The Changing Spaces of Reading and Writing

Technology is…by Tracy Gidinski

To continue from my “Text Is” post, this quotation from Ayn Rand summarizes my thoughts on what technology is fairly well:

Technology is an applied science, i.e., it translates the discoveries of theoretical science into practical application to man’s life. As such, technology is not the first step in the development of a given body of knowledge, but the last; it is not the most difficult step, but it is the ultimate step, the implicit purpose, of man’s quest for knowledge.  (Ayn Rand. Apollo 11. The Objectivist, Sept. 1969, 9.)

Rand describes technology as the “ultimate step” in the quest for knoweledge, yet new technologies implicitly create the ability for future technologies.  In relation to text, then, technology is its leading edge – technology paves the way for new forms of text, which leads to new forms of thinking, on a continual “quest for knowledge.”

Or is it?  Instead of a leading edge, do text and technology work together as a double-edged sword?  Is text the leading edge for technology in the same way that technology is the leading edge for text?


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