At any given time it is easy to look back to see how technology has changed over time. At the same time it is difficult to see what transformations are taking place in current times, and even more difficult to see where things are going.
In the late 19th century a revolution in science took off. It was easy to see the vast number of inventions and entrepreneurial sprit of the time. At the turn of the century it seems that everything had been invented. But with the rate of invention at the time, it was difficult to image what more could be invented. Yet, in the 20th century we saw more innovations and more technological advanced than in all history of mankind before that. Never in history have we seen such dramatic changes in the way people live and work.
How can we understand what is happening? What is technology anyways? In this lecture we explore what to make of technology. We define the term we will use in the course. Terms defined are technology, product performance, and innovation to name few. These will be used in the context of the next chapters. Several examples are provided.