Wednesday, June 22, 2005

It isn't cutting-edge unless wires hang out the back

This is what real science looks like in its native habitat. Note the lack of gleaming control panels, blinkenlights, or even a cover. I strongly suspect that the wire in the center used to be a paperclip. Other pictures of this, the first solid-state transistor, show the lucite frame with extra holes and other strange non-functional features, indicating to the knowledgeable this was a re-used piece of lucite. See, real scientists don't care about the packaging, but they are packrats. We save everything. Could be useful some day! And it's not like they pay us much.

True state-of-the-art science equipment looks like a train wreck. It is cobbled together with just enough care to make it work, once. And then you sort of keep using it, adding extra gizmos as needed, for years. If you can buy it in a catalog and it has a cover, it isn't science! Remember, look for the dangling wires!

5 Comments:

Blogger Barb said...

Brings new meaning to "Programming down to the bare wire" - don't it?!

8:55 AM, June 24, 2005  
Blogger Snarkatron said...

Well. My first blog spam just got deleted. Just in case you were wondering, spammer, I DO mind huge, off-topic, obnoxious comment hijack attemps and I will stomp on them with great joy. Go bother somebody else.

9:52 AM, June 24, 2005  
Blogger Sgt. B. said...

I wonder what will happen when the last real engineer dies, taking all of those neat, anachronistic designs with him (like the "foxhole radio - which any Boy Scout knew how to build, in the day)?
You're right... This IS real science...

4:12 PM, June 24, 2005  
Anonymous Punctilious said...

Ms Frizzle has it right when she says make mistakes, get messy! I am always slightly suspicious of colleagues who have clean benches.

4:25 PM, June 25, 2005  
Blogger Barb said...

BTW - one of the joys of Haloscan comments is that I don't have to simply delete offensive trash left by trolls. I can make it say Any D*mn Thing I Want!!!!
MWAHahahahaha ...

10:08 PM, June 25, 2005  

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