Monday, March 23, 2009

Old Tools

 
Eva has posted some photos of old lab equipment and tools [Old Tools]. Check them out to see if you recognize anything.

Here's my contribution. How many readers know what this is and what it was used for in prehistoric times? (Click to embiggen.)




14 comments :

  1. I do. It's a slide rule or, as it was called in my native language, "logathitmic ruler". We had to learn to use it in high school. I probably can even figure out how to do calculations with it even now. It is the abacus that I've never mastered :-)

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  2. I still use one. It can, and does, beat the calculators and computers (provided you’re as good with one as I am). And, unlike your calculator or computer, you don’t have to worry about someone stealing it.

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  3. No, that's a device for annoying the kid in front of you, by poking him with the slide extended. Didn't you guys get taught that in school?

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  4. Nope, clearly that is a variable bookmark. If you happen to be reading an oversized book, simply extend the middle portion and insert between the relevant pages to be able to quickly find your place in the future.

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  5. Down with modern technology! Long live slide rules and abacuses and piles of little stones! The Luddites have spoken!

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  6. In the 1970's I worked in a Texas Instruments factory where those new-fangled "Electronic Calculators" were being designed and built. The engineers still wore slide-rules in a belt holster.

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  7. I still have the Faber-Castell slide rule I used in high school (until calculators became legal), which happens to be the one my father used in grammar school in the 1930s. Only the glass cursor has been replaced with a plastic one (because I broke it). Coincidentally, I was doing another keep-or-toss pass through my parents' remaining effects and papers this weekend, and found the maker's manual for that slipstick.

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  8. That is a "behaviour modification tool," used by nuns in Catholic high schools.

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  9. I still have a circular slide rule that I keep on my desk. From time to time I resolve to go back to using it for the things it's better at than a computer or electronic calculator, but the resolution never lasts beyond the moment when it disappears under a pile of paper.

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  10. I love retro stuff. I am so going to buy a slide rule and learn how to use it so I can piss off my kids.
    I'm 46

    I did try and learn to shave with a cut throat razor, but I couldn't afford a good one. I tried to use a cheap satianless steel one. It was shit.

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  11. Slide rule for calculating logarithms, the inverse of exponents. What do I win?

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  12. I'm only 25 and a biologist and I knew that was a slide rule. Come on, give us a challenge!

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  13. I know it's a slide rule, but even if I didn't, it says so, right on it! LOL. and to Anonymous - slide rules can still be stolen, but they don't need batteries to operate.

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  14. It's a guessing stick!

    Good for 2-3 sig figs as long as you kept track of the exponents.

    --
    Martin

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