Etymology: the word "Technology" comes from the Greek words "technés", which means `art', `made by the human hand', and "logiké", which means `study'. So, Technology is the `study of art', the analisis of how "things" are made and work and how such knowledge can be used to make them better. Today, the Latin-origin word "art" got a different meaning of "technic". Indeed, they became almost antonyms. `Art' carries the idea of something subjective, more "felt" than "undertood", while `technic' is objective, based on "solid knowledge".
Humankind, unlike any other species on Earth (till is known), developed the only social group capable of handling and, what is most important, producing tools, devices, machines. In the millions of years of evolution of life on the planet, humans developed something that was very unlikely, at a first analisis, to be successful among so many fantastic predators, the intelligence.
This Page is dedicated to Alberto Santos Dumont (1873-1932), a great Brazilian inventor. Among other things, he was responsible for the construction of the first pulse watch, because he needed a precise and convenient way to check the time, and on 1906/October/23, about three years after the American Wright brothers' lauched aircraft flight (their vehicle needed a catapult for take off), he made the first self-propelled airplane flight using the "14 BIS", taking off from the plain ground and crossing a distance of 220 m in 12 seconds at an altitude of about 3 m, safely landing then. The "14 BIS" had a 24 H.P. gasoline engine, was 10 m long and 12 m wide. Its wings were set in the rear end of the airplane and it had a canard at its nose, instead of a tail with rudder and elevators. Some clones of the 14 BIS still fly today.
Santos Dumont left the World after seen the airplanes being used as war machines. I think he would be very proud and happy to see that today most are used for peaceful purposes.
Page last modified on 1997-December-4 Thursday.
Page under construction.