(updated 16 Jan. 2014)
 
 
READING QUESTIONS

Leonardo to the Internet:

Technology and Culture from the Renaissance to the Present

Thomas J. Misa

Johns Hopkins University Press, 2011; 2nd edition

Chapter 9. Paths to Insecurity (2001-2010)

How can 20th century skyscrapers serve as metaphors for risky technologies in the 21st century? 
 
 
Why have historians of technology had difficulties seeing the consequences and effects of technologies -- especially mature technological systems such as energy, information, transportation?

 
Trace the links between corn-based ethanol, American-style automobiles, and global insecurity.  Hint: what is corn used for?
 

Why is the Internet inherently insecure?  Will the next-generation IPv6 improve Internet security?


How do computers and the Internet create insecurity in these vital systems:
air-traffic control
electricity grids
cyberwarfare



Compare the two (rival) regimes for container security: what are the benefits and liabilities of: [a] risk-based sample screening; [b] 100% screening.


Could the RAND plan for enhancing security in global shipping be extended to other high-risk systems such as information and energy systems?  Would it improve security?


Evaluate the "risk society" thesis of Ulrich Beck and Anthony Giddens.
 




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