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Download e-book for iPad: Analytical Philosophy of Technology by Friedrich Rapp (auth.)

By Friedrich Rapp (auth.)

ISBN-10: 9027712220

ISBN-13: 9789027712226

ISBN-10: 940098412X

ISBN-13: 9789400984127

Friedrich Rapp, during this magisterial and demanding essay on expertise, the advanced human phenomenon that calls for philosophy of technological know-how, philosophy of tradition, ethical perception, and historic sensi­ tivity for its knowing, writes modestly of the grave and ten­ tative state of affairs within the philosophy of know-how. regardless of the professional­ discovered thinkers who've committed time and mind's eye and ratio­ nal penetration, regardless of the big literature now on hand, the various and comparative viewpoints of political, analytic, regardless of metaphysical, cultural, even esthetic commitments, certainly regardless of the sincere becoming a member of of old and systematic tools of inves­ tigation, we're faraway from a passable realizing of the thrill and sorrows, the achievements and disappointments, of the tech­ nological saga of human societies. Professor Rapp has ready this document at the philosophical figuring out of know-how for a global; if ever philosophy have been wanted, it really is within the prac­ tical try to locate possible choices between applied sciences, to foresee hazards and possibilities, to settle on with a feeling of the possibil­ ity of pleasurable humane values. Emerson pointed out the coed now not as a consultant aside, yet as 'Man pondering' and Rapp's essay so speaks to we all, business international or 3rd international, engineers or humanists, drained or lively, worried or optimistic.

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One is historical, the other systematic. Neglect of either approach amounts to an inappropriate curtailment of the problem. Consequently, in what follows I shall first give a rough outline of the historical stages of technology, and subsequently treat systematic attempts to define 'technology'. 26 CHAPTER II 3. PERIODS IN THE HISTORY OF TECHNOLOGY Man may be characterized by his biological deficiencies (Gehlen). In order to hold his own when confronted by nature he has always had to resort to certain technologies in the face of nature's demands.

Ortega y Gasset sees the decisive principle for dividing the history of technology into distinct eras to be the particular concept of technology which prevailed at the time. He distinguishes three such distinct concepts: (1) the technology of chance; (2) the THE CONCEPT OF 'TECHNOLOGY' 27 technology of craftsmanship; and (3) the technology of engineering science. The technology of chance is typical of prehistoric man and is illustrated today by the contemporary primitive, (1). In this stage technology remains totally embedded in an unreflective, animalistic flow of natural life.

6, 14). In the case of artisan technology, however, the range of nature-modifying action is, in principle, limited. The transition from artisan manufacture to large-scale industrial production, for example, was not possible until new energy sources (coal, natural gas, petroleum), iron as a construction material, and mechanized procedures based on the division of labor were utilized. This development effected a fundamental change in man's relation to his environment; whereas in earlier times, despite the use of tools, technology for all practical purposes, reflected the direct impact of human action on an untouched nature, it now takes 50 CHAPTER III place indirectly by means of technological machinery apparatuses which, as it were, intervenes between man and nature, and which is itself applied to already modified and prepared working materials.

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