We interact with practical applications of scientific knowledge, more commonly known as technologies, on a daily basis. We wake to an alarm clock, cook breakfast on a gas-powered or electric stove, and go to school by car, bus, or bicycle. We work on computers in lighted classrooms, complete our assignments using pen and paper, and perhaps watch television or listen to music before going to sleep.
Over the years, technologies have been invented to address society's problems or to fulfill its growing desire for speed and convenience. It's amazing to think that up until the last century, most people had to go outside of their homes to use the bathroom and wash up. Indoor plumbing, which is what allows you to take a bath inside your home, had only just been invented.
Here's something interesting to note: Though new technologies might appear radically different from the ones they're intended to replace, more often than not, the old technology remains present in the new. Take, for example, a flashlight. It's superior to a candle in some respects: A match isn't needed to make it work, it won't set fire to other things, and it projects light farther. But essentially, a flashlight, like a candle, is still just a source of light.
While you may be able to use any number of technologies without knowing what makes them tick, exploring their inner workings might encourage you to develop new uses for them, or even invent new technologies to improve them. When you look closely at computers, for instance, they're not much more than pieces of metal, plastic, and circuitry. It's a wonder that these parts -- each of them not capable of much on their own -- work together to enable us to do schoolwork, operate traffic signals, control aircraft in flight, and design so many of the products we use.