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An Encyclopaedia of the History of Technology by Ian McNeil

By Ian McNeil

* 22 sections conceal the complete box of the heritage of expertise and every part summarises the improvement of its topic from the earliest instances to the current day* Written with no pointless jargon* 2 huge indexes of Names and themes* Usefully illustrated with a hundred and fifty black & white pictures and line drawings to provide an explanation for key advances`Contain[s] an unlimited volume of trustworthy info over a truly broad box. it's definitely a piece of which I shall myself make widespread use ... it merits to discover a spot ... in each reference library.' - instances larger schooling Supplement`The assurance is great ... a most respected single-volume resource which for its comprehensiveness and straightforwardness of reference will earn its position in either expert and common reference collections.' - Reference Reviews`Informative and accomplished, awesome in its insurance ... covers each element of know-how from the Stone Age to the distance Age ... will unquestionably aid readers to get a grip on and think of a big diversity of topics ... a useful and functional addition to most department bookshelves or libraries.' - New Civil Engineer`The authors represented during this publication are to be congratulated for his or her readable and trustworthy surveys of the previous and current prestige of the key parts the place mankind has harnessed technology for the creation of necessary items and processes.' - selection

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In 1801–2 he had road carriages running in Cornwall and London. By 1804 he had built a railway locomotive to draw wagons on the plate tramway that had already been built from the Penydaren Ironworks of Samuel Homfray to the Glamorganshire Canal at Abercynon, a distance of nearly ten miles. 5 tonnes was pulled at nearly 8kph (5mph) (see Chapter 11). In the years that followed a number of other locomotive experiments were made culminating in the Rainhill Trials of 1829. Stephenson’s ‘Rocket’ was the winner and thus became the prototype for the traction on the Liverpool & Manchester Railway, the first public passenger railway in the world (see Figure 7).

These telescopes were made virtually without any understanding of the principles of optics, but needed only a competence in the grinding and polishing of lenses, craftsman’s work. The true inventor of the microscope is not known, there being several claimants to the invention. Galileo, by 1614, is reported to have seen ‘flies which looked as big as lambs’ through a telescope with a lengthened tube, but Zacharias Jansen, one of the spectacle makers of Middleburg, a rival contender with Lippershey for the telescope, is a possible candidate.

These were no more than closely fitting dowels and they remained the conventional method of joining ships’ and other heavy timbers until iron replaced wood as the basic construction material in the nineteenth century AD. There is some doubt about the woodscrew: examples exist from Roman sites between AD 400 and 450, but in a very corroded state so that it is impossible to be sure of their purpose. All that we know for sure is that the first illustration of a woodscrew is in Agricola’s De Re Metallica, first published in Venice in 1566.

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