Design Ethics

Notes : Philosophy and Technology
Amazon ghost stores - actually automated by humans in India.
One bottle of water = one prompt in Chatgpt
Don Ihde - technocological texture to life
Technology < Technologies
'The question concerning technology' Heidegger
'Real world of technology - social mortgage' Ursula Franklin
Technology ? Freewill ?
Technologies: artefacts, tools, systems, methodologies
Technology existed before science (water wheel, metallurgy, architecture)
'TechnoFeminisin', why perpuating gender inequalities Judy Wacman
'Cyborg Manifesto' Donna Horraway

During this reflection, I will explore several examples that seemed relevant to my understand of the topic:
Exploring design ethics has led me to consider the complex relationship between humans and technology. We've covered a range of topics, from the weird workings of Amazon ghost stores, which rely on human labor in remote locations, to the philosophical insights of scholars like Don Ihde and Heidegger (and may others), who encourage us to reflect on the essence of technology and its impact on our lives.

As we explored the relationship between technology and humanity, it becomes evident that we are active participants in a dynamic process of innovation and adaptation. Reflecting on the interplay between post-humanism and multistability, struck me by the symbiotic connection between human-built structures and the natural world. It's fascinating to observe how birds nest in old buildings and plants thrive in unexpected places, highlighting the resilience of life in unexpected environments.

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Amongst the coexistence of nature and human structures, I'm compelled to acknowledge the omnipresent issue of control and surveillance in our urban environments. The covert use of radar technology hidden in everyday objects like trash cans is a stark reminder of authority's watchful eye. This juxtaposition of innovation and control prompts us to consider the balance between security and personal freedom carefully.

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Context of picture: When I was a child, I always thought a policeman was hidden in the radar box...

The info learnt during the serminar about the Amazon ghost stores persist in my thoughts, stirring inquiries about the widespread influence of automation in our daily lives. Whether it's our routine commutes or navigating intricate transit systems, I'm faced with questions about agency and who holds the reins of automation. This is compelling me to explore further into the power dynamics shaping our contemporary existence and the layers of convenience that obscure them.
For example, I take the metro every day, how automated is it reallly? Who is responsible for this automation?

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The image above depicts DIY laser-cut devices intended for a biolab setting. This visual representation piqued my interest, particularly in the context of multistability, which bears resemblance to the notion of 'hacking.' Throughout the MDEF course, we explored various ways in which technologies can be repurposed for alternative uses. One specific area that captured my attention was the innovative practice of repurposing kitchen appliances to create makeshift bio labs. The notion that a simple pressure cooker could be adapted into a sanitation unit for utensils serves as a compelling example of repurposing technology for unintended applications.

Reflecting on the diverse insights gained from our study of design ethics, I'm struck by the weighty responsibility that comes with the privilege of technological progress. As we strive for advancement, it's crucial not to overlook the ethical considerations that shape our path. By maintaining a balance between innovation and reflection, we can envision a future driven not only by technological capabilities, but by the potential of human creativity and compassion.

Grading time: Overall, I think I would give myself an 8/10. The seminar helped my understanding of technology and its contextual relevance. It provided a loads of references, offering a valuable resource for further exploration whenever questions arise about specific philosophical topics. Personally, I found it particularly engaging because some of the concepts discussed were ones I encountered in school at the age of 17. However, over time, I lost access to the papers associated with those lessons and forgot about them. Therefore, the seminar served as an  opportunity to rekindle my interest in philosophy. Additionally, I appreciated the inclusion of more recent examples, this contemporary approach made the material more relatable and accessible.

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