Human Factors in Computer Science, New Technologies, and Scientific Information

Human Factors in Computer Science, New Technologies, and Scientific Information

Francisco V. Cipolla-Ficarra, Jacqueline Alma, Jim Carré
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4490-8.ch043
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The research work presents a set of rhetorical questions with regard to the new profile that an expert or an editor of scientific information must have regarding computer science and other interactive systems online and offline. The main interrelations between the communicator of the new technologies and those who generate or present themselves as authors of those breakthroughs are also presented, that is, the marketing of sciences. Finally, real examples that show how the economic factor prevails over the neutrality of science are inserted.
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The advance of the formal and factual sciences require a correct scientific communication so that its circulation is horizontal in all fields of society, avoiding the digital divide, which in some cases due to human or social factors imposes a vertical structure because of a few scientists, or rather, pseudo scientists. This last term refers to the appearance of the dynamic persuaders (Cipolla-Ficarra, 2010) or the cyber destroyers of scientific knowledge, for instance. The evolutional or revolutionary progress of the new technologies and the theories constantly interrupts a subtle balance, which is the result of converging and diverging forces among the different environments of a community. Without any doubt the breakthroughs in the sciences and the technologies are one of the main cornerstones for the welfare of the population pyramid. However, if we analyze the structure of education and health the prospects of common good for all humanity when it comes to technological progress, the digital divide has widened in the developed countries in the last decade. In the next decade in the emerging countries that pyramid tends to become a diamond as is the case of India (Bijapurkar, 2006; Bijapurkar, 1979). Schematically, these statements can be depicted in the following way:

Figure 1.

From the pyramid to the diamond: forecast of the change of dimension of the different social classes in India (high, medium high, medium low, low)


In few words, there is in the surface of those changes a constant destabilizing element and which stems from the world economy. Although everything changes, in the 19th century these changes occurred in a gradual way and it took decades for their consequences to be seen. Now the progress spiral is practically unlimited and its limit is in imagination or creativity. That is, the transformations go ahead of imagination. In this context, there is a need to explain and spread the reasons and the methodologies of the changes deriving from scientific and technological research, using specialized communication.


Towards A New Languages For Human Factors In Ict

Currently the amount of information online generated and open to the general public makes it impossible to have a 360 degrees vision of the whole evolution in the ICT (Information and Communications Technology) sector, for instance. Besides, it is necessary to know how to locate and choose from the great volume of technological information, that which is 100% truthful information, with which we can be updated not only in the discoveries, but also in the inventions inside the field of the new technologies. For these actions it is necessary a first analysis of the scientific language.

Every scientific specialty has its codes and rules. Inside scientific communication it is possible to find a linguistic isotopy as to terminology and ready-made sentences (Eco, 1979; Holdcroft, 1991). Then a vocabulary of the incredible emerges which sometimes is related to the religious and confidential, such as the terms miracle, secret knowledge, reaching the ultimate truth, temptations of knowledge, etc. Consequently scientists are usually presented through the mass media, especially television of the 20th century and early 21st century as wizards, creators of miracles immersed in a context of continuous struggle against ignorance. Hence the use of terms like revolution, last frontier, avant-garde, etc., in the texts of scientific popular knowledge. The problem with these terms is that they increase the subjective factor of the information and scientific information must be presented in an objective way. At the same type it generates stereotypes which steer away from reality or scientific truth.

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