OK G child Stan. A steering dampener works like a remote control car. when you turn it upside down and manually move the wheels then let go the wheels go back to the origional position.
The level of resistance is increased the further the shock moves. they were engineered to keep speed wobbles and tank slappers from happening. the reason everyone talks about them is because when you come down from a high speed wheelie, it's easy to not be 100% centered with the front wheel and that when shit happens.
so basically the best way to put it is that its a resister that is designed to keep the front tire straight but still movable under more force then with out it. Look at the new CBRs they get stiffer the faster you go.