Status of Technological Knowledge

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What is the status of technological knowledge in the scientific mosaic? Can technological knowledge be accepted into a mosaic?

Nicholas Overgaard explains the topic

Consider typical instances of technological knowledge such as "x is an effective treatment for medical condition y", "z is a useful technology for bridge-building", "p is a statistically valid technique for assessing public opinion about q". While these techniques will naturally qualify as being used, the question is whether these propositions should also be classified as accepted.

In the scientonomic context, this question was first formulated by Sean Cohmer in 2015. The question is currently accepted as a legitimate topic for discussion by Scientonomy community. Technological Knowledge as Part of Mosaic (Mirkin-2018) is currently accepted by Scientonomy community as the best available answer to the question. It is formulated as: "Propositional technological knowledge can be accepted and be part of a mosaic."

Scientonomic History

Acceptance Record

Here is the complete acceptance record of this question (it includes all the instances when the question was accepted as a legitimate topic for discussion by a community):
CommunityAccepted FromAcceptance IndicatorsStill AcceptedAccepted UntilRejection Indicators
Scientonomy1 January 2016It was acknowledged as an open question by the Scientonomy Seminar 2015.Yes

All Theories

The following theories have attempted to answer this question:
TheoryFormulationFormulated In
Technological Knowledge as Part of Mosaic (Mirkin-2018)Propositional technological knowledge can be accepted and be part of a mosaic.2018

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Accepted Theories

The following theories have been accepted as answers to this question:
CommunityTheoryAccepted FromAccepted Until
ScientonomyTechnological Knowledge as Part of Mosaic (Mirkin-2018)11 February 2020

Suggested Modifications

Here is a list of modifications concerning this topic:
ModificationCommunityDate SuggestedSummaryVerdictVerdict RationaleDate Assessed
Sciento-2018-0012Scientonomy28 December 2018Accept that propositional technological knowledge – i.e. technological questions, theories, and methods – can be part of a mosaic.AcceptedAfter a series of mostly off-line discussions, it has been agreed that the modification is to be accepted. It was agreed that "Mirkin's discussion of potential counterarguments [are] convincing".c1 The consensus is that "Mirkin presents arguments that technological knowledge, like scientific knowledge, can be accepted and not just used, and argues that there are no good prior reasons to suppose that technological knowledge would not be explicable using established scientonomic laws or patterns of change".c2 There seem to be "no prima facie reasons why changes in technological knowledge should not obey the same patterns of scientific change",c3 especially given that fact that "there is considerable overlap between science and technology, as when an instrument is used to acquire scientific data, and the trustworthiness of this data must be assessed".c411 February 2020

Current View

In Scientonomy, the accepted answer to the question is Technological Knowledge as Part of Mosaic (Mirkin-2018).

Technological Knowledge as Part of Mosaic (Mirkin-2018) states: "Propositional technological knowledge can be accepted and be part of a mosaic." There is accepted propositional technological knowledge which appears to exhibit the same patterns of change as questions, theories, and methods in the natural, social, and formal sciences. Technological theories attempting to describe the construction and operation of artifacts as well as to prescribe their correct mode of operation are not merely used, but also often accepted by epistemic agents. Since technology often involves methods different from those found in science and produces normative propositions, many of which remain tacit, one may be tempted to think that changes in technological knowledge should be somehow exempt from the laws of scientific change. Yet, the discussion of the historical cases of sorting algorithms, telescopes, crop rotation, and colorectal cancer surgeries show that technological theories and methods are often an integral part of an epistemic agent’s mosaic and seem to exhibit the same scientonomic patterns of change typical of accepted theories therein. Thus, propositional technological knowledge can be part of a mosaic.

Related Topics

This question is a subquestion of Epistemic Elements. It has the following sub-topic(s):

This topic is also related to the following topic(s):