Control of Technology

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Description:

As we have seen in the past, technology and power are tightly related. Just think of the technological advances made in WWII, the atom bomb, and supercomputing. Therefore it is not strange to see that the drive to control technology is reflected in our society today i.e. United Nations, treaties (non-proliferation), and export regulations.

Enablers:

Terrorism
If terrorists have access to certain technologies they are able to spread more chaos, therefore controlling these technologies is becoming more important.
International relations
Countries like North Korea and Iran feel dominated by western countries and therefore feel the need to protect themselves against this pressure.
Oppurtunities of new technologies
When new technologies are discovered in most cases they have positive and negative appliances. If these appliances could have major economical or political implications, controlling these technologies is important.
Globalization
Because of globalization people know more about what is going on in the world, thus aware of possibilities of new technologies and ways of obtaining them. This increases the need for countries to control technology. For instance, if people living in the U.S. in 1920s are not aware Russia has made a time machine there is less need to control this technology.


Inhibitors:

World unification
When countries unify, as we see with Europe, the need to control technology is not that prevalent.
World segregation
When countries segregate it becomes more difficult to control technology all over the world.
Anti-technology sentiments
In the future people, also world leaders, are ‘enlightened’ and totally discard the use of technology.

Paradigms:

From the start power and technology were already tightly related. However the impact these technologies had were not on a global scale. Nowadays technologies not only have a global reach but also have a greater impact on society.

Timing:

1876: Airplanes, combustion engine.
1903: Tank
1926: Liquid Fueled Rockets
1938: Robotics, first paint spraying mechanism.
1945: First atomic bomb was tested in new mexico.
1954: PV Arrays
1958: Laser
1959: Integrated circuit (IC).
1969: ARPANET
1971: Microprocessor.
1973: Networking.
1974/75: First consumer computers.
1976: Apple Computer.
1981: MS DOS.
1985: Microsoft Windows.
1989: World Wide Web.
1996: Cloning.

Web Resources:

General:
http://www.un.org/Depts/dda/WMD/treaty/
http://www.mtcr.info/english/index.html
http://science.discovery.com/convergence/techknowledge/ultimate/ultimate.html

U.S.
http://www.bxa.doc.gov/PoliciesAndRegulations/index.htm
http://www.treas.gov/offices/enforcement/ofac/
http://www.pmdtc.org/
http://www.usdoj.gov/criminal/fraud/fcpa.html