Philosophical Paper on the Impact of Technology on Society

Philosophical Paper on the Impact of Technology on Society


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Philosophical Paper on the Impact of Technology on Society

The current age is commonly referred to as the age of technology where essentially every aspect of life involves the use of a technological device. Technology in its broadest sense refers to artifacts created by humans such as computers together with the methods used to come up with the artifacts. Technology is dynamic and constantly changing and the general trend around the world is that the society is depending on technology more and more in everyday life. As a consequence, there is a highly controversial debate regarding the impact of technology on society with one side of the divide supporting its use with the other side disapproving its continued use. Although technology does present some negative aspects to the society, its overall impact is overwhelmingly positive as it has revolutionized the academic, commercial and medical sectors including the enhancement of the level of interactions around the world.

Technology, and specifically computers, has had an invaluable and positive impact on society. Owing to the increasing and constant advancement of the existing technologies, human beings have been able to perform space explorations and consequently gaining a deeper understanding of the universe. Moreover, the society has been able to employ the existing knowledge and technology to develop automobiles and further advanced the artifacts to come up with highly sophisticated vehicles with advanced safety features, comfort levels and admirable speeds. Technology has facilitated the improvement of human entertainment as artifacts such as sound technologies are able to offer sound in very high quality, while entertainers are able to reach a wider audience (Zhu, 2010). The use of computers has further enhanced graphics and special effects for films, music videos and other forms of entertainment including live performances. For instance, during the Coachella concert, revelers were able to experience the live performance via the hologram of one of the most revered musical icons despite him having passed on more than twenty years ago.

Through the effective exploitation of technology medical science has evolved significantly. Scientists and other key players such as physicists have been able to come up with equipment and procedures that have made the diagnosis and treatment of diseases to become more effective. It now faster and more effective to diagnose and treat or manage ailments that were challenging in the past such as cancer, HIV/AIDS, small pox, and  heart diseases among many more. Through the use of technology, life has become much easier than it was before. The use of technology has made it possible to make calculations that are critical for medical research at astounding rates of speed. As a consequence, the increasing speed of performing research in addition to enhancing its effectiveness has increased the chances of finding cures and effective management strategies for serious illnesses. Technology has made it possible to come up with equipment that assists in performing surgeries at highly accurate levels and thereby improving the chances of recovery. Healthcare facilities and professionals are also employing medical software that enhances the process of identifying the appropriate medication, monitoring the health of the patients in addition to organizing and storing data for medical distribution. For instance, the health records of patients is now digitized in most healthcare facilities and hence making it possible to easily retrieve the information in the future. Additionally, in the event of an emergency, the medical personnel on site are able to request access to the patient’s information at the designated facility and thereby improving the chances of offering appropriate care. Health information such as past medication, current medication, and allergies including medical procedures are critical when attending to an accident patient. Therefore, access to such information may serve as a critical determinant of whether the accident patient recovers or succumbs.

There are however, various parties who argue that technology has had a negative impact on manpower and employment. The underlying argument is that the automation of many industrial processes has resulted in a significant decrease in the demand for human labor. For instance, most car assembly companies normally employed tens of people to work in a single line. However, the automation of the single line has resulted in a significant decrease in the number of people working on the same line to just two. On the other hand, although the automation has resulted in the decrease in the number of people working on that particular line, the automation of the line has further created a number of jobs such as the technicians who are not only supposed to install and maintain the automation technology but also many more people who work in the companies that develop the automation software and machines.

Technology has also had a significant positive impact on business processes. Many firms are now using companies to make their book keeping processes more efficient and reliable. Computers are highly effective at keeping track of money, accounts, and inventory. Moreover, it is much easier to prevent and investigate cases of fraud through the use of sophisticated accounting software. For instance, in the past all transactions were recorded manually resulting in high chances of committing errors and fraud. However, through the use of accounting software, the recording processes are automated whereby the recording of transactions does not involve the use of persons who are liable to committing errors and fraud. Payment systems for most organizations and vendors and now computerized whereby the customer makes the necessary payment electronically and consequently leaving a digital record of the transaction that can be traced easily in case of fraud in addition to preventing theft since there is no monetary transaction.

Another field in society that technology has revolutionized in a positive manner is that of education. The contemporary academic scene is characterized by instructors employing modern technologies to teach while the students are also employing modern technologies to facilitate their learning processes. The great Chinese philosopher, Confucius, once said that a picture is worth a thousand words. The philosopher’s statement simply implies that the use of a picture to communicate a message or a point is more effective than using words. On that same understanding, the use of technologies such as holograms and projectors in the classroom has made it possible for instructors to enhance their instruction through the use of vivid images. For instance, instructors are able to present to the students vivid images and graphic videos of geographic occurrences such as volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and tsunamis and consequently enhancing their instruction. Similarly, the students are also able to better understand the course contents through the enhanced presentation. Furthermore, through the use of computers, the internet, and other devices such as PDA’s, students have been able to enhance their researching, typing, and searching processes.  Technology has transformed the traditional physical libraries into online libraries and the physical books and journals into digital formats. Therefore, learners are able to visit the online libraries, online journals, and other sources of information remotely and at convenient locations (Hafstad, 2008). Moreover, learners are also able to access myriad sources of information and thereby enhancing not only their learning processes but also their knowledge and skills. Moreover, learners are not constrained by location when conducting study groups as they are able to form such groups using online platforms and perform their discussions at more convenient locations and time. The modern age is also referred to as the information age since technology has made it possible for the authors of information to publish their information online while at the same time making it possible for the society to access a wide range of information much easily. Additionally, the administrations of academic institution also employ the existing technologies to enhance their functions and consequently facilitating the teaching and learning processes. Through the use of the existing technologies, administrators are able to keep track of the learners’ performances, the type of instruction that is offered to the students, while also benchmarking with the performance of other learning institutions.

Technology has further played a major role in facilitating social interactions. Technology has had a major impact on globalization by transcending the traditional regional, national, and communal boundaries to form a global village. The use of computers and the internet has changed the relationships among people. In particular, internet based platforms such as Twitter and Facebook have played a major role in building a global community where people from all over the world are able to interact with each other more efficiently. Traditionally, maintaining relationships and communication with people afar off was highly complex as one had to either make correspondence by sending letters or travel to where the other person is. However, the internet has now made it possible to maintain those relationships and interactions more conveniently and at remote locations. Moreover, the social media platforms not only connect family members and friends but also allow the formation of groups that facilitate the interaction of persons with common interests. For instance, there are various Facebook groups for persons ascribing to a particular religion whereby, the members of the group brainstorm on pertinent matters while at the same time encouraging and teaching one another. The manner in which the society is working and communicating using the modern technologies has destabilized myriad conventional social categories. The exploitation of the interactions normally occurs as if they are at distinct locations but in reality they are located at their homes or work. Traditionally, such forms and levels of interactions would have only been possibly through face to face meetings. However, the invention of the computer and the internet has served to blur the boundaries. It is possible to break down the above argument further and note the different parties that either agree or disagree with the use of technology. One of the parties is allied to the fifth century B.C. leader Democritus of Greece, while the other party is allied to Socrates, who served as Democritus’ contemporary. The party that is allied to Democritus does not have an issue with the use of technology but rather support its continued use. Such people hold the belief that technology is evolving specie that people need to interact with. The party further holds that technology is an intelligent aspect and in particular, they consider the computer to be an intelligent machine. Similarly, the brain is analogous to a computer while the computer is analogous to a brain and the two work together to make the world a better place. On the other hand, the party that is allied to Socrates is unable to understand technology and the computer in particular and thereby end up fearing its potential. Such persons argue that technologies such as the computer have presented adverse implications to the society by magnifying the already existing evils. The computer has introduced evils such as cyber bullying, hacking, and child pornography. However, in refuting the above argument, it is plausible to argue that the internet is simply a resource that can be either utilized for positive purposes or negative purposes.

In conclusion, it is quite evident that although technology does have its negative aspects, it has had an invaluably positive impact on society. Society has virtually had a positive impact on every aspect of human life. Through the effective use of technology, the society has been able to revolutionize the academic, commercial and medical sectors including the enhancement of the level of interactions around the world. Technology has enhanced both the teaching and learning processes in addition to making it possible for medical personnel to perform their duties more effectively. Corporate institutions are now able to meet their set goals and objectives in a more effective manner. It is important to note at this point that technology is constantly evolving and improving and hence its impact on society in the future is limitless.



Hafstad, L. (2008). Science, technology and society. Annual Report of the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution, 1957, 207-220.

Zhu, Chang. (2010). Teacher roles and adoption of educational technology in the Chinese context. Journal for educational research online, 2(2010), S. 72-86.

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