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Saturday, June 18, 2016

Weird thing about technology

My lovely wife has been on my case about cleaning out the old electronics. Over the years they've gathered dust in one of the loft rooms. I told her I'd get to it. She doesn't have to remind me every year.

Today was the day. I loaded up the car with obsolete tower computers and their monitors. Down to the transfer station we went. They already had a tractor trailer truck nearly full of electro-junk.

It got me thinking. Of all my tools, electronics have a pretty short life. All that cutting edge stuff becomes useless in ten years or less.

More primitive things last a lot longer. My old 19 inch tube TV is still working. It's an open secret that flat screen TVs last about 2-3 years or so. How is that an improvement?

The more primitive the technology, the longer it's useful. Hammers and hand saws keep going year after year. My axes, splitting mauls, and sledge hammers will be my grandkids. Firearms, with a little care, are still functional 100 years later.

My car is going to be junk in 10-15 years, if I'm lucky. Yet I'm still paddling a canoe that's older than I am.

There's something to be said for simple rugged designs.



  1. exactly! in trade schools i've seen the manual machining and other equipment carried away and replaced with computerized equipment because that is what industry wants. to be hired the students must learn the computer gear.
    seems a pity there is not room to have both types to teach on.
    one day this loss may be deeply rued.

    1. I hope so guy picked up those manual machines cheap and installed them in his garage. That's what one of my cousins did and runs a nice little side business doing custom machine work.

  2. If or when the power grid goes down, you will be glad that you have simple hand tools and know how to use them.

    1. During a major outage when the kids were smaller I gave them all hand saws and had them cut up downed tree limbs. It kept them busy and provided firewood for the stove.

  3. The Amish seem to get by, though they do cheat a little these days.

    1. The Amish are not anti-technology. They just happen to be very careful which technologies they decide to adopt.