What is Business Technology? - Characteristics & Development

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  • 0:01 Technology
  • 1:20 Evolving Phases of Technology
  • 3:01 What Fuels Technology…
  • 4:08 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jennifer Lombardo
Technology is the essence of change in business and society. In this lesson, you'll learn about technology, its characteristics, its historical phases and how innovation is fueled today.


Flying cars, touchscreen computers, time warp travel, and magnetic trains are all examples of technology. Some of the examples currently exist; others are in the process of being developed, and a few ideas need additional research to bring to market. In this lesson, you will learn about technology and the evolving phases through history as well as what fuels technological innovation today.

Business technology refers to applications of science, data, engineering, and information for business purposes, such as the achievement of economic and organizational goals. The main element of technology is the idea of change, and how it can affect business and society. For many, the issue of future shock develops when technology change happens so fast that it causes individuals to be unable to tolerate changes or handle the consequences. For example, your grandparents might have future shock when dealing with smartphones, tablets, and the Internet.

Technology's effects on society and business are far-reaching. Moogle is a technology company that just created the very first elevator time machine. Let's examine the evolving phases of technology by punching in a date to travel to the beginning of time.

Evolving Phases of Technology

The idea of technology has been around since the beginning of mankind. There are six phases of technology. Let's jump into Moogle's technological time machine and travel back to the first phase called Nomadic-Agrarian (0-1650). Technology at that point consisted of the harvesting of food with stone tools.

The second phase of technology, called Agrarian (1650-1900), consisted of agricultural tasks focused on mechanization, such as the plow and the tractor, that helped with planting and harvesting.

Let's zoom in our time machine to the third phase of technology, called the Industrial Age (1900-1960). In this phase, technology centered on building material goods with machine tools and steam engines. The emphasis was on harnessing alternative energy, such as coal, water, and steam, to power the technology tools.

The fourth phase of technology is called Service (1960-1975) and concentrated on intellectual pursuits, such as with the introduction and growth of computers.

The phase from 1975-2000 is known as Information and is also based around intellectual development of tools for thinking and design. The tools are computers, the early Internet, and applications, such as Microsoft Office.

The last phase of technology is called Semantic (2000-today) and focuses on intellectual pursuits and networking with the addition of smartphones, explosion of the Internet, and social media.

What Fuels Technology Innovation Today?

Now that you have taken a ride through our technology field trip, we will discuss what fuels technology innovation today. There are three specific areas that provide the foundation for technological growth. Government is the first element of technology development, as it is needed to help fund, create, and launch new technology. For example, the government actually started the Internet in the late 1960s. In addition, the government invests in future technology in the areas of science, clean energy, biomedical research, and hi-tech safety and security.

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