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21. You have learned that there are seven inputs common to all technological systems. List these inputs and give an example for each one.

21. There are seven inputs that are common to all technological systems. These include people, materials, tools (machines), energy, information, finances, and time. People are the most important input to technological systems because it’s human needs and wants that give rise to the systems. Also, people are the consumers of technological outputs and they use the products and services that the systems provide. All natural matter that is directly or indirectly used by the systems is matter. Some material may lubricate machines, contain data, package and protect products and so on. Tools are the technical means that must be present before we have technology. They may be simple hand tools or complex machines. Energy is the ability to do work. All technological activities require energy which may be in a number of forms. Energy can go range from human muscle power to nuclear power. The world is full of data, information, and knowledge. Organized data is called information and is essential for operating all technological systems. Finances are the money and credit necessary for an economic system. For example, a technological artifact, such as a home, may be needed and the land and materials to build the structure must be purchased. Equipment must be rented or bought and workers must be hired to build the house. All of these actions require money; finance. Lastly, all jobs or activities take time. Each person has the same amount of time in a day. Their time is assigned to the various tasks that need to be done. Similarly, time must be allotted to all technological endeavors.

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