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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

1. Introduction of the Information Technology (IT) and Communications Technology (CT) 1.1 Communication Technology Communication technology can be considered to be one of the earliest technologies during the industrial age. Now, communications technology consists mainly of transmission access, communications, optical network switching, communications, mobile communications, satellite communications, wireless support

management, network communication technology professionals. 3G, WiMAX, IPTV, VoIP, NGN and IMS are now the popular technologies on the earth.
A million years ago, human beings are already the most intelligent creatures on

earth. Many attempts were made by humans in their pursuit to develop communication among them, resulting in the creation of unique and private conversations. But then distance is the challenge that they face when it comes to communicating with others located far away. This then has been overcome through many methods. The first few among them was the use of a bird, the pigeon for example which had the ability for long distance flying. But then again, one would have to wait for quite a long period of to receive the message. This may even be a week even a month. Although this way helps to create a link between people from different locations, but it takes time and the information received may be outdated due to the long period taken for the sending of that message. A more efficient choice was not possible or attainable at that period of time. Another type of long distance method of communication was used by the Red Indians. Smoke from the bon fire was used as signals to communicate among tribe located at a certain distance. Of course a certain standard of communication has to be understood by the tribes communicating. Later on, humans themselves were used as a message transmitter, some may go on foot or either by means of transportation such as riding a horse in order to send the message to the desired location, but then it is also not so efficient. During the age of the industrial revolution, people required and need for information and messages to be send at a quicker rate, rather than waiting for long
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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

periods of time for a message or information to be sent or received. By then, something was created that would permanently leave an effect on the society forever. Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the first telephone that was contributed towards mankind brought us to the first decade of communication technology. Before that, the first invention and development of the telegraph was actually the first invention of the communication technology and was then improved by Morse, who is also the creator of Morse code. During the World War I, electric telegraph had been used widely by the military and the government. Until the year of 1876, Bell invented the first telephone or speaking telegraph to replace the telegraph which is not so user friendly due to the fact that the user have to learn the coding before attempting to use the telegraph. As a result, the invention of telegraph and telephone had already let the people can communicate to outside world. People can now gain information and knowledge through the receiver of

the telephone.

(Morses Telegraph in year 1876)

(Bells first telephone in year 1916)

Somewhere at the beginning of the 19th century to 21st century, telephone had been modified and improved to fulfill the situation and the needs of people. At the start of the 20th century, the invention of mobile phone became the impact to the new generation.
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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

Due to its mobility, it has brought people to the new decade of communication. No one can deny the use of a mobile phone. The first mobile phone already shows another improvement in terms of communication technology. From a huge and bulky sized body to the small and thin sized, the mobile phone has been improved to increase its mobility, functions, and also appearance. The new generation of mobile phone has become more and more intelligent and user friendly, hence the name smart phone, which is quite in 21st century because of their extraordinary functions. 1.2 Information Technology Besides communication technology, the invention of information technology has a significant impact to us humans. What is information technology? Information

technology is a phrase which is mainly used to manage and process information used by the general term for various technologies. It is mainly applied in computer science and communications technologies to design, development, installation and implementation of information systems and application software. Information technology research, including science, technology, engineering and management disciplines, these disciplines in information management, transmission and processing of applications, related software and equipment and their interactions. Information Technology (IT) is the concept in post industrial age. Before the idea of IT came out, people are still using their old technique to disseminate their knowledge, cultural and language. The invention of paper and books are the main transmitters and recorders which records down and transmits knowledge and information to the people. People need to store these books in a place to ensure its safety. The disadvantage of the book is that once an accident occurs, such as a fire breakout or any natural disaster, any information stored in it will be destroyed and may not be retrievable; we cannot ensure guarantee the safety of these books, unless if copies of these books were already made and not kept in the same location as mentioned. Calculations were also among the problems faced by our ancestors. This matter is not about the simple addition and substation, but rather complex calculation such as multiplication , diversion, square roots and so on; they would have to go through pages and pages of long and tedious calculations before finally getting to the. It is really complicated and not forgetting, very time consuming. This then led to the creation of the
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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

Abacus in China to assist calculation. The abacus was developed in China and was then moved to Greece and Egypt. Historians also vaguely traced this device back to India and Mesopotamia. This device then led to creation of other calculating devices such as Napiers Rod, Machine Arithmetique, Rechenmashine, and Arithmometer and later on to the computer. At the beginning of the post industrial age, the IT concept had been released and spread among the people. Together with the age of IT, the computer is known to be the most creative and innovative invention. It is because the computer helps people simplify complicated and time consuming tasks. For instance, to process, record, and analyze the data from researches in the field of science, mathematics, sociology, and so on. The computer helps people to save time and money to do the task more efficiently instead by using hand writing or manual calculation. Actually, the first computer was mainly based on relay technology. Examples of these are those built by Howard Aiken in the USA, Bletchley Park in England, Konrad Zuse in Germany and those Bell Telephone Laboratories in the USA. As we know, the computer at that time consisted of large numbers of relays and switches, which had a height of 8 feet and weighed 5 tons; back then we referred it as the calculator. This computer only allowed the calculation of addition or subtraction, multiplication and division. Mechanical relay technology had inherent speed limitations as applied to computation. This led to the use of vacuum tube technology that provided significant speed improvement. In the 1960s most computers were large mainframes, shared by many users. To avoid confusion one has to define the term personal computer as being a computer designed for use by one person. A number of people consider the MIT LINC to be first personal computer. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) developed LINC to facilitate the use of computer technology in biomedical research laboratories. LINC was called as Laboratory Instrument computer. In the year of 1979, Intel introduced the 8088 microprocessor which had a 16-bit internal architecture with an 8-bit external data bus. The memory addressability is 1 megabyte and the microprocessor was available at clock frequencies of 5 and 8 MHz. IBM selected this microprocessor for the personal computer announced in August 1981. This computer became a dominant product in the personal
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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

computer market place of the early 1980s and was crucial in helping to position Intel as a major supplier of microprocessors. Now, the development of information is becoming more mature compared with when it first started. And then, the application of information technology not only includes the computer hardware but it can seek in the development of computing software, network and communication technology. Since the popularity of using computers and the Internet, the application of them are actually implemented into the system of production, processing, exchange and dissemination of various forms of information such as books, business documents, newspapers, music, movies, TV shows, audio, graphics, and images.

(IBM 5100 Personal Computer in year 1975)

(Apple II personal computer in year 1977)

ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

2.0 Technology Determinism and Social Determinism As mentioned above, the social determinism is the one and the most important that contributed to the development of the technology of IT and CT. Technology determinism tends to play the role to create new idea to be implemented into the existing technology. 2.1 Communication Technology First of all we talk about the development of communication technology (CT). Why do we say that the social determinism is the key to develop the technology? Lets start from the history of communication; we know that our ancestors thought of many ways and methods of communication and to make it more convenient, also in terms of reaching distant locations. This led our ancestor to this need of long distance communication, where it is then solved, as mentioned earlier, by using pigeons as the transmitter or men riding a horse to send or transmit the message to other people of a distant place. This obviously shows that the mentioned development was driven by the society, or in other words, socially determined in order to makes the things happen and hence change the way of civilization. Next, it is very troublesome to wait long periods of time when sending or receiving messages or information due the limitation of CT; this then shows that social determinism takes place where the people need a more efficient communication method which is fast and accurate. The invention of telegraph system then took place and presented benefit to our mankind. In terms of technology determinism, Alexander Graham Bell had come out with a concept; instead of using Morses code and telegraph to send and receive the message, why dont integrate the human voice and translate it into a signal and then abstract back the signal to the form of sound, which then can allow people to listen through the receiver to get the message. Together with this concept, Bells telephone was introduced to our society. As the conclusion, the social determinism is the primary determination in the development of Communication Technology (CT).

ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

2.2 Information technology As previously stated, the social determinism is the key in developing Communication Technology. Hence, Information Technology is also mainly influenced by the society rather than the technology, in terms of the development Information Technology (IT). From the previous explanation we know that the invention of paper and books basically comes from the needs of society who want to record and transmit their data and also to store all the information for further use, for example, for educational purposes. But the limitation of papers and books poses a challenge to the people and hence forcing them to find a better way to secure their data by decreasing the chances of losing the data. During the post industrial age, the computer had been developed for the use of mankind. It again shows us the social determinism force in the development of IT. Without the drive and need from the society, people will still be using their old technique to store the data and would not even have the need to do the improvement of this technology. During post industrial age, the invention of calculator and also computers had already taken over the manual technique, so that people can easily store their data safety and also simplify a complex calculation. This is also socially determined in terms of the development of IT. But, technology determinism also plays a role to improve the existing technology by creating a new idea in IT. For example, the computers are already an evolution of multifunction ability; they are even able to process or store data. Some extra features like music playback and video games are already built into computer system. Meanwhile, the calculator has increased their mobility by their reduction of their size, not to mention their capability of running complex calculations benefited us in our generations. As a conclusion, again the primary drive is due to the social determinism, technology determinism plays a role in new creation and improvement of the existing technology.

ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

3.0 Information Communication Technology (ICT) 3.1 Introduction As mentioned earlier, Information Communications Technology, or in other words, ICT is the combination of both Information Technology (IT) and Communications Technology (CT). A recap of the definition of Information Technology is the technology used to process and manage information. However, Communications Technology can be defined as technology used in conveying and transferring meaningful information. Although both technologies possess different backgrounds and implications, as they develop, these technologies will reach a certain point where they play an integrated role in terms of communication and information alteration, storage and transfer. The demand of ICT has become more significant in the 20th century where network connectivity and speed of a certain task is of utmost importance. People nowadays want work to be done as quickly as possible in the easiest manner. Back in the days where people used to use snail mail to send a document to another person in a distant location. This however would take a few days and receipt of the document by the other party is not necessarily guaranteed (in the time of the early postage era). Of course in due time, this method has been improved. But with the creation and development of ICT, transfer of a certain document can be done digitally via computer and the internet all within a few seconds and a guaranteed receipt. This would also mean that thousands and even millions of data and information can be transferred within seconds due to ICT. To sum it up, the merging of Information Technology and Communications Technology to become Information Communications Technology is socially determined. The need and demand for a better and easier lifestyle is made possible because of ICT. It helps humans to communicate with others located half way across the world, office work to be done in the comfort of their own home, transactions of funds and information to be done with a single click, and even recording and transfer of data and information made easy using digital devices.

ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

Many may have the misconception of the concept of ICT. To put it in laymans terms: an example of IT is when one uses the computer to design a digital object by means of a software; CT is when one communicates with someone either verbally or through a communicating device such as a mobile phone; the use of ICT is when someone uses the computer to communicate with another person or transfer information to another person via internet. Therefore, the term ICT is only valid when both elements of Communications Technology and Information Technology come into play. 3.2 Applications Information and Communication Technology (ICT) includes technologies such as desktop and laptop computers, software, peripherals and connections to the Internet that are intended to fulfill information processing and communications functions. The growth of ICT may be caused by both the social determinism and technology determinism. 50 years ago, in order for the society to communicate with other people who are far away, they need to travel and visit them. For example the friends or family who are located overseas, they need to travel by aeroplane to visit them. This is not so convenient for them, it wastes time and money. Today, because of ICT, the social media allow users to communicate through text, images and more. Examples of these social media are the MSN messenger, Yahoo messenger, Facebook, Twitter, and Skype. For instance, via Twitter, users can promulgate information to controlled networks of viewers and review the aggregate updates of other users whom they follow. These systems improve users' abilities to communicate information efficiently, as well as removing traditional impediments such as distance and time separation. It is convenient for them, because they just need to stay at home, they no need to travel, it save time and cost. Next, in terms of education, it is the society that drives the development of ICT. ICT makes it possible for students and teachers to connect with the world outside of the classroom. Teachers can plan lessons incorporating multimedia effects like audio and video for a more interactive experience, and the level of connectivity provided by technology allows students and staff to collaborate on assignments both in and out of the classroom. Besides that, teachers and students need the research tool to find the
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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

information. On top of that, some students may take a long time to travel to their school which can be very inconvenient for them. Therefore the e-learning is created to ease this problem. E-learning enables the students to learn anytime and anywhere through internet. Also, students and teachers can communicate with each other and discussions can be done when the students face some problems in education. Teachers can post their notes, video, and webpage which are related to the syllabus that they teach. These are the social needs, and just because the students and teachers can be at the comfort of their home, the objective still remains the same. As we all know, no banks are open for 24 hours. Long Island branch of Chemical Bank came out the advertisement in 1969, stating the following: On Sept.2, our bank will open at 9.00 and never close again Of course, this was possible through the use of the Automated Teller Machine (ATM). This is a machine functions as the peoples cashier, human clerk or bank teller. There are the possibilities that sometime people need to withdraw money when the bank is already closed. Therefore the ATM can solve this problem. Not forgetting E-banking is also one of the examples that are primarily social determined in terms of ICT. E-banking is a service that allows customers to use some form of computer to access account, specific information and possibly conduct transactions from a remote location such as at home or at the workplace. About 30 years ago, people need to queue in the line to wait for their turn to do cash deposits, payments, check balances and withdraw their money. But right now, they can do these by using online e-banking. They just need to register an account and within seconds, they are able to pay their bills, check the money and transfer money. Of course, technology determinism plays a small role where more functions of the internet have been added to put its use to its full potential. Many efforts have been made to develop the Internet since it is easily accessible by anyone who owns a computer and a device to connect them to the internet. Because of social need, the ATM and ebanking were invented. Hence, highlighting social determinism as the primary force. E-commerce can be defined as buying and selling of products or services over electronic systems such as the Internet and other computer networks. Some people would
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want to buy things without travelling, thus the existence of online buying and selling of products on the internet. In other words, humans are now able to trade from home. For example they can buy or sell the products such as T-shirt, toys, accessories and etc. which could be new or even second hand. For example, a certain brand of T-shirt that is only available in Europe countries would be troublesome to acquire if people were to go there themselves to buy it. Therefore by using online purchasing, this can actually help people to get what they want and eliminate the travelling cost. If we view this matter in a different perspective, this has partially existed through the purchasing of items via telephone. One has to call up a company to order and purchase the desired item which would be sent to the set location. This development of item purchasing has evolved due to the development of the internet, which can be said is technology determined. Because the internet is accessible by anyone who is connected to it, it enabled this development to take place, and as mentioned earlier, cost is reduced. And due to the fact that more cost is reduced, more people would want to purchase the item through the internet. Since this takes place due to the need of the society of easier purchasing, this development is primarily social determined. People with disabilities such as people who are deaf, blind or who are both need some devices that can help them to communicate with other people. Therefore, special designs from ICT systems are able to aid their communication. The deaf can use a text telephone (TTY/TDD) to type and read messages using a keyboard and display screen, someone who is both deaf and blind requires more advanced technology. Communication devices for deaf blind persons operate on the same principle as TTY/TDD phones; however, instead these devices allow the deaf blind operator to input using a Braille keyboard and read the response on a Braille display as well. Another way is by using the speech synthesizers. It allows individuals with a number of disabilities to convert text into spoken words. Blind individuals benefit from the ability to interact with text-based computer applications, while those with vocal disabilities can communicate more fully through text-input speech synthesizers. Synthesizers can be hardware or software; it is driven depending on the specific needs of the user. This development again is obviously more social determined.

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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

Carriers nowadays are more technology oriented. Look into the classifieds of the newspaper and we see job requirements require the applicant to have a certain basic use of a certain technology. To be more specific, one has to have basic knowledge of the use of computers if there were to survive in this era of advanced technology. The use of computers has been so widespread that if one does not know how to operate a computer, he or she will be left out. Therefore one has to be aware and be updated in terms of technology. For example, when applying a job as a clerk, one must have basic knowledge in using word processors or spreadsheets in carrying out their duties. If that person has no knowledge at all regarding the mentioned requirements, he or she will be unable to even apply for the job due to ones inadequateness. If he or she then wishes to apply for that job, he or she has to undergo training to acquire such knowledge. Therefore showing that in this case, the society is subject to technology determinism due to the technology advancements, forcing the society to shape to become more ICT-intact rather than to be left out in its shadow. As a conclusion, seeing all the examples above, the developments of ICT is more primary driven by social. New technologies are basically focused on the social needs because they serve the needs of the society and they want new technologies improve their way of life. With the help of ICT, the society has change to a more advanced lifestyle.

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References Introduction to IT and CT David Mercer, David Mercer (Ph.D.), The Telephone: the life story of a technology, 2006, Greenwood Publishing Group, United States. Roy A. Allan, A History of the Personal Computer, 2001, Allan Publishing, London, United Kingdom. Stephen Doyle, Understanding Information & Communication Technology, 2000, Nelson Thornes, Cheltenham, United Kingdom. apple-2-guides.blogspot.com, Original Apple II, online, from

http://www.google.com.my/imgres?imgurl=http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_5hFCf4AQ Esg/S8ada4Ldl2I/AAAAAAAAAD8/JLdoW2dmQj8/s1600/appleII.jpg&imgrefurl=http://apple-2-guides.blogspot.com/2011/04/apple-i-dan-appleii.html&usg=__Pbctg20BrkKcds0PKOSEp5phOM=&h=443&w=675&sz=27&hl=en&start=0&zoom=1&tbnid=SM EstwlAtbbZgM:&tbnh=169&tbnw=231&ei=7doCTtzBBMLPrQe2raTACg&prev =/search%3Fq%3Dapple%2BII%26hl%3Den%26biw%3D1366%26bih%3D689 %26gbv%3D2%26tbm%3Disch&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx=522&vpy=132&dur=167 7&hovh=182&hovw=277&tx=152&ty=109&page=1&ndsp=18&ved=1t:429,r:2,s :0&biw=1366&bih=689 cedmagic.com,


IBM 5100 personal computer, online, from

http://www.google.com.my/imgres?imgurl=http://www.cedmagic.com/history/ib m-pc-5100.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.cedmagic.com/history/ibm-pc5100.html&usg=__5V46ksNtrrDQoy1xVmrTphekAe8=&h=290&w=400&sz=26 &hl=en&start=0&zoom=1&tbnid=L_0k7IXg83N8gM:&tbnh=132&tbnw=176&e i=LdsCTt2JJsXOrQf1w5nMCg&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dfirst%2Bibm%2Bperson al%2Bcomputer%26hl%3Den%26biw%3D1366%26bih%3D689%26gbv%3D2% 26tbm%3Disch&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx=293&vpy=73&dur=869&hovh=191&hov w=264&tx=154&ty=127&page=1&ndsp=28&ved=1t:429,r:1,s:0&biw=1366&bi h=689

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ATGE5054 THE ENGINEER IN SOCIETY I (THE IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY)

nhsworldciv.wikispaces.com,

Morse

Telegraph,

online,

from

http://www.google.com.my/imgres?imgurl=https://nhsworldciv.wikispaces.com/fi le/view/morse_telegraph_key.jpg/34623691/morse_telegraph_key.jpg&imgrefurl =https://nhsworldciv.wikispaces.com/C3%2B%2BRevoultion%2BAgriculture,%2Bindustry,%2Bcommunication&usg=__AOG 83B2Rljs9a27not8E0XSwlsU=&h=2362&w=3000&sz=1709&hl=en&start=0&zo om=1&tbnid=6C7m6JLTHSuAPM:&tbnh=127&tbnw=154&ei=V9sCTq2DNI6u rAehzonGCg&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dmorse%2Btelegraph%26hl%3Den%26biw %3D1366%26bih%3D689%26gbv%3D2%26tbm%3Disch&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx =453&vpy=66&dur=2246&hovh=199&hovw=253&tx=163&ty=142&page=1&n dsp=28&ved=1t:429,r:2,s:0&biw=1366&bih=689 loc.gov, Bells First Telephone, online, from

http://www.google.com.my/imgres?imgurl=http://lcweb2.loc.gov/service/pnp/det/ 4a20000/4a27000/4a27900/4a27975r.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.loc.gov/pictures /resource/det.4a27975/&usg=__2YdAFm0vRGdawox_0VDBdr2SFgY=&h=454 &w=640&sz=53&hl=en&start=0&zoom=1&tbnid=eJH53Idnul9dM:&tbnh=151&tbnw=213&ei=29sCTumUEobZrQftp9HWCg&prev=/search% 3Fq%3Dfirst%2Btelephone%26hl%3Den%26biw%3D1366%26bih%3D689%26 gbv%3D2%26tbm%3Disch&itbs=1&iact=hc&vpx=1056&vpy=405&dur=2168& hovh=189&hovw=267&tx=198&ty=87&page=1&ndsp=21&ved=1t:429,r:20,s:0 &biw=1366&bih=689

ICT http://www.slideshare.net/mrbennett2009/ict-and-society http://www.slideshare.net/search/slideshow?q=ict+in+society http://www.ehow.com/about_6328459_effect-technology-global-business.html http://www.ehow.com/about_6317964_technology-smart-education.html http://www.ehow.com/info_7952659_ict-systems-improve-communication.html

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