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Technology as Fast and Slow Knowledge - Essay Example

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Name Instructor Class May 7, 2012 Technology as Fast and Slow Knowledge In “Learning in the Key of Life,” Jon Spayde examines the meaning of being educated. He argues that being educated means learning the humanities. He believes that the poor will have richer lives with the humanities because, in Shorris’ words, it provides the “foundation for getting along in the world, for thinking, for learning to reflect on the world instead of just reacting to whatever forces is turned against you” (67)…
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Download file to see previous pages On the one hand, he is right to say that technology ruined the environment because of overproduction and industrialization. On the other hand, he does not consider how technology can also help promote ecological interests by developing slow knowledge. This paper argues that although technology has produced harmful effects on ecology, it can also be used in studying and resolving environmental problems through providing fast and slow knowledge. As stated above, Spayde contends that a gap exists between what people have (technology) and their capabilities in properly using it (ethics or moral development). Spayde argues that slow knowledge that is based on “ecological and cultural context” is better than “fast knowledge” that “zips through the terminals of information society” (68). He proves this by saying that fast knowledge provides technology, but this technology has no sense of morality and collectiveness. He also differentiates hard facts from having the slow knowledge or ethics in properly using facts. ...
This essay will prove that these contentions on the balanced outlook on fast and slow knowledge and the importance of technology in ecology are correct through evidence and logic. Technology, especially through computing, has significantly helped the development of the study of ecology. In Chapter 24: Roles of Technology in Ecology, Klomp, Green, and Fry explore the role of technology in advancing environmental interests. They stress that computing technology has expanded the spatial reach of ecological studies through the use of remote sensing and related methods. They underscore that computers have eased the use of large data sets and sophisticated statistical packages and also enabled access to and accumulation of national and global data sets. Klomp, Green, and Fry add that using computer-generated models help simulate environmental events, can offer a greater understanding of ecosystems, and enhance predictive powers to conservation and land managers. Hence, technology can also be used as a tool in addressing environmental problems. Technology does not only produce fast knowledge, like what Spayde contents, because its fast knowledge can also be used to produce slow knowledge. Computer modeling, for instance, has affected ecological theory. Klomp, Green, and Fry explain that ecosystem connectivity is an illustration of a complex ecological problem that computer modeling has handled with substantial success. They underscore that computers have enabled simulations of experiments that real time or space would not otherwise permit. This fast knowledge produced slow knowledge that allowed the development of landscape ecology. Klomp, Green, and Fry argue that computer simulation of this complexity has helped ecologists to better ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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