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Do you think technology from circa 1680 can still surprise and delight in the age of the iPhone and Alexa? I didn’t, but boy was I wrong.

Although we typically think that technology is driven by silicon chips and software, the definition is actually much broader:

technology |tekˈnäləjē|

the application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes

I often forget this when looking at the human timeline from my 21st century vantage point. Then last weekend I discovered the “detector Lock” in the Rijksmuseum, created by British locksmith John Wilkes. The lock (and those like it) is a triumph of 17th century technology and a precursor to the so-called “smart locks” we see flooding the market today.


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