Technology is the use of scientific knowledge for practical purposes or applications, whether in industry or in our everyday lives. So, basically, whenever we use our scientific knowledge to achieve some specific purpose, we’re using technology. Well, there is slightly more to it than that. Technology usually involves a specific piece of equipment, but that equipment can be incredibly simple or dazzlingly complex. It can be anything from the discovery of the wheel, all the way up to computers and MP3 players.

Types of Technology

Since technology can be so simple or so complex, there are many types of technology. One type is mechanical technology, which includes wheels, cams, levers, gears, belts, and engines. Things that turn, or allow motion in one direction to cause a different kind of motion, are mechanical. The wheel is probably one of the most important technological advances in human history, and yet it’s super simple.

Perhaps the type of technology that we’re most familiar with in modern life is electronic technology, usually just called electronics, which is a complex form of technology that uses electric circuits to achieve a goal. Electric circuits can also vary in complexity. If you have a look at a circuit board with dozens of apparently random pathways mixed in with various components, you know how complex electronics can be. But, anything that runs on electricity is electronic. This includes computers, washing machines, dryers, MP3 players, car radios, televisions—anything you plug into the wall outlet. You can also split technology into types based on purpose. There’s industrial and manufacturing technology, medical technology, communications technology, and others.