For your response posts, address the following:

  • Compare similarities and differences between your plan for implementing what you have learned throughout the course and your peers’.
  • How do your peers approach the study of technology through the four lenses? How could their insights be useful to you?


This course has definitely shifted my perspective on technology’s role in society. Before, I saw technology as a collection of tools that made life easier and more convenient. Now, I understand it as a complex force that shapes how we interact with each other, access information, and even understand ourselves.

The four lenses humanities, history, the sciences, and the social sciences have been incredibly helpful in dissecting this complex relationship.

  1. Humanities: The humanities lens focuses on the cultural, philosophical, and ethical dimensions of technology. It explores how technology shapes and is shaped by human values, beliefs, and behaviors. Through this lens, scholars analyze the narratives, symbols, and representations associated with technology, as well as its impact on identity, creativity, and expression.
  2. History: Through the historical lens, scholars examine the development of technology over time and its influence on past societies. They explore the social, economic, and political contexts in which technologies emerge, evolve, and spread. By studying historical patterns and trends, researchers gain insights into the long-term effects of technology on various aspects of human life, including work, communication, transportation, and warfare.
  3. The Sciences: The scientific lens focuses on the technical aspects of technology, including its design, functionality, and effects on the natural world. Scientists analyze the principles, mechanisms, and processes underlying technological innovations, as well as their implications for environmental sustainability, health, and safety. This lens also encompasses fields such as engineering, computer science, and applied mathematics, which play crucial roles in advancing technological progress.
  4. Social Sciences: The social sciences lens examines the societal impacts of technology, including its distribution, accessibility, and inequalities. Researchers investigate how technology shapes social structures, institutions, and power dynamics, as well as its effects on social relationships, communities, and governance. Through the lens of sociology, anthropology, economics, and political science, scholars explore issues such as digital divides, privacy concerns, and the influence of technology on democracy and social justice.

By using these different lenses, we can gain a much richer understanding of technology’s impact on individuals and society. We can see how a seemingly simple tool like a smartphone can have far-reaching consequences for everything from mental health to political discourse.

Thinking about the future, the implications of technology are vast and ever-changing. Artificial intelligence, automation, and the increasing integration of technology into our bodies are just a few areas that raise significant questions. It’s crucial to have ongoing discussions about how to develop and use technology responsibly to create a better future for all.

On a personal level, I plan to implement what I’ve learned by being more mindful of my own technology use. I’ll strive to be more critical of the information I consume online and make a conscious effort to unplug and connect with the real world. I also want to be more aware of the potential biases embedded in technology and challenge them whenever possible.


Before this class, if I was asked to define technology itself I would point to something such as a phone or laptop, and state the purpose of technology is to make our lives easier by automating tasks. Since then I have broadened my understanding of what technology really is. Technology is the application of science to develop a tool that can solve a complex problem. When applying technology to society, I used to be focused on the positive outcomes from that technology but this class has made me think about the negatives that come with innovation.

The four lenses approach studying technology from unique perspectives that gives a larger understanding of the effects of technology. Humanities explores human nature and creativity. History explores the past to seek a better understanding of the future. Natural science explores the physical world around us so we better understand our capability to produce technology. Social science explore society and peoples interactions with each other. This understanding can either help or hurt the way technology shapes our future. The better we can predict the effects of a technology on society, the better we can use it for positive change.

Going forward in my career as a software engineer, I plan to use this new found knowledge to understand products I work on thoroughly. This will help me create products that have a positive impact on as many people as possible. It will also help me understand gaps that the technology can cause.