Technomotive – a new word for a digital age

Tech – no – mo – tive (adjective)

  1. A response in a person to hype over excess quantities and potential, subjective quality, statistics and parameters, and perceived possibilites
  2. Discarding or overriding other important factors in a debate or decision, due to [1]
  3. Examples:
    • Being an audiophile she bought the $5000 cable, blinded by her technomotive weakness.
    • Like any car salesman, they used technomotive language, reading out the 0-100kmph acceleration time, and power output of the engine.
    • The politician knew the 100mbps figure would be technomotive to journalists and tax-payers alike.
    • Technomotive descriptions held the audience’s attention
    • The entire domain of technomotive persuasion is largely unexplored
  4. Related forms:
    Technomotively (adverb)
    Technomotiveness, Technomotivity (noun)

The need for a new word

In ancient Greek times, Aristotle wrote of 4 modes of persuasion: Pathos, Ethos,Logos, and Kairos. They relate to emotional appeal, the personal character of the speaker, the reasoning, and the limited time.  Back then there were no computers or technology as we perceive it, and no conceivable excess quantities. As a result, Aristotle never identified a fourth persuation, Techno.

The key difference in these times, is the pace of change which introduces a tangible factor of obsolescence, and the emergance of an environment of expectations in culture. The classical persuation techniques concern important factors that are wise to consider, but left unbalanced are tools for persuasion. Tools to distract from important factors not being brought to the attention of the audience. A person who considers technomotive factors, is not necessarily technomotively pursuaded, if they balance other considerations well. Although obsolescence is objectively real, this rarely justifies getting the best and paying a premium.

I propose that technomotive persuasion only been a common technique since the Industrialisation Age, for over 100 years, but never had a name. Technomotive, is a word which helps analyze persuasive writing, and arguments wherever excess quantities or qualities are expressed or experienced, but typically in a technology context. This new word provides a handle for analysis, and is the beginning of deeper research of the domain.

A work in progress

I identified the need for this word about 6 years ago, with several attempts to articulate and refine. I hope others will find it useful and contribute more ideas and research in this domain. I’ll continue to write more below, but hopefully the writing above is a sufficient and stable definition to move forward with.

Further examples

Lots of examples can be found in marketing material and article headlines, here are some examples of Technomotive language (in quotes):

  •  “Experience mind-blowing, heart pumping, knee shaking PhysX and …” – Technomotive language, appeals to the desire to have the best possible gaming experience.
  • “Today is so yesterday” – Technomotive language, appealing to desire to have the latest technology
  • “Planning to overclock your shiny new Core i5 system? Kingston reckons it has the RAM you need.” – Technomotive language, appeals to the desire to have the latest and most powerful technology.
  • The skyscraper was made up of 4,000T of steel and concrete
  • The new dam holds 4000GL of water, enough to…
  • Perhaps overordering of stock could be considered “excessive quantity”, when it is later found to be useless because there are no buyers (they probably never did their market researchers, and were persuaded by the manufacturers that it would sell).

More on Ignoring Economics

A good example is building one’s own PC. People with the money will often splurge on the best of everything, followed by benchmarking, to feed their technomotive desire for performance. When economics is considered, this isn’t the best choice. Last years technology performs 20% less, but will cost 50-80% less. Economics is less of a consideration when someone is driven by technomotive desire.
In decisionmaking, in the case of building a PC, it might be for gaming. One might justify the additional cost for the better quality of gameplay (another technomotivation). Rather than considering that economics are unfavorable in a judgemental tone, one should rather reflect that technomotive desires have the biggest influence.

Ideas

Which may be used to update the core definition or the section [need for a new word]

  • “Excessive Quantities” – this refers economically to depreciating assets, or latent value never eventually needed
  • “Accentuate quantities”
  • Informal word: “drooling”
  • “While in the ancient times, some might have desired more land relative to others, or more jewlery, I would suggest that was more tactical and economical compared to modern times where one desires the inclusion of an optional turbo charger in a car.”
    • It is only in modern times that people are more wealthy. In ancient times, less were wealthy.
    • The wealthy would have certainly sought lavish luxuries, most of which projected the wealth of the owner by social convention.
    • I wouldn’t consider any larger volumes of goods in store to be “excessive quantities”. They can be sold and traded for a similar value.
  • Decouple from obsolescence – while not in the definition, it is in the detail. Obsolescence is related, but I suspect should be kept separate to clarify the definition of technomotive. The more existing terms are explored and used, the better Technomotive can be refined.
    • Technomotive – quanitities.
    • Obsolescence –
    • Nostalgia – One doesn’t think of an old computer in terms of Technomotive, we consider it obsolete, but it can have appeal by way of nostalgia.

Keywords

  • Persuasion
  • Horsepower
  • Kilowatt
  • Speed
  • Power

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