Part I: The communication technology that I chose was the “Pentel .e-sharp” mechanical pencil.
As I was doing some searching through an old desk I stumbled upon something interesting. It was a skinny object, measuring about six inches in length, and it was both clear and purple in color. As I disassembled it, things got even more interesting. The tip of the object unscrews and comes off, allowing a purple rubber tube to slide off, thereby showing the mechanical aspects of the item. What appeared to be a spring, as well as a hollow tube were exposed. Upon further investigation I discovered that, stored inside of the hollow tube, were skinny sticks of graphite. To trigger the spring, I concluded that the end of the object must be pushed down, and when that was done there was a small chick sound and the spring forced the graphite sticks out of the tip little by little. At the end of the object, a small white cylinder-like piece of rubber could be removed, therefore letting the graphite be removed when turned over. There is some white lettering as to probably designate the name of the object. There is also “JAPAN” printed on the object, leading me to conclude that this object, like many other objects, was not made in America.
The word graphite comes from the Greek word meaning to draw/write, and it was the discovery of the graphite sticks inside of this object which ultimately lead me to make my conclusion about the use of this device. In addition to the discovery of the graphite sticks, the overall shape of the object was also taken into account when trying to reach a conclusion. I was able to deduce that this piece of machinery was another form of writing utensil, used for record keeping or creating artwork. It seems as though it is an advanced form of the archaic “Number 2” pencils. Using my archaeological skills, and the help of Rogers’ Five Factors, I was able to reach the conclusion that this innovation was one that probably spread quickly and was widely used. The Five Factors for this technology are as follows:
1. Relative Advantage – While this new type of pencil seems as though it would be more expensive, that would be due to the fact that it poses some advantages to it’s predecessor. The design is much sleeker and seems like it would be sturdier and longer lasting, as I would imagine one would just refill the graphite.
2. Compatibility – It would be very easy to transition to this type of technology. It fits into aspects of life and it is my guess that there will always be a need for some sort of writing utensil, so investing in one if this sort would be worth it.
3. Complexity – Little to no learning, except of course how to hold a writing utensil, would be required to use this technology. As stated in the reading, “The smaller the perceived conceptual gap, the higher the rate of acceptance.” In this case, the perceived perceptual gap is very small when looking at this technology, therefore making the rate of acceptance very high.
4. Trialability – It would have been very easy for people to try this technology, as they are probably relatively cheap and easy to purchase.
5. Observability – The results of this technology would be very visible, as most everyone uses some sort of writing utensil in their everyday life, it is just a personal choice what type of utensil one chooses.