Design, Develop, Create

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Theoretical bases for technology objects

What underlying basis in theory allows us to truly understand of how digital media, ICT and other technology objects structures and 'becomes' intrinsic to social or organisational infrastructure?

Martin Heidegger's idea of 'Gestell' is one way of theorising generative processes involving technology with experience, and subsequently social experience, such that we may account for both the seemingly obvious and trivial explanations for technological agency (tools do jobs they were designed to do) and the more intractable situations and conditions where technology fails to achieve what was intended.

Review the following precis of Heidegger's essay on the Question Concerning Technology (Heidegger, 1977) and reflect on its implications for creating and deploying ICT in organisations as instrumental infrastructures for shaping employee and customer behaviour.

An overview of the Question Concerning Technology by John Zuern at the University of Hawaii.

  • HEIDEGGER, M. 1977 (1954). Question Concerning Technology and Other Essays, Harper Perennial.

Further reading
Hubert Dreyfus, Phil 185: Heidegger's Being & Time (

And Hubert Dreyfus's other courses at Berkeley (