Let’s Tech About It


Douthwaite highlights numerous ideas of “technological fix” that the other authors would argue only deal with the symptoms.  Huesemann states everything prior to our meddling with the environment evolved at a slower rate, allowing for the the most beneficial adaptations to be expressed and promoted (Huesemann, 4). While research and contemplation goes into each engineered solution, the time scale is expedited compared to nature.  This is due to the impatience of societies, especially while facing a crisis. Unlike nature, we are not able to catch unintended consequences prior to widespread implementation. Johnston mentions that societal issues do not mean technological issues, and when the two become intertwined incidents such as the Manhattan Project can result, a scientific conclusion that didn’t allow for a societal resolution. (Johnston, 51)  


Society has a love-hate relationship with technology and most “technological fixes” are viewed with polarized views. Technology is one way humans can influence the world, for bad or good. Our almost hubris-like desire to have an impact can inevitably lead to unintended repercussions. Johnston mentions most societal issues can’t be satisfactorily dealt with by a new technological advancement.  Certainly, in the case of illness outbreaks and environmental mediation, science has a large role to play. Within other issues, such as racial issues, technology has only a limited role. It is not a fix-all solution and even in the cases were it is useful the consequences may not be realized until later. The rate at which humans can impact our environment and situation is extraordinary, but nature and biology have not evolved at the same pace. Unintended consequences are unavoidable and unless we give control back to evolution, we need to determine how to deal with these problems.We should keep attempting to fix issues with technology, without it the world would look very different.