Technology as prospective ontology

Synthese 168 (3):405 - 422 (2009)
Starting from common-sense notions of ‘furniture of the world’ a process ontology is developed in which prospective is an integral part. Technology as configurations that work (precariously) embodies expectations which structure further development. Examples (a cloned puppy, hotel keys, DC airplanes, stem cells, and overpasses on Long Island) are used to develop the notion of material narratives that are “written”, not just by engineers and designers/producers, but also by users: “reading” implies some further “writing”. In contrast to prevailing notions of technological control (through manipulation of building blocks), the “writing” of nanotechnology is modulation of the invisible and impredictable - an extreme example of unruly technology and repair work after the fact, where in practice control is a gesture not so different from magic. Because ontology cannot be other than prospective, it is political throughout. Thus, prospective technology highlights ontological politics.
Keywords Process ontology  Prospective  Embodied expectations  Material narrative  Invisible technology  Control  Modulation  Politics
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 22,570
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

View all 13 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

37 ( #118,185 of 1,938,538 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

6 ( #98,698 of 1,938,538 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.