Was Technology Invented or Discovered?
The question of whether Technology was invented or discovered is a close but distinct one, that providing a response to it requires one to fully grasp the two keywords(Invention and Discovery) and be able to separate one from the other. Many times we often take the two words to mean the same thing and erroneously interchange them together, not realizing the discrepancy in them.
In deciding if the technology was Invented or Discovered, we need a proper understanding of the two words in order to draw our conclusion prudently.
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Invention: Invention is creating or producing something new from ones own idea, skill, knowledge, and experience, from an already existing physical material(s).To invent means an ability to create or produce something that has never existed before, or the ability to create a new object from an already existing source(object). For every invention to take place, there must be a need that is to be met, or an issue to be addressed. Every invention is always planned and can never be created by chance. An invention is an original concept or thing that did not exist prior to the actual invention.
Discovery: Discovery, on the other hand, is recognizing something that is already in existence. It is the ability or capacity to detect, find or recognize an already existing material or phenomenon. Discovery let people know and recognize factual occurrences that have existed long before. Unlike Invention, Discovery can either be planned through exploration or stumbled upon by accident or chance. A discovery pertains to natural occurrences.
Having gotten a proper idea of the two concepts – Invention and Discovery, providing a solution to the question is closer and clearer. But it will be interesting to flashback to what Technology is all about.
Technology is the application of scientific or specified knowledge to solve a problem.
Having said that, it’s now very obvious that Technology is a product of Invention rather than Discovery. Technology is created or invented and not detected or found. It is created to solve a particular problem or the other and not stumbled by chance. For instance, the quest for effective communication leads to the invention of telephones, radios, and internet. Also, the quest to solve transportation challenges leads to the invention of cars, trains, ships, and planes.
Technology as an invention is created out of an already existing scientific or specified knowledge, skill or experience, using existing materials. For instance, the wheel as a technological tool is an invention derived from wood, rubber, and metal – materials that were in existence. Also, the ballpoint pen is an invention that integrated inventions such as ink, metal, and plastic.
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Technology is purely a work of invention rather than discovery, although many may claim that some technological tools are discovered from previously invented tools. It may not be absolutely correct to call such process a discovery but an innovation.
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