When people talk about technology, a lot of us automatically think about computers and high tech gadgets. But, are these things really technology? Sort of – they are products of and tools for the development of technology. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, technology is “the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area.” Our friend, Wikipedia, elaborates by saying:
Technology is the making, modification, usage, and knowledge of tools, machines, techniques, crafts, systems, methods of organization, in order to solve a problem, improve a preexisting solution to a problem, achieve a goal or perform a specific function. … Technologies significantly affect human as well as other animal species’ ability to control and adapt to their natural environments.
Today’s picture isn’t a very exciting picture of technology, but I think it high lights the two things I think of when I look at computers and such: (a) the fact that this is what most of us think of when we hear the word “technology,” and (b) one of the sucky things about technology is all the waste we accumulate. These items will be surplused and either re-used or passed on to the next generation of users (sold, etc.), but in our throw-away culture, a lot of e-waste just gets thrown out, which is both wasteful and bad for the environment.