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Computers & social change Essay

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To argue for and against, use authors that are for and against technological determinism. In order for me to carry out this task effectively, I will define what is meant by the term technological determinism then break down the mystery of these term into parts and also demonstrate out some different technologists who have had a say on the term. According to Babylon, Technological Determinism is considered as an autonomous ling and is defined as technology being developed by its own ruling, with its potential limited by material resources.

1 Authors For As said by Neville Holmes a senior lecturer at the University of Tasmania “Computers are merely tools. They are not members of society; they are not even pseudo members, like corporations and governments. They are not independent agents. Like cars and telephones, they only do things if and when someone uses them. They can neither be blamed for what they do (are used for), nor given credit for what they do (are used for).

“2 Here Holmes is arguing in favour of the above statement, he is telling readers that computers should not be classified as living being that they are just machines which we can control or use to assist ones doing, they are helpers or assistants. Also Jacque Ellul is arguing alongside Holmes, he also apply that computers are not independent of social change as he wrote that; ”Technology, is symbolic of a cancer which as it grows increases the fundamental danger to its host, in this case society” Ellul see’s the idea of technology as a whole as an autonomous means with no ruling.

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He suggests that computers can not be autonomy of social change because they are not only created by humans but they are also used by humans. 3 Arthurs Against Whereas the Dutch social critic Michiel Schwarz is against the above authors opinion as he stated that; ”Technology has become our environment as well as our ideology. ” ”We no longer use technology, we live it. ” Schwarz is arguing for computers, he believes humans see computers as the structure of society.

He is trying to tell us that computers are independent of social change. Also Marshall McLuhan is arguing alongside Schwarz, he believes that computers are independent of social change as he stated that ”inventions in technology invariably cause cultural change. ” McLuhan is trying to inform readers of his theory that the introduction of technology has changed the world, is still changing the world and will always have some kind of connection to do with the rapid evolving of the world.

4 Conclusion As a whole having looked at different authors’ point of view over the past years, one can see that computers have played and are still playing a great responsibility amongst our society since technologies are improving in terms of their functioning and capability, the society is adapting to it. I agree with (name of author u fink is right) and because of his/her point, we can see that technology is definitely the motor of our society therefore, I recon.

1 Babylon Translation, Available at: http://dictionary.babylon.com/Technological_Determinism (Assessed on 17-December-2008)

2 Neville Holmes, University of Tasmania, Available at: http://eprints.utas.edu.au/2765/1/ieeec97may.pdf (Assessed on 3-November-2008)

3 Jacque Ellul, Available at: http://www.umsl.edu/~keelr/280/class/gregtd.html (Assessed on 16-December-2008)

4 Amy Schick, Technological Determinism: A Critique, Available at: http://oak.cats.ohiou.edu/~as491398/tdaes.htm (Assessed on 17-December-2008)

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