Wednesday, August 18, 2004
Omni Future Almanac: Ultimate Glue
By the twenty-first century, nails, screws and rivets may be found only in museums.
My feeling is that this was a winking observation rather than a stoic prediction for the future. Nonetheless, my guess is that even if the "ultimate glue" had been invented by now (I'm not currently aware of such a thing), nails, screws, and rivets would be in little danger. Such simple machines have incredible staying power (ok, maybe rivets in most situations may want to consider their retirement options), not the least for the reason that they can be relatively easily undone.
Some technologies are so good, so simple, that extremely large advances are required to supplant them, and in the long history of nails, and somewhat shorter one of screws, we haven't managed to do that yet (and I don't think that the Ultimate Glue would do it either, should it ever be developed).