Journal for technology, energy and civilization Essay Example

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Journal for technology, energy and civilization

Technology and energy have played a key role in the growth and sustainability of civilizations. Before any community develops, several elements come into play that enables them sustain their livelihood while at the same time create opportunities for development(Mega, 2005). For this to occur, requirements such as stable food supply, proper people and time management, resource creation, and maintenance of order have to be a priority. At this juncture technology has to come in. At the same time, production and handling of these resources requires energy. Based on this analogy, it is evident that technology, the production of energy, and the growth of civilizations are intertwined. Therefore, it is imperative to discuss the three together to clearly understand this relationship. This paper will highlight the various aspects in the history of the evolution of energy and technology. In addition, it will explain how the two contributed to the current changes and developments in civilizations.


The industrial revolution brought about a paradigm shift in the production and use of energy. Before that, energy needs and production were confined strictly on domestic grounds and sustaining the home. This included heat derived from the sun, and burning dried materials such as firewood and dung. For transport and work around the home domesticated animals such as cattle and horses were used to provide the required energy. This form of energy could be described as chemical energy as it was derived from the basic materials and food around the home. Most activities were also physical, and expansion was extremely limited to individual strength. Harnessing natural power sources begun around the 17th century, and was developed thereafter. Natural sources such as water were used to derive steam energy and wind power used by windmills and ships(Schrodter, 1999). Thomas Newcomen and James Watt opened up a new world in energy production when they came up with steam engines during the 18th century. This also developed the dependence on coal energy to power the steam engines. Steam energy was closely followed by hydroelectric energy that saw the rise and development of electricity as a form of energy. The discovery of petroleum energy in the 19th century saw the world move to a different level all together. Economies grew tremendously, and civilizations were changes(Schrodter, 1999). This later came to be the single most popular energy source to date.


On the other hand, the technology we have today has come a long way from simple tools in the pre industrialization era to what we have today. When the progress of technology is viewed alongside the evolution of energy and civilizations a clearer picture of these inventions is painted together with their reasons and purposes(Basalla, 1988). Instead of viewing each individual invention separately, technological advancement can be measured by the corresponding evolution in energy and civilization. First, the Neolithic Revolution was the first notable transition that saw a change in culture and lifestyle. This period saw civilizations shift from the use of handmade tools to large scale plantations and domestication of animals. Civilizations were formed, and small families of hunters and gatherers collected to forms villages and small agricultural towns(Basalla, 1988). Technologies such as irrigation, food preservation and storage were popular around this period. The 14th through to the 16th centuries were characterized by the renaissance period. This era was marked by technological advancements such as printing and formal education. In addition, developments from the previous periods were advanced which saw mobility and transport further advance. By the time the British agricultural revolution set in civilizations had grown and the technology being applied enabled these civilizations sustain large populations and economies. By the 19th century technology had shifted to machines that improved efficiency and production capacity. The shift between different energy sources improved the technology behind machine used. Most technologies by the end of the 19th century either used electricity or petroleum energy that brought about the over reliance in these forms of energy. Finally, the information age saw the rise of computers that have in every sense changed technology, cultures around the world, and evolution of energy production.

Works cited

Basalla, G. (1988). The Evolution of Technology: Cambridge University Press. Print.

Mega, V. (2005). Sustainable Development, Energy and the City: A Civilisation of Concepts and Actions: Springer. Print.

Schrodter, W. (1999). The History of Energy Transference: Exploring the Foundations of Modern Healing: Red Wheel Weiser. Print.