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Displaying: 1-7 of 7 documents

1. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Mark Coeckelbergh Technology as Skill and Activity: Revisiting the problem of Alienation
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Can we conceive of a philosophy of technology that is not technophobic, yet takes seriously the problem of alienation and human meaning-giving? This paperretrieves the concern with alienation, but brings it into dialogue with more recent philosophy of technology. It defines and responds to the problem of alienation in a way that avoids both old-style human-centered approaches and contemporary thingcentered or hybridity approaches. In contrast to the latter, it proposes to reconcile subject and object not at the ontic level but at the ontological, transcendental level and at the level of skilled activity. Taking inspiration from Dreyfus’s reading of Heidegger and engaging critically with the work of Borgmann and Arendt, it explores a phenomenology and ethics of skill. It is concluded that new and emerging technologies must be evaluated not only as artifacts and their consequences, but also in terms of the skills and activities they involve and require. Do they promote engagement with the world and with others, thus making us into better persons?
2. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Andrew Wells Garnar Hickman, Technology, and the Postmodern Condition
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In his book Pragmatism as Post-postmodernism Larry Hickman argues that Classical Pragmatism (Peirce, James, Dewey, Mead) shares common features withpostmodern philosophies and provides a viable alternative to those philosophies. I agree with Hickman’s argument, and this paper argues that there are further connections between pragmatism and postmodernism in light of Hickman’s philosophy of technology. The paper explores the connections between postmodernism and technology, demonstrates how postmodern philosophy can be used to interpret contemporary postmodern technologies, and concludes by arguing that these interpretations fit well with Hickman’s work on technology through analyzing technologies like the iPod.
3. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Craig Condella Democracy, Narcissism, and the World Wide Web
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Against a thinker like Martin Heidegger who takes restraints on individual freedom and the promotion of authoritarianism as implicit features in the ongoing development of technology, Andrew Feenberg argues for a “democratic rationalization” of modern technology whereby people effectively choose their own futures, not in spite of their tools, but increasingly because of them. Acknowledging the Web’s democratic potential, I believe that a new threat—far different from authoritarian regimes or structures—has emerged: a rampant and multifarious narcissism that threatens to drown democratic ideals in a wave of self-obsession and self-promotion.
4. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Kimberly Bonia, Fern Brunger, Laura Fullerton, Chad Griffiths, Chris Kaposy DAKO on Trial: A Case Study in the Politics of a Medical Controversy
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This paper tells the story of a recent laboratory medicine controversy in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. During the controversy, a DAKOAutostainer machine was blamed for inaccurate breast cancer test results that led to the suboptimal treatment of many patients. In truth, the machine was not at fault. Using concepts developed by Bruno Latour and Pierre Bourdieu, we document the changing nature of the DAKO machine’s agency before, during, and after the controversy, and we make the ethical argument that treating the machine as a scapegoat was harmful to patients. The mistreatment of patients was directly tied to a misrepresentation of the DAKO machine. The way to avoid both forms of mistreatment would have been to include all humans and nonhumans affected by the controversy in the network of decision-making.
5. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Kirk Besmer Embodying a Translation Technology: The Cochlear Implant and Cyborg Intentionality
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In this paper, I seek to contribute to post-phenomenological descriptions of human-technological relations and the intentionalities exhibited in them by focusingon the intentionality exhibited in the use of a cochlear implant. To do so, I will use concepts developed by Don Ihde and further extended by Peter-Paul Verbeek to show that while post-phenomenological categories illuminate the intentional relationship of a cochlear implant wearer to her world, this relationship defies easy categorization. An examination of successful functioning with a cochlear implant will reveal a distinct form of technological embodiment and intentionality that confirms and extends previous post-phenomenological analyses.
6. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Jim Gerrie Using and Refusing: A Philosophy of Technology Critique of James Rachels's Attack on the Distinction between Killing and Letting Die
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James Rachels has argued on Utilitarian grounds that since removing life-sustaining treatment and physician-assisted suicide both aim at the very same end,hastening death to limit suffering, there are no morally significant moral distinctions between them. Others have argued for maintaining this distinction based on various forms of deontological and rights-based ethical theories that maintain that all acts of killing are inherently wrong. I argue that the enduring controversy over physician-assisted suicide might not be caused by such fundamental differences of opinion about moral theory, such as that which exists between Utilitarianism and Deontology, so much as by a commonly held misunderstanding of technology. In particular, the conclusion that there are no relevant ethical distinctions between killing and letting die can only be drawn by a Utilitarian, such as Rachels, by ignoring the recent work of philosophers of technology on the non-neutrality thesis.
7. Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Nan Wang, Wenjuan Yin What Is the Character of the Techno-Human Condition?
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