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Read the Textbook Rick's SF See the issues page

The purpose of TechEthics.net is to collect ideas and links to ideas on ethical and social issues in technology, including (but not limited to) those issues of interest to Christians, that impact the church, or otherwise have a theological aspect.


The Fourth Civilization--Ethics Society and Technology is available here at TechEthics.net. Originally written on contract for a major publisher, this text is used in Professor Sutcliffe's senior computing course on ethical issues in technology at Trinity Western University.

You may also want to read Rick Sutcliffe's Irish-flavoured Christian science fiction, which covers a number of the ethical issues from the textbook above in fictional format.

Some of the ethical and social issues raised in The Fourth Civilization, and in Rick's SF are outlined here.

Also TechEthics.net has a forum where issues related to those covered in the textbook can be freely discussed.

Noted Science Fiction author and Analog Magazine reviewer Tom Easton, has two interesting and relevant books:

  • an e-book anthology Gedanken Fictions: Stories On Themes In Science, Technology, And Society The table of contents is here and the book is available from Wildside Press.
  • a text resource for those interested in examining at least two sides of debates on a variety of issues in ethics and technology--TAKING SIDES: Clashing Views in Science, Technology, and Society, Seventh Edition. Issues debated include: The Place of Science and Technology in Society, The Environment, Human Health and Welfare, Space, The Computer Revolution, and Research Ethics. Publication information can be found here. This is in the McGraw-Hill Taking Sides series.

Trinity Western University has a research ethics site.

For other sites on ethical and social issues related to technology and/or with a theological aspect, see some of the pages linked to at left or below.

More Links to ethics & technology sites

PBS: Can Religion Withstand Technology? Emerging Technologies and Their Social Implications
Cybertheology National Faculty Leadership Conference: Theology/Technology
TechNewsWorld: Technology and Religion Wired: on Muslims and technology
Cornells Minister of Technology Readings in Faith and Science

Arjay Enterprises Site Information & FAQ
Arjay Enterprises Christianity The Fourth Civilization Issues Discussion
Arjay Enterprises
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What is Arjay Enterprises?

Arjay Enterprises is a personal services company of Rick Sutcliffe, his umbrella for writing articles and marketing his books--Christian Science Fiction with an Irish flavour, Ethics and Technology, and programming in Modula-2.

Who is Rick Sutcliffe?

Richard J. (Rick) Sutcliffe is a professor of computing science and mathematics at Trinity Western University in British Columbia, Canada. He is also a futurist, and has interests in programming, software engineering, ethics, science fiction, and his Irish roots.

Christianity
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What is a Christian?

A Christian believes in the Trinity: God the Father, his Divine Son, and his equally Divine Holy Spirit. A Christian is one who has personally accepted the substitutionary sacrifice of Christ on the cross and so has been redeemed, born again, baptized in the Holy Spirit, and made one of God's family for the purpose of witnessing to the glory of God and doing the works of Christ.
The Fourth Civilization
Info Textbook
Issues Discussion
The Fourth Civilization

What is the Fourth Civilization?
In technological terms, there is a progression in human society, culture, and civilization from the hunter-gatherer (first civilization) through agricultural (second civilization) and industrial (third civilization) to an information-based fourth civilization. Much of what defines the latter depends on computing technology.

Why write a book about it?
"The Fourth Civilization-Ethics, Society, and Technology" was written to examine questions of how to think and behave in an ethical manner under an entirely new set of social assumptions and in a new technological context. Such an examination is particularly important in a day when the "ethics" has been re-defined as a feeling rather than a choice of "right" over "wrong".
This book is a text suitable for a fourth-year course in the social implications of technology for computing and other science majors, and also as general reading. It is written from a Christian point of view and focuses on Christian integration of faith and discipline and across disciplines.

What is Concinnity?
Concinnity expresses the idea that all knowledge is an integrated whole-not because humankind is designing it that way, or because disparate bits and pieces are self-evolving into a well-designed tapestry (aspects of Wilson's "consilience"), but because all truth is God's truth. He designed the universe and all its knowledge in the first place as a well-sculpted, good, pleasing, unified whole for his own glory. When we integrate knowledge, we discover design connections that already exist.

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This Arjay Enterprises page was last updated 2013 09 12