Sunday, April 27, 2008

Inventions That Made Progress Possible

All right, here we are, it's 1902, and I work at this publishing company in Brooklyn, NY. It's the middle of Summer. The humidity and heat is causing my prints and lithographs to smudge and smear. When all of a sudden....

This dude named Willis Carrier walks into the shop and says, "Hey, I've created this cooling system that will help control the temperature and humidity of this little shop you got. Everything will be great." And everything was great. Our prints looked great. The shop felt great. Carrier was onto something big, good and big.

He put these air conditioning units in movie theaters, and big business buildings that were dreadfully hot. Continuing to revolutionize the system, Carrier's invention became more and more affordable. The big cats began enjoying them in their homes. Luxury became more luxurious. Soon enough, after the big war, middle class America couldn't live without it.

This led to a mass migration to the Sunbelt and the Southwest. People were actually able to live and produce in a factory setting now without literally melting. How wonderful. Some guys started playing around with silicon and computers were born. But you know what, the computer age would be absolutely impossible had Carrier not brought in the AC System. There needs to be complete control of environment when building computers and their very delicate, heat-sensitive components.

Here I sit, typing on a computer, reading unsmudged ink on a newspaper, living in Southern California with Summer right around the corner. I am looking up at an air duct that brings cool, pleasant air into my home. I might get in my car later and drive with the luxury of air conditioning.

Thanks, Willis. I am super appreciative.

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I am recent graduate just looking at the dirt, writing about it.