For those of us who are passionate about the world of science and technology, we often do not stop to think exactly what each of the concepts encompasses. We tend to think that they are synonyms, without more.
After analyzing them in depth, we discovered that there are endless nuances between both scientific realities. And that, although it is true that both worlds are in contact, in a kind of symbiotic relationship, their borders are clearly defined. Although many times they touch, many others move away in opposite directions.
And it seems normal to think that science could not exist without technology (or on the contrary) this is not true at all.
These differences become more visible the longer we travel back to the origins of these disciplines. On the contrary, they blur more when we look towards the not too distant future.
But let's go by parts and see who is who in this riddle
WHAT IS SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
To begin with, we must clearly define each of the concepts by itself. Science is the set of studies and disciplines that will allow us to rationally understand all natural phenomena. In a systematized, objective way, demonstrable under protocolized standards and in a constant process of improvement.
For its part, technology is the whole set of processes and procedures that will allow us to solve a problem.
As we can see, the main difference between the two, and the most characteristic, is that science deals with the study of natural phenomena. While technology uses them to achieve goals.
An example will show you this clearly. For example, astronomy deals with the study of phenomena related to the stars, satellites, planets, their movement, etc... While technology would be responsible for using the knowledge we have of that natural reality. As well as others (refraction, perspective, construction of optics) to build a telescope, for the best observation of these phenomena.
Another example. Microbiology deals with the study and analysis of microorganisms. For its part, technology creates tools that, in turn, allow us to solve problems, to continue delving into this science.
As we see between science and technology there is a symbiotic relationship, one benefits from the other. But they should not be confused with each other. Science, for its part, is based on the scientific method and uses it as a research plan, while technology can be a process, a system, or a piece of equipment.
THE EXISTING RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
As we have seen, both disciplines maintain a very close relationship. While one provides the scientific methodology for the study of reality, the other provides the methods, or the necessary instruments to solve technical problems that arise in this process. One reinforces the other and in turn reaffirms its role.
A curious point to keep in mind is that while in the early days, science and technology were clearly separated, today these differences are blurred and overlapping.
This can be positive since, on the one hand, the different problems are approached from a multidisciplinary point of view. In fact, one requires indications, or instructions from the other, to continue with their task and even, sometimes, one goes to the other to solve their crossroads (increasingly more frequently)
Think of synchrotrons, or particle accelerators. Technological constructs of magnitudes unimaginable a century ago, whose sole objective is to confirm or refute scientific theories.
This science-technology marriage greatly benefits the global vision of science, and directly affects the development of both families. That is why in recent decades progress has been enormous, in increasingly shorter periods of time.
WHAT DIFFERENCES ARE THERE BETWEEN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
But if there are so many similarities, what differences exist between science and technology? It is not so easy to appreciate just by reading carefully the academic definition, and we must study these from a practical perspective.
One place where these divergences become apparent is precisely in the classroom. The curricular teaching loads of science and technology careers, despite having coincident points, follow very different paths.
Let's think in this way of the subjects of an engineering and a scientific career, for example a telecommunications engineer and a physicist. One race will build on the principles of the other, but with a clearly different goal.
Physics only aims to study a reality. While engineering uses those principles to solve. For example, a communication speed problem on the network, the creation of new communication systems, or improved communication protocols. Some will study waves and radio frequencies and how they behave in space, and others will use these principles to solve a practical puzzle.
Despite what has been said at this point, new disciplines are emerging today that seem like the perfect marriage of both. Experimental physics, for example. These study the phenomena, and apply these in the same process, in order to demonstrate new principles... THE BORDERS DISAPPEAR
FECYT: SPANISH FOUNDATION FOR SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Fortunately, Spain soon became aware of where the world of science and technology was heading. We opted for the creation of the FECYT, the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology.
The FECYT is a public foundation dependent on the Ministry of Science and Innovation. That under the mandate of the current Minister Pedro Duque, its main objective is to reinforce that existing link between science and technology through actions that promote and promote science as an open discipline, culture and scientific education, offering answers to those needs of the Spanish System Science, technology and innovation.
The Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology, F.S.P. (FECYT) is a public foundation dependent on the Ministry of Science and Innovation.
The FECYT's main fundamental value is to promote a society committed to science as the main value for its comprehensive development, and the well-being of all its members
It aims to be an open foundation with a clearly innovative spirit, in which all members of the scientific and technological community are given a voice.
The FACYT has a vocation for public service, inclusive and with a pedagogical vocation
Its main activities consist of different action fronts that range from monographic talks on different fields of science and technology, which are integrated into the system of official Cambridge public talks, to scientific workshops, through training, conferences and acts of presentation of all that material related to technology and scientific innovation.
They are also involved in the creation and study of pedagogical training plans aimed at schools, technological institutes, and universities, as advisors.
In short, the FECYT aims to place science and technology at the center of public debate and of today's society, in order to improve its relationship with the scientific community in general
THE SCIENCE MUSEUMS, ELDER MUSEUM OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
As a final point of this article, we believe that we should recommend some of the fantastic museums of science and technology that exist in our country.
Have we ever told you about the benefits of visiting them with our children, since it is a very special way of introducing them to this world, but at this point, adults and adolescents, as well as students, can also revisit them , to thus find a new approach to the world of science and technology.
One of these museums is the Elder Museum of Science and Technology, located in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
In this idyllic location, we find one of what are probably the most important for this purpose in Spain, and in Europe.
It is structured in themes per floor and each of them is dedicated to different disciplines ranging from technology and robotics, to mathematics and physics, passing through a really interesting planetarium.
The prices are really competitive, because they depend on the Islands Tourism Council, and they are a strong attraction for visitors to the area.
A good initiative by the regional government, from which we believe that others should take an example to follow.
It is clear that the boundaries between science and technology are often blurred, although we must be aware that each discipline forms a complete reality in itself. Both will always be linked by a relationship of interdependence, and the scientific community in general is aware of this. Looking to the future lets us see that the road ahead is still long, but the horizons converge safely at the same point.
Science and technology will always go hand in hand.