Definition and usage

The use of the term "technology" has changed significantly over the last 200 years. Before the 20th
century, the term was uncommon in English, and it was used either to refer to the description or study of the useful arts or to allude to technical education, as in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (chartered in 1861).

The term "technology" rose to prominence in the 20th century in connection with the Second Industrial Revolution. The term's meanings changed in the early 20th century when American social scientists, beginning with Thorstein Veblen, translated ideas from the German concept of Technik into "technology." In German and other European languages, a distinction exists between technik and technologie that is absent in English, which usually translates both terms as "technology." By the 1930s, "technology" referred not only to the study of the industrial arts but to the industrial arts themselves.

In 1937, the American sociologist Read Bain wrote that "technology includes all tools, machines, utensils, weapons, instruments, housing, clothing, communicating and transporting devices and the skills by which we produce and use them."Bain's definition remains common among scholars today, especially social scientists. Scientists and engineers usually prefer to define technology as applied science, rather than as the things that people make and use.More recently, scholars have borrowed from European philosophers of "technique" to extend the meaning of technology to various forms of instrumental reason, as in Foucault's work on technologies of the self (techniques de soi).

Dictionaries and scholars have offered a variety of definitions. The Merriam-Webster Learner's Dictionary offers a definition of the term: "the use of science in industry, engineering, etc., to invent useful things or to solve problems" and "a machine, piece of equipment, method, etc., that is created by technology."[8] Ursula Franklin, in her 1989 "Real World of Technology" lecture, gave another definition of the concept; it is "practice, the way we do things around here."[9] The term is often used to imply a specific field of technology, or to refer to high technology or just consumer electronics, rather than technology as a whole.[10] Bernard Stiegler, in Technics and Time, 1, defines technology in two ways: as "the pursuit of life by means other than life," and as "organized inorganic matter."

Technology can be most broadly defined as the entities, both material and immaterial, created by the application of mental and physical effort in order to achieve some value. In this usage, technology refers to tools and machines that may be used to solve real-world problems. It is a far-reaching term that may include simple tools, such as a crowbar or wooden spoon, or more complex machines, such as a space station or particle accelerator. Tools and machines need not be material; virtual technology, such as computer software and business methods, fall under this definition of technology.Brian Arthur defines technology in a similarly broad way as "a means to fulfill a human purpose."

The word "technology" can also be used to refer to a collection of techniques. In this context, it is the current state of humanity's knowledge of how to combine resources to produce desired products, to solve problems, fulfill needs, or satisfy wants; it includes technical methods, skills, processes, techniques, tools and raw materials. When combined with another term, such as "medical technology" or "space technology," it refers to the state of the respective field's knowledge and tools. "State-of-the-art technology" refers to the high technology available to humanity in any field.


The invention of integrated circuits and the microprocessor (here, an Intel 4004 chip from 1971) led to the modern computer revolution.
Technology can be viewed as an activity that forms or changes culture.Additionally, technology is the application of mathematics, science, and the arts for the benefit of life as it is known. A modern example is the rise of communication technology, which has lessened barriers to human interaction and as a result has helped spawn new subcultures; the rise of cyberculture has at its basis the development of the Internet and the computer.Not all technology enhances culture in a creative way; technology can also help facilitate political oppression and war via tools such as guns. As a cultural activity, technology predates both science and engineering, each of which formalize some aspects of technological endeavor.

Mobile Technology

Mobile technology is exactly what the name indicates – technology that is portable; it refers to any device that you can carry with you to perform a wide variety of “tasks”.  It is technology that allows those tasks to be performed via cellular phone, PDA, vehicles, laptops, etc.  A standard mobile device has gone from being no more than a simple two-way pager to being a cellular phone, a GPS navigation system, a web browser, and instant messenger system, a video gaming system, and much more. It includes the use of a variety of transmission media such as:  radio wave, microwave, infra-red, GPS and Bluetooth to allow for the transfer of data via voice, text, video, 2-dimensional barcodes and more.


Mobile Industry Information:

What do consumers use their mobiles for? According to this US data: 1. calls; 2. SMS; 3. mobile Web; 4. apps; 5. games; 6. social networking; 7. music.A Motorola study conducted during the 2009 holiday shopping season indicated that:  worldwide, 51 percent of shoppers used their mobile device to help make an in-store purchase decision.Bank of America and Visa are currently testing mobile payments for consumers in the New York market; the test runs thru the end of 2010.  Additionally, Bank of America/VIA, AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon and Discover Financial Services are also working together on a joint mobile payment system.Mobile has many uses in addition to marketing, these include:  emergency notification systems, customer service, customer payments, inventory management, employee dispatching, travel directions, non-profit fundraising, and much more!A study by Facebook indicates, of Facebook’s 500 million users, more than 100 million of them are using mobile phones to manage their account.

Studies show that 84 percent of mobile phone users keep their device within 10 feet of them at all times.A ComScore study of U.S. subscribers thru March of this year indicated: 63.7 percent used text messaging on their mobile device, 30.1 percent used browsers via mobile, 28.6 percent downloaded applications, and 18.7 percent accessed blogs and social media via mobile.Over 20 million mobile users text in votes on American Idol each week the show airs.Studies by Nielsen Mobile indicate 97 percent of mobile subscribers will read an SMS (text) message within 15 minutes of receiving it; 84 percent will respond within 1 hour.Average Mobile Marketing campaign response rates are typically 12 – 15 percent (as opposed to direct mail which averages 2 – 3 percent); some companies are seeing response rates as high as 60 percent plus!Mobile marketing is about much more than sending text messages, there are MANY effective ways Mobile technology can be utilized to grow your business such as:  QR codes, Mobile commerce, Mobile websites, using bluetooth and GPS technology, and much, much more!  The options are really exciting, and the opportunities are plentiful!

Mobile marketing is NOT just to target teens and twenty-somethings; prime purchasers in the 35 - 44 and 45 - 54 age brackets are also strongly embracing the use of Mobile.When the Red Cross recently used Mobile to raise funds for Haiti (in $10 increments), almost $5 million was raised in less than 48 hours; to-date, more than $30 million has been raised – all via Mobile.Industry estimates indicate that by 2013 the U.S. will top 100% per capita penetration of mobile phone use.While 65 percent of email is spam, less than 10 percent of SMS is.A recent study by Compete.com indicates that almost 40 percent of consumers are extremely interested in receiving mobile coupons for a wide variety of services / purchases!Demand for mobile websites is expected to exceed PC accessible websites sometime in 2011; if you don't have one, you need one very soon!Worldwide sales of SmartPhones increased 24 percent to 172.4 million units in 2009 according to Gartner, Inc.The total number of mobile phone subscriptions worldwide has reached 4.6 billion and is expected to increase to 5 billion in 2010 according to the U.N. Telecommunications Agency.Nielsen found that 13.2% of US households accessed their bank account via a mobile device in Q2 2010, compared to 20.8% who accessed their account via the bank’s customer service call center.Per Nielsen while mobile banking access penetration is lower than other channels, it has grown almost 14% from Q1 2010.Nielsen data indicates mobile banking users bring greater value to an institution by maintaining average balances of $64,303, about 33% higher than the average customer’s balance of $48,384.

Definition and usage

The use of the term "technology" has changed significantly over the last 200 years. Before the 20th century, the term was unco...