Philosophy of technology

The Society for Philosophy and Technology is an independent international organization that encourages, supports and facilitates philosophically significant considerations of technology. Founded inthe Society convenes its own international conference biennially. We invite papers, poster presentations, and panel proposals that investigate all areas of philosophy and technology, especially those that have to Suggestions for structure, sponsorship etc.:

Philosophy of technology

References and Further Reading 1. A Brief History of Thinking about Technology The origin of philosophy of technology can be placed in the second half of the 19th century. But this does not mean that philosophers before the midth century did not address questions that would today be thought of as belonging in the domain of philosophy of technology.

This section will give the history of thinking about technology — focusing on a few key figures, namely Plato, Aristotle, Francis Bacon and Martin Heidegger. Plato and Aristotle Philosophers in Greek antiquity already addressed questions related to the making of things.

Philosophy of technology

In classical Greek philosophyreflection on the art of making involved both reflection on human action and metaphysical speculation about what the world was like. In the Timaeus, for example, Plato unfolded a cosmology in which the natural world was understood as having been made by a divine Demiurge, a creator who made the various things in the world by giving form to formless matter in accordance with the eternal Ideas.

For Aristotle, however, Philosophy of technology connection did not consist in a metaphysical similarity in the ways in which natural and man-made Philosophy of technology come into being.

Instead of drawing a metaphysical similarity between the two domains of objects, Aristotle pointed to a fundamental metaphysical difference between them while at the same time making epistemological connections between on the one hand different modes of knowing and on the Philosophy of technology hand different domains of the world about which knowledge can be achieved.

In the Physics Book II, Chapter 1Aristotle made a fundamental distinction between the domains of physis the domain of natural things and poiesis the domain of non-natural things. The fundamental distinction between the two domains consisted in the kinds of principles of existence that were underlying the entities that existed in the two domains.

A plant, for instance, comes into being and remains in existence by means of growth, metabolism and photosynthesis, processes that operate by themselves without the interference of an external agent. For example, unsupported material objects move downward, because that is the natural location for material objects.

In the Nicomachean Ethics Book VI, ChaptersAristotle distinguished between five modes of knowing, or of achieving truth, that human beings are capable of. He began with two distinctions that apply to the human soul.

First, the human soul possesses a rational part and a part that does not operate rationally. The non-rational part is shared with other animals it encompasses the appetites, instincts, etc.

The rational part of the soul in turn can be subdivided further into a scientific part and a deductive or ratiocinative part. The scientific part can achieve knowledge of those entities of which the principles of existence could not have been different from what they are; these are the entities in the natural domain of which the principles of existence are internal to them and thus could not have been different.

The deductive or ratiocinative part can achieve knowledge of those entities of which the principles of existence could have been different; the external principles of existence of artifacts and other things in the non-natural domain could have been different in that, for example, the silver smith who made a particular silver bowl could have had a different purpose in mind than the purpose for which the bowl was actually made.

They are what we today would call science or scientific knowledge epistemeart or craft knowledge techneprudence or practical knowledge phronesisintellect or intuitive apprehension nous and wisdom sophia.

While episteme applies to the natural domain, techne and phronesis apply to the non-natural domain, phronesis applying to actions in general life and techne to the crafts. Nous and sophia, however, do not map onto these two domains: Both Plato and Aristotle thus distinguished between techne and episteme as pertaining to different domains of the world, but also drew connections between the two.

The reconstruction of the actual views of Plato and Aristotle, however, remains a matter of interpretation see Parry, For example, while many authors interpret Aristotle as endorsing the widespread view of technology as consisting in the imitation of nature for example, Zoglauer, From the Middle Ages to the Nineteenth Century: Francis Bacon In the Middle Ages, the ancient dichotomy between the natural and artificial realms and the conception of craftsmanship as the imitation of nature continued to play a central role in understanding the world.

Both were thought of as the same sort of endeavor. This conception of technology led to an elevated appreciation of technical craftsmanship which, as the mere imitation of nature, used to be thought of as inferior to the higher arts in the Scholastic canon that was taught at medieval colleges.

The philosopher and theologian Hugh of St. Victorfor example, in his Didascalicon compared the seven mechanical arts weaving, instrument and armament making, nautical art and commerce, hunting, agriculture, healing, dramatic art with the seven liberal arts the trivium of grammar, rhetoric, and dialectic logic, and the quadrivium of astronomy, geometry, arithmetic, and music and incorporated the mechanical arts together with the liberal arts into the corpus of knowledge that was to be taught Whitney, While the Middle Ages thus can be characterized by an elevated appreciation of the mechanical arts, with the transition into the Renaissance thinking about technology gained new momentum due to the many technical advances that were being made.

A key figure at the end of the Renaissance is Francis Baconwho was both an influential natural philosopher and an important English statesman among other things, Bacon held the offices of Lord Keeper of the Great Seal and later Lord Chancellor.

In his New Atlantis written in and published posthumously inhe presented a vision of a society in which natural philosophy and technology occupied a central position.

In this context it should be noted that before the advent of science in its modern form the investigation of nature was conceived of as a philosophical project, that is, natural philosophy.

New Atlantis is the fictional report of a traveler who arrives at an as yet unknown island state called Bensalem and informs the reader about the structure of its society. The utopian vision in New Atlantis only pertained to the organization of the practice of natural philosophy.The philosophy of technology is a sub-field of philosophy that studies the nature of technology and its social effects.

Philosophical discussion of questions relating to technology (or its Greek ancestor techne) dates back to the very dawn of Western philosophy. This item: Philosophy and Technology by Carl Mitcham Paperback $ In Stock.

Ships from and sold by iridis-photo-restoration.com FREE Shipping on orders over $ Details. Readings in the Philosophy of Technology by David M. Kaplan Paperback $ In Stock. Ships from and sold by iridis-photo-restoration.com: Carl Mitcham.

Philosophy & Technology addresses such challenges, in order to improve our critical understanding of the conceptual nature and practical consequences of technologies, and hence provide the conceptual foundations for their fruitful and sustainable developments.

The philosophy of technology is a sub-field of philosophy that studies the nature of technology and its social effects. Philosophical discussion of questions relating to technology (or its Greek ancestor techne) dates back . Addresses the expanding scope and unprecedented impact of technologies, in order to improve the critical understanding of the conceptual nature and practical consequences, and hence provide the conceptual foundations for their fruitful and sustainable developments.

The journal welcomes high-quality. The Society for Philosophy and Technology is an independent international organization that encourages, supports and facilitates philosophically significant considerations of technology.

Founded in , the Society convenes its own international conference biennially. Read More.

Philosophy of Technology | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy