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Ancient But Useful: Old Inventions We Still Use

By Carey Bourdier

While it may be true that we no longer have to wait weeks for a letter to reach another country or continent and our production lines are largely mechanized, there are still many tools used today that are quite similar to the way they were hundreds of years ago. These tools range from navigational items to those used for various types of construction projects.

One item that has remained much the same since ancient times is the wheelbarrow. While we now have gigantic machines and trucks capable of moving huge, heavy loads, if you need to carry away some dirt or rocks in your yard, a wheelbarrow is a handy tool to own. These items were used in Ancient China, Greece and Rome, and ancient examples of these devices can be seen in drawings and also have been found in archeological dig sites.

For millions of years, man has used tools, and in the earliest of times, strong stones were used as hammers. Today, just about every house in the world possesses some type of hammer, typically a claw hammer that can be used to apply force or to remove nails. Evidence of hammers that look quite a bit like these every day hammers have been found to be as many as 10,000 years old,and that’s just in the United States.

Rocket scientists, surveyors and metrologists often use a device known as a theodolite. Chances are you’ve seen a surveyor standing on a road looking through some type of device with a telescope. This device is a theodolite, and it is helpful when you need to measure angles in either the vertical plane or the horizontal plane. The device dates back to the early 16th century when it was used primarily for surveying purposes. The theodolites built beginning in the late 18th century are still much like the ones we used today.

For purists who have a love of sailing, many ancient navigational tools are certainly still put to good use. If you don’t wish to rely on high-tech navigational equipment, you will need telescopes, compasses, a three-arm protractor and a sextant to help you navigate. But what you might be surprised to learn is that even on a huge freight ship or a Naval vessel, the crew still knows how to use these items, and their use is continued to this day. After all, we cannot always rely on electricity, so having a back up is an essential part of preparation.

While you might never have heard of an inclinometer or clinometers, they are important tools for many industries. These devices measure the angles of slope or the tilt of an object in relation to the force of gravity. These devices aren’t exactly ancient, but they have been around for more than a century and are used in the aerospace industry, as well as designing ski slopes, monitoring the condition of volcanoes and even used to study range of motion in our bodies.

Carey Bourdier enjoys writing reviews on precision scientific instruments. For additional info about an Abney level, or to find other products such as a WK-20-8500 Observation Theodolite, please go to the WarrenKnight.com website now.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Bourdier, Carey "Ancient But Useful: Old Inventions We Still Use." Ancient But Useful: Old Inventions We Still Use. 17 Apr. 2014. uberarticles.com. 17 Jul 2014 <http://uberarticles.com/reference-and-education/science/ancient-but-useful-old-inventions-we-still-use/>.

APA Style Citation:
Bourdier, C (2014, April 17). Ancient But Useful: Old Inventions We Still Use. Retrieved July 17, 2014, from http://uberarticles.com/reference-and-education/science/ancient-but-useful-old-inventions-we-still-use/

Chicago Style Citation:
Bourdier, Carey "Ancient But Useful: Old Inventions We Still Use" uberarticles.com. http://uberarticles.com/reference-and-education/science/ancient-but-useful-old-inventions-we-still-use/


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