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Monday, 16 February 2009

The Axle

I suppose more than any other device, the wheel has made our lives so much simpler. Yet I think it was not so much the wheel as the axle which had the greatest impact. A few thousand years ago some bloke must have found a cheese-shaped rock and found it rolled along quite merrily, but what use was it, other than to amuse his mates. "Silly bugger" they no doubt thought. It was only when someone had the bright idea of joining a couple of these circles together with a big stick and then balancing someone or something on top of the stick that the wheel became any use. This is of course purely speculation on my part, but if you think about it, it does make some sense. A wheel on its own ain't a lot of use to anybody ! In fact if we had a lot of them rolling around willy-nilly, what a mess we'd be in !

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