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Karl D. Stephan

Karl D. Stephan received the B. S. in Engineering from the California Institute of Technology in 1976. Following a year of graduate study at Cornell, he received the Master of Engineering degree in 1977 and was employed by Motorola, Inc. and Scientific-Atlanta as an RF development engineer.

He then entered the University of Texas at Austin’s graduate program and received the Ph. D. in electrical engineering in 1983. He taught at the University of Massachusetts Amherst from 1983 to 1999, when he received an NSF Science and Technology Studies Fellowship in the history of technology.

He spent the 1999-2000 academic year at the University of Texas at Austin, and in 2000 accepted a position as Associate Professor in the Department of Technology at Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas. In 2009, he was promoted to full professor and moved to the Ingram School of Engineering. He has also received an appointment as Adjunct Associate Research Professor at the University of Texas at Austin’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.


Should bad engineers go to jail?

1 Aug 2017
Perhaps, but it's unlikely in today's climate

Pokemon’s epic fail in Chicago

25 Jul 2017
Everybody got a Lugia, but no one played the game.

The legacy of a World War II nuclear site

7 Jul 2017
The collapse of a tunnel draws attention to how ethical sensitivities have changed.

The Grenfell Tower tragedy: a disaster waiting to happen

20 Jun 2017
When professionals fail ordinary citizens.

The false promise of digital storage for posterity

10 May 2017
From Aristotle to Hollywood: we can't keep everything forever.

Earth deserves better than TV coverage of climate change

1 May 2017
Important issues often get lost in translation

A Modest Proposal to save California $200 million

18 Apr 2017
The iconic Golden Gate Bridge and legalised assisted suicide could work in tandem.

Is it ethical to grow human organs in animals?

14 Feb 2017
'Chimeras' are being billed as the next big thing in stem cell science.

Will intrepid Mars colonists end up with early Alzheimer’s?

9 Feb 2017
Toxic radiation is the great unsolved problem of space travel

The clouded crystal ball

11 Jan 2017
Why didn’t a society of idlers emerge after productivity soared because of computing?

Life in the new bubble democracy

16 Nov 2016
Social media allows us to reinforce our prejudices and shut out disagreeable ideas

Can science and technology studies prevent the next engineering disaster?

9 Nov 2016
Some bad effects cannot be discovered until a technology is in widespread use.

The overwhelming power of small things

7 Nov 2016
Household devices connected to the internet are responsible for a gigantic attack on major websites

As medicine improves, how long can we expect to live?

13 Oct 2016
We seem to have a built-in expiration date of about 115 years

Alternatives to Facebook: the Mondragon solution

15 Sep 2016
The co-operative model could connect people who really are friends and limit risky exposure.

Is bioscience spinning its wheels?

6 Sep 2016
Perhaps American scientists need to work more in teams, rather than as isolated geniuses

Remembering a true Texas engineer

16 Aug 2016
Ulysses Cephas is not a household name, but he is a symbol of integrity, service and true professionalism.

Should we worry about foreign hackers tilting election results?

10 Aug 2016
If they break into electronic voting machines, democracy is at risk

Do-it-yourself brain zapping

28 Jul 2016
What some people will do when they simply can't afford healthcare.

Self-Driving Car Fatality No. 1: Joshua Brown Makes History

11 Jul 2016
Tesla has some work to do.

Would you torture a baby? Why not?

28 Jun 2016
If there are things we must not do, we need to ask why.

The rights and wrongs of the Human Genome Project—Write

7 Jun 2016
It's hard to imagine how this venture can be achieved ethically

EgyptAir Flight 804: clues to a tragedy

25 May 2016
People are the weak link in aircraft technology

Texas, of all places, shows how to lower carbon emissions

11 May 2016
A state full of oil and gas is a wind-power leader.

Some dumb ideas about smart guns

5 May 2016
Guns which can only be used by one person sound brilliant. So why doesn't anyone want to buy them?

Will robots ever have moral authority?

29 Apr 2016
Abdicating responsibility to machines doesn't make person any less responsible.

Learning from the Kolkata overpass collapse

12 Apr 2016
A sea change is needed in India's construction industry

Drone Delivers to Doorstep: What Next?

31 Mar 2016
The rapid advance of commercial drone technology.

Go figure

23 Mar 2016
Is the defeat of a Korean Go champion by a computer the beginning of the end for humanity?

Happy Friendship Day—Not

14 Mar 2016
Facebook's recycling of old photos was a really dumb idea.

Tragedy in Taiwan: Collapse of the Golden Dragon Building

16 Feb 2016
Taiwan's resilience is an engineering success story.

Earthquake prediction goes commercial — sort of

22 Jan 2016
With so many lives at stake, what are the ethics?

Sandwich panels and the Dubai hotel fire

7 Jan 2016
Cheaper cladding produced the latest towering inferno.

Child’s Play: Hacking the Internet of Things

11 Dec 2015
Are manufacturers doing enough to protect our privacy?

Modern technology: triumph or tragedy?

7 Dec 2015
Engineers sometimes get bad press, but where would we be without them?

Rolling back mass surveillance

24 Nov 2015
Is it possible to regain privacy on the internet?

Rolling back mass surveillance

19 Nov 2015
Protecting the right to privacy in the age of metadata.

Arms control for cyberwarfare weapons

3 Nov 2015
The price of liberty is eternal vigilance.

Kids with smartphones: does the good outweigh the bad?

30 Oct 2015
Not if they bring them to dinner.

All scientists should be militant Christians

19 Oct 2015
Christianity is based on eyewitness accounts of objective physical events.

Tianjin tragedy: a painful lesson

18 Aug 2015
Can we expect this horrific disaster to lead to any improvements in safety?

I compute your pain

27 Jul 2015
Emotion-sensing face-recognition software could transform marketing.

Inside out for real: brain mapping and privacy

14 Jul 2015
Technology that can read your mind will get better and cheaper. Then what?

The Pope’s vision for a new ecology

30 Jun 2015
How can spiritual beings best live in a material world?

Will more auto safety investigators save more lives?

11 Jun 2015
Perhaps not, but the public will feel safer, which is what they value.

The end of the Silk Road

2 Jun 2015
How did a whiz kid lose his moral compass?

Was bureaucratic wrangling behind the fatal Philadelphia derailment?

26 May 2015
The train lacked a new control system.

Driverless cars: good news for whom?

15 May 2015
Operators of delivery fleets would like nothing better than to turn their personnel headaches into autonomous-vehicle maintenance accounts.

Ownership lifestyle vs access lifestyle

29 Apr 2015
The shift from ownership to access will bring profound changes in our political culture.

A bridge too close

2 Apr 2015
The day our author almost became a statistic.

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