For machine tool history junkies (sadly, the machine tool industry in the U.S. is largely history), I found a marvelous set of historical photos of the Mesta Machine Company in Homestead, Pa. Mesta for decades was largest steel making machine tool company in the world and was located next to U.S Steel’s former Homestead, Pa. Works. It was even on Nikita Kruschev’s itinerary in his visit to the U.S in 1959. Sadly, Mesta like the rest of steel industry in Pittsburgh vanished between 1975-90. It’s assets were acquired by WHEMCO in 1983. The hundreds of photos from the first quarter of the 20th century show what a power Mesta and the U.S. were in steeling making and heavy industry (now there’s a term you don’t hear much any more).
There is currently much discussion around the term "platform," which may be preceded by the adjectives "mobile," "wearable," "medical," "healthcare," etc. However, regardless of the platform being discussed, they usually have one key aspect in common: They tend to be wireless. So, why is this one aspect so fairly universal? The answer is convenience.
Everyone has a MEMS story. For most of us it’s probably the airbag that saved our lives or the life of a loved one. Perhaps it’s the tire pressure sensor that alerted us about deflation before we were stranded alone on a dark muddy road.
Bioimimicry is not merely a helpful design tool -- it also encourages designers to think not only about how to solve design problems by imitating nature, but how to make the products, materials, and systems they design more ecologically sound and nature-friendly.
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