Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Gadgets, gadgets, gadgets

As the countdown to July 11th (iP 3G day) moves along, and as the excitement mounts (well at least for me), I reflect on the nature of gadgets themselves. Well I just love them! Boing Boing Gadgets has produced for us a list of the top ten gadgets of all time - rather like on of those programs which appears late in the evening on Channel 4. What would you include on the list? The toaster? Have a look to see if you agree.

There is something very human about gadgets. Not content only with nature, we have to devise ways of adapting and channelling it to serve our purposes better. Gadgets are the exercise of our reason, our intellect and our skill. Wonderful things. Yes, gadgets are the practical application of science.

But that doesn't mean that every gadget is good or even necessary.

There is the story (is it true, or one of those urban myths?) about the US space programme which spent millions of dollars developing a pen which would work in zero gravity - as, you see, gravity is normally needed to force the ink down the barrel onto the paper. In the space craft readings have to be taken and recorded, notes made of environmental conditions, temperatures, pressures, and perhaps the occasional crossword done too. Try writing with pen on paper placed above your head, and you'll soon realise that gravity plays an important role. So, after months of research and development, the working item was produced and put into use.

While the Russians saved their roubles and used pencils.

1 comment:

Sonica said...

Really well done for the blog.these are so sweet and pretty!
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