Technology ("science of craft", from Greek τέχνη, techne, "art, skill, cunning of hand"; and -λογία, -logia) is the sum of techniques, skills, methods, and processes used in the production of goods or services or in the accomplishment of objectives, such as scientific investigation. Technology can be the knowledge of techniques, processes, and the like, or it can be embedded in machines to allow for operation without detailed knowledge of their workings. Systems (e. g. machines) applying technology by taking an input, changing it according to the system's use, and then producing an outcome are referred to as technology systems or technological systems.
The simplest form of technology is the development and use of basic tools. The prehistoric discovery of how to control fire and the later Neolithic Revolution increased the available sources of food, and the invention of the wheel helped humans to travel in and control their environment. Developments in historic times, including the printing press, the telephone, and the Internet, have lessened physical barriers to communication and allowed humans to interact freely on a global scale.
Technology has many effects. It has helped develop more advanced economies (including today's global economy) and has allowed the rise of a leisure class. Many technological processes produce unwanted by-products known as pollution and deplete natural resources to the detriment of Earth's environment. Innovations have always influenced the values of a society and raised new questions in the ethics of technology. Examples include the rise of the notion of efficiency in terms of human productivity, and the challenges of bioethics.
Philosophical debates have arisen over the use of technology, with disagreements over whether technology improves the human condition or worsens it. Neo-Luddism, anarcho-primitivism, and similar reactionary movements criticize the pervasiveness of technology, arguing that it harms the environment and alienates people; proponents of ideologies such as transhumanism and techno-progressivism view continued technological progress as beneficial to society and the human condition.
was a Hungarian
-born American nuclear physicist
descent. He was known colloquially as "the father of
the hydrogen bomb
". Teller was an immigrant to the United States during the 1930s, and was an early member of the Manhattan Project
to develop the first atomic bombs. During this time he made a serious push for the first time to develop fusion
-based weapons as well, but they were deferred until after the war. After his controversial testimony in the security clearance hearing of his former Los Alamos
colleague J. Robert Oppenheimer
, Teller became ostracized by much of the scientific community. He continued to find support from the U.S. government and military research establishment. He was a co-founder of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
, and was both director and associate director for many years. In his later years he became especially known for his advocacy of controversial technological solutions to both military and civilian problems, including a plan to excavate an artificial harbor
using thermonuclear explosives. Over the course of his long life, Teller was known both for his scientific ability and his difficult interpersonal relations, and is considered one of the key influences of the character Dr. Strangelove
in the 1964 movie of the same name.
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