Cover of Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology
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Displaying: 1-10 of 10 documents

1. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Dina Babushkina What Does It Mean for a Robot to Be Respectful?
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Intelligent systems are increasingly incorporated into relationships that had, until recently, been reserved solely for humans, and are delegated the role of a partner, which, if human, would presuppose a system of normatively regulated interactivity. This includes expectations of reciprocity and certain attitudes/actions towards human actors, such as respect. Even though a robot cannot respect, I argue that it can be respectful. A robot can be attributed respectfulness (in the direct sense) iff its interactions with persons reflect the respectful attitude of the humans involved in its design and operation. Robot respectfulness is a compound of (a) robotic actions governed by principles that (b) reflect the attitude of respect for persons by humans involved in its design, implementation, and professional use. I define respect for persons as a commitment to core values that make someone a person (i.e., intellect, rationality of reactive attitudes, autonomy, personal integrity, and trust in expertise).
2. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
John Danaher Technological Change and Human Obsolescence: An Axiological Analysis
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Can human life have value in a world in which humans are rendered obsolete by technological advances? This article answers this question by developing an extended analysis of the axiological impact of human obsolescence. In doing so, it makes four main arguments. First, it argues that human obsolescence is a complex phenomenon that can take on at least four distinct forms. Second, it argues that one of these forms of obsolescence (‘actual-general’ obsolescence) is not a coherent concept and hence not a plausible threat to human well-being. Third, it argues that existing fears of technologically-induced human obsolescence are less compelling than they first appear. Fourth, it argues that there are two reasons for embracing a world of widespread, technologically-induced human obsolescence.
3. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Alexander Castleton Postphenomenology or Essentialism?: An Exploration of Inuit Commercialization of Country Foods through Facebook
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Inuit customs establish that food must be shared with the community. For many Inuit, income from wage-work feeds back into the subsistence economy, as money is needed to buy snowmobiles, gas, or rifles to practice harvesting activities. In the last decade, both scholars and journalists have noted that the commercialization of traditional foods (also known as country foods) through Facebook is a current controversy among Inuit. This article will discuss this issue contrasting technological essentialism and postphenomenology. While technological essentialism establishes, from a Heideggerian perspective, that technology transforms reality into pure resource, postphenomenology focuses on describing how technology helps to shape the relations between humans and the world. This article will propose that the commercialization of country foods reflects Facebook’s multistability—that is, the fact that any given technology can present the world in multiple ways.
4. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Gordon Hull Infrastructure, Modulation, Portal: Thinking with Foucault about how Internet Architecture Shapes Subjects
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Following Foucault’s remarks on the importance of architecture to disciplinary power, this paper offers a typology of power relations expressed in different models of Internet governance. Infrastructure governance understands the Internet as a common pool or public resource, on the model of traditional infrastructures like roads and bridges. Modulation governance, which I study by way of Net Neutrality debates in the U.S., understands Internet governance as traffic shaping. Portal governance, which I study by way of data collection policies of dominant platform companies, understands the Internet as creating a user experience that facilitates data mining. The latter two are forms of architectural disciplinary power that undermine the first. I then argue that the rise of portal and modulation governance primarily serves to remake parts of civil society by fostering market norms of consumption and entrepreneurialism. In that sense, efforts to shape Internet architecture need to be understood as techniques of subjectification.
5. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Cristiano Cordeiro Cruz Decolonial Approaches to Technical Design: Building Other Possible Worlds and Widening Philosophy of Technology
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Decolonial approaches to technical design are part of a broader category of design methodologies, which actualize unfulfilled sociotechnical potentialities. In this paper, I present some decolonial theory concepts and discuss three decolonial approaches to illuminate philosophical debates that: 1) Can find in them clear traces of a third set of elements that shape every design/technology, along with the well-analyzed technical-scientific and ethical-political ones. In dialogue with Walter Vincenti and some others, I call these elements structured procedures, imagery lexicon, and aesthetical values, which constitute the central aspects of Eugene Ferguson’s art of engineering; 2) Identify, starting from some Gilbert Simondon’s and Andrew Feenberg’s ideas, any invention as triply situated (in the physical environment, the established sociotechnical reality, and the inventor’s culture and knowledge); 3) Can be taught by these decolonial approaches about some of the mainstream philosophy of technology’s colonial limitations, becoming thus able to widen (or decolonize) it.
6. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Piercosma Bisconti, Antonio Carnevale Alienation and Recognition: The Δ Phenomenology of the Human–Social Robot Interaction (HSRI)
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A crucial philosophical problem of social robots is how much they perform a kind of sociality in interacting with humans. Scholarship diverges between those who sustain that humans and social robots cannot by default have social interactions and those who argue for the possibility of an asymmetric sociality. Against this dichotomy, we argue in this paper for a holistic approach called “Δ phenomenology” of HSRI (Human–Social Robot Interaction). In the first part of the paper, we will analyse the semantics of an HSRI. This is what leads a human being (x) to assign or receive a meaning of sociality (z) by interacting with a social robot (y). Hence, we will question the ontological structure underlying HSRIs, suggesting that HSRIs may lead to a peculiar kind of user alienation. By combining all these variables, we will formulate some final recommendations for an ethics of social robots.
special section on technology and pandemic
7. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Nolen Gertz Accommodating Ourselves to Death: COVID and the Threat of Technological Solutions to Human Crises
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COVID-19 has created new opportunities for tech companies to supply the world with technological solutions intended to help individuals, communities, and nations maintain normalcy in the midst of disease, death, and destruction. Technologies such as virtual meeting software, coronavirus monitoring apps, and air filtration systems raise the question of whether our technological resiliency is not only helping us to maintain life as it was before, but also preventing us from asking whether we should maintain life as it was before. By comparing Sartre’s analysis of what it was like to live during the Nazi occupation of Paris to current attempts to live during the pandemic, this article investigates how the technological solutions that maintain ordinary life in the midst of catastrophe should lead us to question the catastrophic nature of what we take to be ordinary life.
8. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Jill Drouillard Feminist Moral Tensions for a Nomadic Subject: Navigating the Pandemic
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This article uses the figure of the nomad from the work of Rosi Braidotti to critically examine rhetoric about vaccine and masking mandates, and the science of COVID more broadly. I draw out the tensions and ambivalence felt as we navigate this on-going crisis in ways epitomized by the phrase “I have a healthy mistrust of authority, and I am still vaccinated.” Though ambivalent, the nomadic subject finds an affirmative ethics, navigating the “right” response to incite positive change and expose our current states of subjectivity. Recognizing the ambivalence of this state may be useful for feminists who critique medicine for its historical sexist and racist “objectivism,” while also supporting medical science and trust in the case of vaccine mandates.
book reviews
9. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Michał Wieczorek The Good Life after the Narrative Turn: Review of Narrative and Technology Ethics, by Wessel Reijers and Mark Coeckelbergh
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10. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 26 > Issue: 1
Pan Baojun The Origin and Evolution of Philosophy of Technology: Comments on The Thoughtful History of Philosophy of Technology: Review of The Thoughtful History of Philosophy of Technology, edited by Chen Fan and Zhu Chunyan
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