The Evolution of Technology by George Basalla (Cambridge University Press ) pp. viii , $, ISBN 0 I Pbk. The Evolution of Technology has ratings and 8 reviews. Richard said: Humans are the most sophisticated toolmakers in the family of life. We’ve gone f. The Evolution of Technology (Cambridge Studies in the History of Science) [ George Basalla] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Presents an.

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Overall a good introductory book. Our cultural myths celebrate the wheel as a super-sacred icon. Cathy Brandenburg rated it really liked it May 31, The Evolution of Technology. The Evolution of Technology by George Basalla.

Here we’re given an idea of the historical and contemporary attitudes toward technological development, both with regards to what gets developed Chapter I: But the messages contain the medicine we need to blow the locks off our minds, so we can escape, go home, and heal. I taught this book to engineering students doing a history course at the University of Toronto in and Want to Read saving….

Adam rated it liked it May 26, I was drawn to this book thanks to several discussion threads. Diversity Necessity and Evolution. The autopilot runs the show. Harry rated it liked it Jul 03, The first two chapters are introductory, establishing the topic and the terms in which Basalla will discuss the evolution of technology.


Europe was a chaotic and unstable collection of competing nations.

The Evolution of Technology – George Basalla – Google Books

His first task was to demonstrate that innovation did, in fact, evolve — by synthesizing or altering existing innovations. The loss or concealment of crucial antecedents: History is more than just a series of events happening in sequence. From novelty, Basalla moves on to selection.

The same exhibitions that glorified industrial progress, and the men who made it possible In many societies, it became a popular artifact, used for commerce and warfare. Instead, it was evolutionary! Feb 06, Ben Babcock rated it really liked it Shelves: And the third theme is technological evolution: On the most general level the evolutionary analogy serves as a useful organizing principle for studying technological change Gma rated it it was amazing Mar 30, Psychological and Intellectual Factors.

Of particular interest is his counterfactual look at how there are potential basxlla technologies for those adapted at various points in history: Paperbackpages. Cambridge University Press Amazon.

The Evolution of Technology by George Basalla

At the same time as he reassures us that this is an historical account of how technology develops, he dispels any misapprehension that this will be a chronological look at technology from fire through Stone Age hammers all the way to the atomic bomb. It challenges the popular notion that technology advances by the dvolution of a few heroic individuals who One is the result of purposeful human activity, the other the outcome of a random natural process.


But these fresh notions are a sure sign that clear thinking is beginning to seep into the stagnant halls of history departments, those dusty story museums where the dying Cult of Progress will make its last stand. Return to Book Page.

The Evolution of Technology

To him, both are wrong and ” key artifacts such as the steam engine, the cotton gin, or the transistor, emerged in an evolutionary fashion from their antecedents “.

Far from being abstract and abstruse, Basalla’s arguments employ specific examples from ecolution wide variety of technologies.

If we eliminated electricity, this way of life would disintegrate before our eyes, causing many to perish. Given our interest in studying a “lineage” of technical artifacts, I was wary of using the “evolution” metaphor because of the underlying idea of progress that I did not want to imply.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Here criteria are established by the humans who select characteristics they consider worthy of preservation. Why did they occur in specific regions?