This blog is a space to explore the intersection of technology, culture, and Christian spirituality. It is primarily a space for me to work out my own thoughts on this subject, but I hope my musings will ultimately be of benefit to others as well.
I discuss this intersection from two perspectives that I think have been absent from, or at least under-represented in, the current discusion. The first is the perspective of a technological practitioner. I have been a professional software developer, off and on, for about twenty years now, and my time in the so called “high-tech” industry has provided me a vantage point that few cultural critics seem to have. This perspective gives me not only deep insights into the nature of recent computerized technology, but also an appreciation of the joy one feels when creating new artifacts and systems. That joy is the result of our human capacity for creativity and artistic expression, given to us, and encouraged in us, by God, the ultimate artisan/engineer.
The second perspective I bring to this discussion is that of a historian and sociologist of technology. After working in the software industry, I returned to graduate school and earned a PhD in science and technology studies (STS, more commonly unpacked in North America as “science, technology and society”). This perspective draws upon a rich set of historical case studies to more closely examine the interaction of technology and culture in practice. These studies have led researchers to reexamine our assumptions about technology’s role in culture, leading to new theoretical models that are less pessimistic, and ultimately more helpful, than what one typically finds in the existing Christian examination of technology.
One of the advantages of working out my thoughts on a blog is the potential for interaction with my readers. I welcome your comments, critiques and suggestions. Through constructive dialog, I hope we can develop a richer, more nuanced understanding of technology, culture, and Christian spirituality.
If you are new to this blog, you should start by reading two older entries that explain my motivations for this blog, and establish a foundation for what I am talking about in other posts: Do Re Mi; and When a Devices Becomes an Instrument.