Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Great failures of modern technology 1: The pneumatic drill


Aside from its power and speed hence cheapness; the pneumatic drill is in every way inferior to the pickaxe as a way of breaking through roads and paths.

It is just about the noisiest, most intrusive piece of technology ever devised. One pneumatic drill in the city may render life stressed and painful for many thousands of people in a radius of hundreds of yards

Yet the pneumatic drill has not been superseded - nor is the modern drill (often mounted on a small digger) any quieter or less frequently used than it was in the past. It is a rare day when I am not seriously disturbed by a pneumatic drill while at work.

(Admittedly, part of this is the socialist notion of creating economic 'prosperity' by paying armies of navvies laboriously to drill holes in roads and paths, fiddling with some utilities, filling them in and re-surfacing such as to withstand the heaviest goods vehicles for five years continuous usage, then re-drilling them a fortnight later.)

...Sorry, I've got to break off this post - a pneumatic drill has just started and I need to close the window, again.