78 Matching Annotations
  1. Mar 2018
    1. aid of reason,

      The Age of Reason.

    2. The only thing that was needed, then, was to figure out exactly how the natural laws applied to human beings and social institutions and then appl y then

      This sounds Greek in that they are looking to unearth the true natural meaning and order of things.

    3. building in the human understandinga true model of the world, such as it is in fact, not such as a man's own reason would have it to be

      So practical, and definitely counter to what the Ancient Greeks would have us believe with their non-action and philosophy of essence etc. I hear my mother saying "get out and do something, you can't complain that things aren't as they should be, the world isn't fair."

  2. Feb 2018
    1. xpose the psychic foundations of our modern technology

      Relates to the main question of our class, how does this frame our view of technology? The view that technology is ok, important, even God's will.

    2. arks the most drastic change of world view

      Very interesting to think about, and much more important at that time than we may realize today due to the lesser importance of religion in our time.

    3. oikoumene

      Meaning inhabited parts of the earth.

    4. Semitization

      To make something more Semitic. (Hebrew, Arabic, Aramaic)

    5. Formerly he had been part of nature; now he became an exploiter of nature

      Making just enough to get by is part of nature, making more than you need is exploiting nature here.

    6. Temperance

      Moderation self-restraint. Capitalized here because temperance was represented by an Angel on a Tarot card?

    7. The earliest indication that men thought advancing technology to be an aspect of Christian virtue appears in the Utrecht Psalter

      Important to have this feeling written down.

    8. ambivalence

      mixed feelings

    9. Western men felt perfectly compatible with machines

      Once they allowed technology with their spirituality, they were most of the way there.

    10. extant


    11. ignorance, vice, and physical weaknes

      Seems important. It is interesting to see physical weakness as a vice ...

    12. Indian Brahmins

      Hindu Priest caste.

    13. ascetics

      Another word for monk, one who practices severe self-discipline and abstention.

    14. glazed windows in his time

      Wow! this was a big invention in the arts.

    15. flywheels

      A flywheel is a mechanical device specifically designed to efficiently store rotational energy. Flywheels resist changes in rotational speed by their moment of inertia. The amount of energy stored in a flywheel is proportional to the square of its rotational speed. -Wikipedia

    16. Occident

      Countries in the West, as apposed to the Orient countries in the East.

    17. Yet this Irish mediationof Greek secular alienation from labor and technology was to have small in flu en ce in th e We s t

      A good thing!

    18. Marywas intent to be fed by the Lord; Martha was intent on how to feed the Lord. This is the day to prepare a feast for the Lord]

      Contrasted to the view that Mary was in the "right" held by Constantinople.

    19. acquiescing

      accepting with reluctance.

    20. scriptural exegesis

      Critical reading of scripture.

    21. Lucretius

      Roman poet and philosopher best known for his work "on the nature of things." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/De_rerum_natura Very interesting, seems like one of the first Roman works that doesn't use the gods to explain nature, atoms, the soul etc.

    22. It was the perfect expression of Western voluntarism, but it violated Greek intellectualist sensibilities about God's nature.

      An argument by the author as to why the West was "ready" for technological advancement more than their eastern counterpart.

    23. The technological creativity of medieval Europe is one of the resonant facts of history.

      Especially in agriculture and warfare.

    24. We are driven to ask not only what happened but also why it happened

      Otherwise history would be boring and also rather pointless!

    1. the Byzantine and Arabic scholars

      In my understanding, these cultures are considered outliers of this period and did not suffer what we now think of as the Dark Age loss of technology. It seems these societies were able to retain city-states.

    2. Mbuti, for example, satisfied with their traditional hunting methods, rejected the use of guns for hunting despite clear advantages over nets and spears, while the differing circumstances of the Eskimos led them to accept guns

      This would be interesting to study in the future. What were those differences?

    3. Technological Revolution in Feudal Europe

      I hadn't heard of this revolution before this reading.

    4. 5624 watermills in 3000 communities

      Very impressive and I would not have guessed this for the time. I guess this is one of the examples of how our view of the "Dark Ages" is at times flawed and outdated.

    5. spatial relationships

      I don't understand this, or the correlation.

    6. thirteenth century, and perhaps the most outstanding in the Middle Ages

      The middle ages ended in the 15th century.

    7. Roger Bacon

      Roger Bacon was not as respected in his time as he came to be later.

    1. philosophy of technology begins with the Greeks and is in fact the foundation of all Western philosophy

      This is very eye-opening. He is saying that Philosophy is in essence the study of technology because studying technology is studying the meaning, purpose and these ideas can be applied to nature as well.

    2. He relies on the structure of techne to explain not only artifacts, but nature as well

      Did other Greeks not do this?

    3. thing exists in an ideal realm

      This allows us to judge if a thing is really that thing or if it does not meet the criteria to be called a thing. This idea also explains how each flower can look different, but we know it is a flower, otherwise we would have to name each different flower only and we could not categorize them as flowers.

    4. The flower emerges along with what makes it a flowe

      We have no one to assign the role of creator unless religion is invoked, with poesis there is a creator who is making the artifact for a purpose. There is much separation between the need, original creation and how things are today in nature. Even with evolution it is hard to explain this today because nature moves slowly and it often takes thousands of years to change.

    5. they did have all sorts of techniques and crafts that were the equivalent for their time of what technology is for us today.

      An interesting idea and point. At the core of these purposes and ideas of techne are similarities to modern technology and fields of study. Building things, healing people, we are still striving to do the same things, just with more help from technology and a different way of going about it all today.

    6. this is the content of knowledge

      To know what the purpose of a thing is has much more substance as a topic than if it exists or not.

    7. technai show the “right way” to do things in a very strong, even an objective sense

      Does this have the potential to stifle innovation?

    8. artifacts

      I wonder why this is translated from Greek as "artifact?" The connotation of an artifact is something old, but this definition could be something newly created.

    9. The Greeks understood nature to be that which creates itself, that which emerges from out of itself

      would be interesting to see the ancient Greeks thoughts on a clone having a child, replicating cells, or machines with the ability to create duplicates of themselves, once man-made, now the second generation is "natural" by this definition.

    10. Western philosophy

      The science of trying to understand nature, and our place in it could be one definition. It seems that the link between philosophy and technology is inseperable.

    11. humanity is a laboring sort of animal constantly at work transforming nature

      Transforming nature, or "second nature," as the Romans put it. This is interrelated with technology, humans affecting the world, changing our course and place in the world by controlling it.

    1. Summary Marquit begins by introducing us to the principal concern of philosophy of technology, which is how technological development influences societal organization and culture and how culture and society influence and drive technology. He then repeats the three theories of technological and societal relationships that Nye introduced us to last week. Technological determinism states that technology spontaneously evolves and that society must adapt to make efficient use of it. Second, technological advance is driven by human culture and cultural developments. Third, a mix of both of those views is the most generally held. Marquit makes the case that Human evolution is intertwined with technology and that technological, biological and societal interactions make up a kind of pyramid of forces that created the modern Human. Bipedality freed up our hands to use and create tools, while the need and ability to use tools may have driven us to develop brains large and capable enough to make use of the tools. Changes in the hand allowed for the use of tools, while the lowering of the larynx and decrease in canine teeth size enabled articulate speech which was another use of larger brains. Tools, intelligence and bipedality were critical in the move to humans as hunters. The first evidence of human hunting is from one-hundred-thousand years ago, an eight foot wooden spear found in an elephant. As a case-study for ancient hunting societies the Mbuti people of the Ituri rain forest in Zaire are a good example. Most of the people in the society participate in the hunt, and there is little hierarchical structure. There is much cooperation between ages and genders, especially in the important songs used for various reasons. Group members make decisions collectively, with the chief providing guidance in conflict, the shaman providing religious guidance, and singers and dancers serving important roles as well. The first major revolution in social organization associated with technological developments was in 10,000 B.C. with the advent of the city-state in Mesopotamia, Egypt, China, India, Mesoamerica, and the Andes. The first sign of technological change involved the transition to complex foraging, society becoming more static with the ability to acquire a surplus of resources and store them. This gave rise to larger populations and allowed for some specialization. Social differentiation arises through the need for individuals to be in charge of administrative tasks. Structures are built to house goods and ceremonial structures hint at the possibility that leaders and central management were present. Eventually the state emerges as a bureaucratic institution and exerts control over resources. Needing a reason to justify this control, institutions are put in place based on morality and being enforced with the threat of physical violence. In 3300 B.C. bronze metallurgy is introduced in Mesopotamia and Egypt. The ability to create metal tools significantly increases productivity and harvest capability, leading to a surge in population and allowing for more specialized professions, including the first known specialization that is not related to the ruling bureaucracy or directly to food production, the blacksmith. Urban developments spring up as a result of these changes and society becomes stratified into state societies by the 4th century B.C. which are ruled by priest-kings. Later in the Middle East accounting for all the surplus supplies becomes critical and because of this need, mathematics, the first currency and the first written language, cuneiform is developed. Greeks as discussed in the last article, equated technology and physical labor as being lesser than theorizing about philosophy of mathematics. The Greeks also have slaves, so labor is much more efficient than implementing new technology. The Romans a few centuries later did innovate and had a much higher opinion of technology. They used their centralized power to build aqueducts, roads and grain mills. The Chinese in Asia, valued technology, science and writing very highly. As a result were much ahead of their western peers for a long time. The early move to a feudal system of a lord, taxation in the form of unpaid labor, and very centralized government however, stunted their growth, there was not enough free time available to the lower class and the middle class was caught up in serving the lords who were content with the system.

      Response Marquit lays out the principal concern of philosophy of technology which is how technological development influences societal organization and culture and how culture and society influence and drive technology and I think this is the lens through which we should be looking at this article. The course dictates that we look at how this frames our relationship to technology which I think is complementary. Regarding the triangle or pyramid of society, biology and technology, I find this very relevant in today’s world. Soon technology and society may even more directly impact our biology. Indirectly our biology has been greatly shaped in recent years by modern medicine. In times past many of us with what are seen as minor health issues today would be dead or looked upon as detrimental to society, today many of these health issues are able to be corrected. In the near future the relationship with biology and technology/society will have a much more direct impact. As long as society allows, humans will begin augmenting themselves, if not at a dna level perhaps as implants, and it will be something to keep an eye on. I found the portion of the article relating to the formation of city-states and production and storage of excess products extremely interesting and important. The relationship between technology and society is really boiled down and almost purified in this moment. Society was so simple before we had excess food, there was little to no hierarchy and no social classes. We see a clear delineation between the time before and after humans started to settle down. The creation of modern society is seen in its’ infancy in this period and I think it can be a great place for me to study technology going forward. It surprised me how much studying history really taught me about how technology affects us today! I am happy that we will be studying more about Greek and Chinese society after this paper, because it seems brushed over compared with how much detail and growth we really see in the ancient Mesopotamian and Egyptian cultures within the article. I did find it interesting how these more modern (by comparison) groups were described as failures in Marquit’s opinion. The Greeks held themselves back by thinking of technology as a lesser endeavor, while the Chinese organized their society in such a way that they did not allow for growth, the lavish lifestyle of the upper class cramped the growth of their area.

    2. European feudalism

      This time period of Europe was known as the Middle or Dark Ages, and is associated with little to no technological growth, so the fact that China reached this period naturally sooner and stayed there is a great point and good explanation as to why technological growth stagnated.

    3. No man can practice virtue who is living the life of a mechanic or labourer

      Wow, I would like to delve further into why he believed this.

    4. to form local alliances

      Weaker neighbors were upset with the policies of the stronger and therefore willing to team up with the Spanish to overthrow them.

    5. cuneiform

      "A system of writing first developed by the ancient Sumerians of Mesopotamia c. 3500-3000 BCE. It is considered the most significant among the many cultural contributions of the Sumerians" a carefully cut writing implement known as a stylus is pressed into soft clay to produce wedge-like impressions that represent word-signs (pictographs) and, later, phonograms or word-concepts' (closer to a modern day understanding of aword'). All of the great Mesopotamian civilizations used cuneiform until the alphabetic script was adopted sometime around 100 B.C.

    6. token

      Currency for easier trading.

    7. physical force to enforce the new social morality.

      Punishment for breaking of the rules. Later this would be also war on other peoples to take their things or change their beliefs.

    8. emergence of an individual, such as a chie

      Compare the power of this chief to the previous mention of a chief. Older chief would have a say in conflicts and act as mentor, this chief was in charge of who got food and redistribution of resources, quite a lot more power.

    9. f social stratificatio

      Settling down allows for property to be acquired leading to classes of people, the have's and have-not's.

    10. domestication of animals and plants

      This is a big step.

    11. central management may have been needed

      Organization is needed for groups this large, forced change in response to technology!

    12. Mesopotamia, Egypt, China, India, Mesoamerica, and the Andes

      I find it interesting that these areas with the exception of maybe China are rough climates for hunter-gatherers, and they are all good places to grow crops. Places like Europe, Africa and North America did not need this move because they were symbiotic with their surroundings.

    13. the chief

      1) The Chief give leadership in dealing with conflict. 2) The Shaman who is the religoius leader. 3) Dancer or Singer who is skilled in group ceremony.

    14. absence of hierarchical structure

      Something that happens when the society is moving and there is a noted lack of individual property.

    15. four to five hours

      Not too shabby.

    16. symbioticrelationship with the forest ecology by a culture of minimal hunting,

      I think that this is important, if they did not establish the symbiotic relationship, and like many other societies, exhausted their resources, they would have been forced to "advance" their society. I put advance there in quotations because that is advancement from my point of view of a westerner from the twenty-first century, there is something already advanced and perhaps more advanced than us in these humans who have found a way to not destroy their planet, but live within it and along with it.

    17. These people lived until the 1980s much as they had thousands of years ag

      Amazing, it is like living on another planet, or time-traveling to the past.

    18. cave paintings

      Wikipedia has good picture representations of early cave paintings here.

    19. three-way interaction of technological, societal, and biological interactions

      This is the first mention of biological reasons for technology and it's role in human development. He goes on to mention two legs allowing our hands to be free to use tools, brain size allowing us to comprehend and analyze tool usage ( this makes me think about dolphins and whales and if they had evolved with limbs in order to create and utilize tools), touches on the development of the human hand being good for tool usage, and teeth and larynx allowing us to form speech.

    20. The change from mobile to sedentary cultures

      This is one of the biggest shifts of humanity. This move from always having to move made it possible for specialization and more growth.

  3. Jan 2018
    1. "second nature."

      I have never heard second nature used this way!

    2. The business of every art," he asserted, "is to bring something into existence.


    3. written records

      lots of repetition of this idea of tools before writing.

    4. ach involves the organization of sequences, either in words or in mental images

      Tools require a need(problem), and an improvement (solution.)

    5. That is why animals are atechnical; they are content with the simple act of living."' Humans, in contrast, continually redefine their necessities to include more

      Good point. Humans could survive with much less, but are not content with it.

    6. Deadly tools also facilitated murder and warfare

      "Human Nature"

    7. Our ancestors evolved an opposition between thumb and fingers that made it easier to grasp and control objects than it is for other species

      Key for much of our tool usage.

    8. Technologies are not foreign to "human nature" but inseparable from it.

      What is human nature? One aspect could be trying to simplify life or to improve it.

    9. ool use separated humans from all other creatures

      Tool use could be one definition of technology.

    10. One way

      I like that Nye admits his way is "one way." Not the only way or the definitive way, he allows that there are other ways to look at technology in addition to his.

    1. ut humansbecoming machines

      Second test of my annotation

    2. The danger is not machines becoming humans

      This quote is very sci-fi. I like it.

    3. to someone's post using the "reply tool" (bent arrow at the bottom left of all posts). Lastly, you can highlight some text on this document (a word, phrase, sentence, paragraph, etc.) and annotate it with your respon

      checking if this works