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Engineering and Technology Colloquia Series

The History of Everyday Things

Presented by: Henry Petroski (Duke University)
Category: Engineering Colloquia   Duration: 2 hours   Broadcast date: November 02, 2010
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Everyday objects change over time. New materials, improved manufacturing processes, and altered consumer expectations drive this evolution. Generally speaking, the changes are for the better, but that is not always the case. At the heart of the process is a constant interplay between success and failure. In this illustrated talk, the development of the familiar paper clip will serve as a paradigm for the evolution of useful things of all kinds.